Injury Prevention in Boxing

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Injury Prevention in Boxing

Injuries can sometimes be unavoidable, but in most sports, there are some basic preventative measures that can be taken in order to ensure you stay healthy, and boxing is no different. One thing that a lot of people underestimate is simply being aware of general injury prevention methods. In this article we will briefly outline a few things you can do in order to reduce your risk of injury while boxing.

Warm Up and Active Cool Down

Getting ready for both the current AND next workout are important measures to take if you are focusing on injury prevention. Instead of coming into the gym cold and jumping right into your workout, even shadowboxing, try and make sure you complete a full warm-up first. This is something you can easily customize depending on your preferences, but a guideline for minimum requirements includes 5 minutes of light-moderate cardiovascular work (e.g. stationary bike, skipping, etc), as well as a variety of dynamic stretches that ideally will be boxing-specific movements.

After your workout is completed, don’t just go from 100 to 0 and call it a day. If you were participating in a moderate to vigorous workout, begin the cool down with some very light cardiovascular activity, such as light usage of a stationary bike. This will help prevent lactic acid from accumulating too quickly and making you feel a little ill. Then, it is usually recommended that static stretching be performed after the workout. Focus on holding your stretches for 30 seconds to the point where you feel a stretch, but it isn’t painful. The main reason people often say not to perform static stretching before the workout is because some research has shown it can reduce power output during the workout, therefore negatively affecting performance.

Proper Equipment

Obviously the best way to avoid head injuries in boxing is to avoid being hit, but at the end of the match, chances are you’ll have felt something. Therefore, it is always highly suggested that you use proper equipment when sparring, as the last thing you want is to get hurt learning how to protect yourself. A lot of people don’t realize it, but boxing equipment has come a long ways over the past few decades, and some of the equipment is now engineered better than ever to accommodate the growing interest in injury prevention.

Two main pieces of equipment you will want to spend some time shopping around for are boxing gloves and headgear (you won’t need headgear if you’re not intending on sparring). With boxing gloves, you will want to focus your attention on the padding, how well that padding is dispersed, wrist support, any subtle unique features (e.g. thumb attachment usually required at most gyms), and durability. Durability is key because as gloves wear and tear, they can become less padded and a little more flimsy, potentially leading to less wrist support as well. We understand it can be overwhelming choosing between a bunch of boxing gloves, so for a good guide on selecting the best boxing gloves for you, we recommend the website KO Boxing Gloves.

Headgear can sometimes be a little more apparent, but here are some recommendations. Try to find something with at least partial cheek guards, or ideally, something with a full face bar. Not only will cheek guards protect a higher proportion of your face, but they tend to offer a little more protection for your nose as well (e.g. some punches like a left hook may land on a cheek guard and lose power before striking your nose).

In summary, those are two broad categories of injury prevention to be aware of. If you spend some time focusing on those, chances are your risk of obtaining an injury during training will be reduced significantly, allowing you to get the most out of your training.

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