There is much debate regarding the safety of boxing for teen athletes. Proponents of the sports point out that there are fewer injuries in boxing than in any other contact sport. Individuals that rail against the sport say there is no way a sport in which the main objective is to punch the opponent in the face can be safe. In any event, there are a number of steps that can be taken to make this fun and exciting sport a safe one for teens.
Sparring is necessary to sharpen the skills of a young boxer. However, minimizing the amount of sparring can be done in a way that will protect you from many of the risks associated with sparring without sacrificing your development, according to My Boxing Coach. One option to full-contact sparring is technical sparring. This activity can be done in or out of the ring, and each boxer should wear a mouthguard and 16-ounce gloves for safety purposes. Partner boxers work on sequences together but without landing any punches. For example, the first boxer throws a jab and the second boxer blocks. Later, the second boxer might jab and the first boxer will practice taking a step backward to avoid the punch and then move forward back into position. The sequences can be as complex as the skill level of the boxers will allow.
Always Wear Your Gear
Teen boxers should never be allowed in the ring without all safety gear in place. The proper use of hand wraps, mouthguards, and headgear will prove sufficient to prevent many of the most common injuries. There are a number of mouthguard styles to choose from, and you should find the one that best works for you. According to Murfreesboro Family Dentistry, in order from least to most effective, the different kinds of mouthguards are over-the-counter, boil-and-bite and custom-fitted.
Exercise and Conditioning
A young boxer who makes the effort to condition their body to its fullest potential will perform better and is much less likely to get injured. You should stretch to prepare for every workout and again as part of your cooldown after a workout. This will reduce the likelihood of muscle strains. You should also pay attention to your form when you’re doing bag work and shadowboxing so that your form will develop perfectly as you work on strength and conditioning. According to Stretch Coach, conditioning your body before boxing helps keep your muscles flexible and strong so you can be healthy for your next match. Finally, roadwork is essential for assuring that you have the stamina to compete in a boxing match.
Boxing, like all contact sports, comes with inherent risks to the participant. However, boxing is much safer when the proper precautions are taken.
If you or your teen are interested in boxing, check out our boxing classes!