Boxing and brain damage

Discussion in 'Boxing Training' started by amateurBox, May 3, 2023.

  1. amateurBox

    amateurBox New Member Full Member

    May 3, 2023
    Hi everyone

    My question is will sparring 3 times a week give me significant brain damage in like my iq dropping some points. I plan on going to mma training for atleast 6 months and maximum one year. I have went before and have gotten hit on the head about 3 times each training. Only one of them hurt a bit (cross to the nose).
    If so would it make a difference if I only sparred twice a week or is once better (I know less is better but is it going to make a significant difference) ?

    Sparring is 10 rounds. 5 is pure boxing other 5 mma. I could ask in the mma rounds to mainly do grappling but I cant assure it, so let's go with I'm also getting possibly hit in those 5 mma rounds.

    I know this is a boxing forum but my mma gym is mainly boxing and a bit of grappling almost no kickboxing, atleast no kicks to the head.
  2. Mike_b

    Mike_b Well-Known Member Full Member

    Jul 9, 2020
    I'm gonna bump this, I commend your ambition and you come across as earnestly, I don't have much experience sparring but get a good mouthguard like a brain pad or such. Invest in a nice helmet, because some have nose guards, chin guards, all types of guards and make sure it fits. My cauliflower ear wouldn't fit in a helmet once, and another time I was wearing a xl I think it was green hill helmet and buddy knocked it off my head with a punch.

    You do understand that getting hit in the head is part of the game right? You gotta harden your spirit to be desensitized to it. Like d Wilder says "the human brain was not meant to be punched." Or better yet, learn how to defend yourself and your head intelligently before you even start offense/ learning how to punch. This is the art of hitting and not being hit.

    Don't worry about your grades too much, Juan diaz went to school WHILE being a highly prolific fighter, earning a degree in law. Heck some of these coaches have the equivalency of a university graduate in boxing! Just play fair... Some things that COULD affect your studies are bruised sore body parts, and possibly tiredness, headaches included. When you spar you kinda get your head rocked. I think that is the concussive of the punch. I wouldn't worry about your IQ, you can't control that. Only focus, homework, punctuality and executive functioning will help with that . Stretching yourself too thin and then you'd be tired in class! But yeah, take it in stride one day at a time, there's nothing wrong with being a safety oriented boxing MMA guy.

    Monte Barret, seemed to throw caution to the wind. He was getting beat up in sparring, continuosly, ears bleeding. One day he sat in his driveway and said eff this i.dont need it, but he corrected himself, telling himself that this (going back to the gym where he got his ass kicked) would make him a better fighter. That's a very extreme situation though because he was a mixture of world class talent mixed with poverty,

    My uncle himself was a conservative. I told him after the gym I was having headaches from punching the heavy bag, the pain traveled up my arm to my head but that was my experience. He told me "the next time that happens, you better pack it in."

    You sound like a smart dude. Make good use of that brain in class, you have something special up there. Be careful not to squander it! Plus don't go striking at 100% "play, don't kill each other."
    sasto and mono like this.
  3. JunlongXiFan

    JunlongXiFan Boxing Addict Full Member

    Aug 9, 2020
    Anecdotally, I'm 20 and have boxed for 8 years. I'm not intellectually deficient in any way. If my IQ has decreased, it hasn't been enough for it to be noticeable, even in a university format.
    Toney F*** U and sasto like this.
  4. weepaul

    weepaul Member Full Member

    Dec 8, 2008
    You should read the book Damage and then decide…
    VanBasten likes this.
  5. Babality

    Babality KTFO!!!!!!! Full Member

    Dec 6, 2008
    I don't practice boxing because of this. I see no sense in getting brain damage. If I were poor and boxing was my way out then maybe.
    I would actually love to box I am not scared of getting hit because of pain. I can deal with the pain of getting beaten up. But the permanent damage, specially to the brain, scares. I don't want to lose part of me.
    cross_trainer and KidGalahad like this.
  6. Kratos

    Kratos Well-Known Member Full Member

    Jan 27, 2014
    Yes most people that box will get brain damage, there are so many variables on severity and when it will show up.
  7. Braindamage

    Braindamage Baby Face Beast Full Member

    Oct 1, 2011
    About time someone of great intelligence makes a thread about me. I'm sure you'll mention how often I get my predictions right or how knowledgeable I am. A 1000 thanks to you good sir. LOL
  8. sasto

    sasto Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Aug 5, 2020
    I suspect there is huge individual variation in this. What is a bump on the head to one person is a concussion to another.

    It's like smoking. My grandmother smoked for 50 years and is still alive in her 90s, my uncle died of cancer before he reached 70.

    It's unlike smoking though in that, outside of getting hit in the head, there are immense physical and mental health benefits. If boxing motivates you to be active and healthy, then it's probably worth the odd punch.

    I would say that if you get diagnosed with a concussion you should stop though.

    Practicing boxing will help you "get" Braindamage.
  9. iceferg

    iceferg Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Apr 25, 2008
    I boxed competitively and did a lot of heavy sparring and eventually I felt like this started to catch up with me. I think I'm over a year removed from any proper hard sparring (other than one 6 round spar last October) or competition, I also use nootropics now too and my thoughts and memory are becoming much clearer again.

    All I will say on this matter is be very mindful of concussions and avoid taking unnecessary punishment. In my opinion the worst damage can occur in one sustained beat down where fighters are too tough for their own good.

    Nick Blackwell stood up to all of Eubanks shots look what happened. David Light took all of Okolie's shots the other week and ended up suffering a stroke.

    The higher up the levels you go the more at risk you are.
  10. Braindamage

    Braindamage Baby Face Beast Full Member

    Oct 1, 2011
    Lots of street fights, fall off the back of a pickup truck, slamming head first into a tree, falling through piping etc, except the street fights, all knocked unconcious. Does that count
    sasto likes this.
  11. AngryBirds

    AngryBirds Active Member Full Member

    Sep 3, 2022
    Boxing is one of those sports thats much better to watch and debate about than it is to actually get in the ring and do.
    Toney F*** U likes this.
  12. sasto

    sasto Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Aug 5, 2020
    It's hard to find low level competition as an adult. Guys either have zero interest in taking a punch (even a very soft one just to practice technique) or are pretty advanced. Not a lot of in between.

    It's one of life's little disappointments, hard to find any casual athletic competition after college.
    NoChin likes this.
  13. Slyk

    Slyk Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Dec 5, 2010
    If you have it in you, there is no stopping you from pursuing it. The thing to remember is that the second you feel your ego even somewhat satisfied, you need to get out. It's not something to play around with and it's very easy to fly too close to the sun. I know guys who've never had a pro fight but have spend a few decades around the mid level amateur scene and they are punchy. It cannot be understated how life changing brain damage is. Get the one amateur win or have the one great sparring session against your gym rival and hang em up. Consider it a drug you want to experience but not make your lifestyle.
    NoChin likes this.
  14. vast

    vast Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Nov 27, 2010
    No doubt that every person will be impacted differently. A fighter like La Motta who took tons of punishment lived into his 90’s and was still mentally there into his 80’s. Then there’s the case of Quarry who suffered severe brain damage. Most symptoms won’t show till later in life.
  15. ForemanJab

    ForemanJab Steroid Junkie Full Member

    May 8, 2014
    Depends on how hardcore the sparring is. If it’s the usual hard to the body, light to the head then there’s less risk. If you’re having full on smokers in the gym then yes you will sustain some brain damage over a period of time.