5 Most Common Boxing Injuries You Should Know About

Common Boxing Injuries

There’s a common saying in the world of sports – being a boxer, your most robust ability would be the ability you would acquire. In simpler words, if your body doesn’t have the capability of enduring hard consecutive boxing bouts, all the training sessions you have gone through to gain hard-earned skills would go in vain.

Regardless of whether you have a strong will or not, you can only accomplish things your body is capable of. Many experts have proclaimed that boxing is as safe as scuba diving, horse riding, or gymnastics. Boxing visual brutality has forced many to consider it as one of the most dangerous sports existing there.

However, boxing still is a sport where bad injuries can happen. Irrespective of whether in an ongoing bout or during training sessions, injury in boxing is common.

And, if you are an avid boxer, unsurprisingly, common boxing injuries can happen to you as well. You should be focused on overcoming the situation to become energetic and fit for the upcoming bouts as soon as possible. It’s also vital to know how to help boxing injuries when they do occur.

Therefore, go through this article properly because I have mentioned a few of most common injuries and highlighted the ways of treating them. Remember to always consult your Doctor if you have suffered any of the below first.

1. Boxer’s Fracture 

Boxers fracture

Boxer’s fracture can happen in the hand’s metacarpal bones. The metacarpal bone connects finger bones with the wrist. The most common cause of a boxer’s fracture is hitting an inert object. And most of the damage often happens in the little fingers and bones under the ring.

However, it can cause damage to other bone areas as well. Fractures in areas like the jaw, nose, and ribs aren’t that unusual too. Moreover, 20% of the boxers have had or would have this type of injury at some point in time.  

Boxer’s Fracture Treatment 

Treating boxing injuries like a boxer’s fracture would require medical attention where a medical practitioner would perform an x-ray for diagnosis. If the bone is in an aligned position, the doctor will strap the finger with a splint or cast, allowing the bone to heal itself. 

But, if the bone is missing its natural alignment, it needs to be put back in its position with pins, and that requires surgery. Healing time can be between 6 and 10 weeks, depending on the damage that happened and the patient’s age. The swelling of the hand can be minimized with cold compress along with elevation. The doctor can also suggest hand therapy balls to promote the strength of the affected hand.

2. Rotator Cuff Injury

Rotator Cuff Injury Boxing

The tendons allowing the shoulders’ mobility and located at the top of the humerus is the rotator cuff. A healthy and robust Rotar cuff is essential for a boxer as they provide the power for basic shoulder movements like rotating the upper arm in and out, taking the upper hand far from the body. 

  • Rotator Cuff Tendonitis

If the cuff muscles have micro-tears and are strained, then it’s regarded as Rotator Cuff tendonitis. This is often a cause of overextending your shoulder, cause weakness, pain, and low mobility of the shoulder.        

  • Rotators Cuff Tears

Rotators Cuff Tears can result from a sudden trauma in the cuff or can develop over time. For most boxers with this issue, the micro-tears in their rotator cuff become more extensive with time. If the shoulder suffers from a deficiency of rest, the rotator cuff wouldn’t have needed time to heal itself, resulting in a weak shoulder.  

  • Rotator Cuff Injury Treatment 

The Rotator Cuff injury is mainly diagnosed by a doctor who would ask the patient to move his hands in definite directions. He can also check the strength of the shoulder by asking him to press against something. X-ray is a primary method to identify whether there is a spur in the bone or not. 

The treatment may include physical therapy, rest, applying a cold compress, taking anti-inflammatory drugs, and sometimes surgery. 

3. Lacerations or Cuts

Tyson Fury cut in bout vs Wallin

Cuts, also regarded as Lacerations, happen when the skin tears and starts to bleed. This kind of injury is common during bouts, often occurs when skin roughly gets in contact with the opponent’s head or gloves. Although cuts are not that threatening to the players, severe tissue damage can impede the boxer’s boxing ability during that match

Lacerations Treatment

If cuts happen during any bout, the medical team can fill the petroleum gel gap to restrict more bleeding. However, when the spell concludes, the affected area needs to be appropriately cleaned, followed by a proper dressing. All the traces of that gel need to be washed away; otherwise, there’s a great chance of infection. 

If there’s any damaged or dead skin tissue attached to that area, it should be cut off from there. Else, it can cause bacterial infection as well. The open scar area needs to be closed with stitches, tapes, medical glue, and massages to break down the scar tissues. 

4. Concussion

Mike Tyson Knocked down

Arguably, a concussion is one of the most severe injuries in sports like boxing if not the worst. A trauma occurs if a punch on the head jolts someone’s brain in the cavity of the skull. During a concussion, the person often gets into a state of confusion and daze. After being punched on the face or head, if a boxer claims to have pain in his head or seems nauseous or dazed, he may need immediate medical attention. 

Concussion Treatment  

Generally, a concussion is treated by reviewing the symptom’s severity. For someone having a headache, the doctor can prescribe painkillers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen. He might also be asked to take plenty of rest and stay away from stressful things like sports, riding bikes, or driving vehicles for at least 7 days.

5. Dislocated Shoulders

Dislocation of the shoulder is yet another injury that can happen to boxers. It can be excruciating, but you can reduce its severity by treating it as soon as possible. This part is often more essential for the boxers who have crossed their youth days. Then, the shoulder may take a longer time to heal and often result in freezing or shoulder immobility. 

Shoulder Dislocation Treatment

The first thing the doctor would do for treating is putting the shoulder in its proper place. When it is done, the person will feel lesser pain. The doctor can also use sling or splints to immobilize the bones’ location to heal while prescribing medications for relaxing the muscles around the area.

The person needs to take plenty of rest so that the bones around the area can heal and gain back their natural strength. 

How Can You Prevent Boxing Injuries to Happen? 

Anthony Joshua stretching

Being a boxer, you should always recognise that staying away from potential injuries is wiser than treating them when they have already happened. Although most of the injuries mentioned above rely on your luck, there are some ways to avoid getting frequently injured during training or matches.

You can minimize boxing injuries like cramps or muscle strains, warming up your muscles before hitting your training sessions or bouts. Some conditioning warm-up exercises combined with strength training can also be beneficial since they mobilize your major muscle groups while raising the heart rate.

Performing stretching exercises is yet another key to avoiding injuries. Hence, they should be performed both after and before boxing. Check out my article on 10 muscle recovery tips for some ideas.

Take Enough Rest  

When someone goes through high-intensity workouts, his muscle tissues may break. And the recovery process of the body provides more power to be able to do those exercises with more proficiency repetitively. 

But, when you practice them excessively, they are bound to give you some severe side effects like altered hormonal states, decreased performance, decreased immunity, and more. And another problem would be, without proper rest, your muscle can get strained for resulting in further injuries later on. 

Devote Enough Time to Your Body for Regeneration  

It’s also imperative to provide enough time to your body for regeneration, which means the day you don’t hit the studio is not wasted. You are endowing time to your bones, muscles, and tissues that they require for regeneration. Hence, never forget to nurture your body with two imperative factors – sleep and nutrition. 

If you intake carbs, proteins, and fats in the right amount, it will reduce your muscle breakdown process. It will also feed your body to build more muscles, improving the recovery process of your body.  

Sleep and rest are yet another thing as much important as training is. With the right amount of daily sleep, you can improve your health, gain more energy to devote it to your practice sessions, and in turn, your boxing skills will become sharper.

A healthier body means strong muscles and thicker bones. Hence, it is needless to mention that it would keep you far from getting frequent boxing injuries. Besides, during sleeping, growth hormones get secreted from our body, which is extremely important for developing and maintaining lean muscle mass while reducing body fat levels.

Use Recovery Tools

Now not everyone will access to physios or health care professionals of such, so will need to look at alternatives to help with some injuries and recovery.

There are many tools you can consider to help with some of the issues mentioned above. Here list of some recommended options you could consider.

Massage Gun

Massage Gun’s have recently really become very popular and are definitely a more expensive option to go for if you are planning on better muscle recovery. Much like the foam roller it helps to target deep tissue muscle by repeatedly moving in and out. 

A massage gun aims to reduce inflammation by flushing extracellular fluids such as lactic acid in the muscle tissue. This is great for boxers as it can quickly reduce muscle soreness, relax tight muscles and ease tension. 

I recommend you check out OPOVE massage gun or look at some options on Amazon.

Cooling Bag/Pack

This is a brilliant way to help with any injury or swelling you may have – especially if it is a fresh injury. The cooling properties will help reduce inflammation and pain in the specific injury area.

Check out on Amazon here

Shoulder stap

If you have suffered a shoulder dislocation in the past and are still suffering, it might be worth investing in a sling or shoulder strap to use for 2-3 weeks.

Check out options on Amazon here

Wrist Brace

If you have suffered from a boxers fracture, wearing a brace for at least 6-10 weeks is needed to see a good recovery. Combining with ice/cooling therapy is also great way to help with any swelling or pain.

Check out options on Amazon

(I always recommend you get advice from health care professional for injuries mentioned above)

Take a CBD Oil product

muscle recovery using cbd oil

CBD Oil is quickly becoming a very popular product among boxers and mixed martial artists. Don’t worry, this is without THC (getting High). There are many benefits including reducing pain and inflammation, nutritional value, improving sleep and reducing anxiety.

Two recommendation for you include Kanibi’s CBD Sports Heat Cream, which has been a lifesaver for me before and after hard sessions in the boxing gym. While I’ve also used the Kanibi cooling roll on gel for previous injuries and muscle soreness to help with the pain and inflammation. You read my review on Kanibi here for more details

You can check out my article guide to for boxers using CBD oil here or check out some of my reviews on CBD product I have personally used.

Final Thoughts

Boxing is a brutal sport whether are training to fight or even box to stay fit. There are so many potential areas that you can injured and it is almost guaranteed considering the nature of the sport.

Despite these common injuries, it’s still important to look after your self as much as possible so these don’t occur.

Training on your defensive skills, being stricter with your recovery and nutrition are also a good start.

Let me know in comment below if you have suffered any of the above injuries and how you helped recovery process.

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Jamie - Boxing Life

I'm a boxing analyst, amateur boxer, and blogger looking to pass on my boxing experiences and passion to anyone looking to learn or find out more about the sport of boxing. Whether that be gear reviews, fighter analysis, news, training tips, or my own personal journey, I'll be covering it on 'Boxing Life'.

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