Objective: To determine the incidence, pattern, and severity of injuries resulting from participation in amateur boxing.
Design: A prospective 5-month survey of injuries which occurred during competitive amateur boxing and training.
Setting: Amateur boxing competitions held in Dublin between November 1992 and March 1993, and the six largest amateur boxing clubs in Dublin.
Participants: All the competitors in the tournaments and the > 16 year old members of the boxing clubs.
Interventions: Participation in competitive amateur bouts and/or boxing training.
Main outcome measures: Incidence, pattern, and severity of injuries sustained in competition and training.
Results: The incidence of injuries in competition was 0.92 injuries per man-hour of play (or 0.7 injuries per boxer per year), while the incidence in training was 0.69 injuries per boxer per year. Cerebral injuries were reported only in competition, most of these being mild concussion. Hand, wrist and facial injuries were related to direct impact and occurred more frequently in competition than training, while injuries to other body parts were predominantly chronic and training-associated. Shoulder and knee injuries were the most debilitating injuries seen.
Conclusions: The yearly risk of injury resulting from participation in amateur boxing is relatively low when compared with other sports. Cerebral injuries, which occur almost exclusively in competition, are predominantly mild concussions.