Should Boxing Be a Women’s Sport?

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About Tom Matlack

Tom Matlack is the co-founder of The Good Men Project. He has a 18-year-old daughter and 16- and 7-year-old sons. His wife, Elena, is the love of his life. Follow him on Twitter @TMatlack.


  1. So what steps are you willing to put into place to discourage women from boxing that won’t be sexist?

    • I’m thinking at this point we should call it quits on the sport altogether. But if women want to beat each other’s brains in have at it. I think what was once a noble sport has degenerated into something less than that with profound health risks. Ultimate fighting is actually much safer because there are flesh wounds but not the repetitive brain blows.

      • I once saw a slow-motion brain scan of someone hitting a soccer ball on the forehead. The brain sloshes around in the skull! I think sharing such videos with people would do well to discourage boxing the natural way.

        • NickMostly says:

          That reminds me of this video from 3 years ago.

          slow motion punches

        • Spidaman3 says:

          I do have one question about the soccer video (Nick’s video answers), did the person have a mouth guard? I know clinching your teeth on one reduces the amount of shaking from taking such hits

        • It might discourage people from doing soccer, but it won’t discourage people from doing boxing. Boxing has been around for 200 years, tons of people like you have tried and failed. Boxers are aware of the risk, and they choose boxing anyway because boxing is a CHOICE. Choice still matters, even in this PC society.

      • NickMostly says:

        Ultimate fighting is actually much safer because there are flesh wounds but not the repetitive brain blows.

        Huh? What would you say is the purpose of “ground and pound” then?

        • I could be wrong but my impression is that because of different equipment and lack of focus on head blows that ultimate fighting has more injury but less long term damage

          • NickMostly says:

            That’s the claim. However Ultimate Fighting hasn’t been sanctioned long enough to know what the “long term” injury figures are. There are fewer deaths overall, but we’d need to know what the ratio of deaths to sanctioned bouts is to provide an accurate comparison.

  2. I don’t know why you think it’s ironic to be anti-war activist and watch boxing. Sports are honorable because everyone has agreed to fight and there are rules. In war, that is never the case. People don’t get to walk away or tap out. How many times have you gone to see a car race and a driver purposely drives into the stands?

    • People also don’t have to join the military if they don’t want to fight, and if they’re injured in war, they’re not going to be forced to stay if they reasonably cannot fight due to injury.

      • Have you heard of conscription? Also “people” is a generic term, young men get drafted specifically, not people in general.

  3. Amber- So true, but the civilians living in any country to gets invaded don’t have many choices. Not like sports. I’m sure a lot of folks in Iraq would have liked to tap out, but they didn’t get that chance.

  4. If there are women who want to box competitively, then yes, it should be a sport.

  5. Women boxing or in UFC is a joke.
    They look like small boys having a bad hair day.
    No wonder they say dumb stuff like
    “Tapping out of a war.”

  6. Anthony Zarat says:

    “But along the way something happened that imbued this animalistic ritual with beauty and grace and meaning. It became the canvas for writers to think, talk and write about manhood for a generation.”

    So boxing is OK for men because it fills a masculine need — but it is not OK for women because it does not fill any comparable feminine need? Why? How do you know? More precisely, how do you presume to speak for 3 billion women?

    You ask:

    “Should Boxing Be a Women’s Sport?”

    Boxing should become a women’s sport if women want it to. Maybe it will be a vehicle for women to re-discover a competitive side of themselves that has been lost for 5000 years. Maybe it will be something completely different. I don’t care and neither should you. People are free to make the choices that they want. If enough women decide to make that choice, then boxing will be a woman’s sport.

    Note that the gender-equality-nuts who are promoting female Olympic boxing are just as misguided as you. The number of women who have chosen to take up boxing is microscopic. Promoting boxing for women because of an ideological bias is just as foolish as suppressing boxing for women because of an ideological bias.

    Just let people do what they want.

  7. Joanna Schroeder says:

    One question, Tom:

    Why not women?

    Not “why not anyone?” but why not women?

    • Because his chivalry instinct has an aversion to seeing women being potentially injured.
      Of course men being injured is a non – issue in and of itself, it’s just generic injury.
      Also note that the psychological and social effect on males of women entering traditionally male fields is also something of a non – issue for the aforementioned reason.

    • The same reason why men don’t hang out in beauty parlors. All throughout the centuries, a mans place has been on the battlefield. Women should concentrate on how to welcome home their warriors and keep them at home so they won’t wander off looking for a mistress. Let us men fight the battles!

  8. More and more we hear about women trying to make their mark in an area that had until recently been considered for men only. My question is where do we draw the line? Men and women are very different in many ways and all for good reason. From a biblical perspective men and women were supposed to join hands, become one flesh and fill the earth. It is written that it is not good for man to be alone. Now I don’t want to turn this into a big lecture but shouldn’t there be a clear distinction between what makes a man a man and what makes a woman a woman? Personally, I believe that men are slowly forgetting how to be men and women are slowly forgetting how to be women.


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