davidlee97

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Hey everyone, so I am torn!!!! between doing boxing or being employed as a graphic designer for a student newspaper at my school. Both have huge time commitments.
Boxing is a very unique club because we use boxing as a fundraising event at our school.
If I work as a graphic designer, I have to work four hours per week.

Can anyone give insight as to which one would be "b8r"? Thx
 
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LizzyM

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Are you aware of the American Medical Association's position on boxing? You might want to Google it. Does a sport with the goal of knocking an opponent unconscious seem like a worthy use of your time, an enjoyable activity for spectators, a way to get people to give you money (for a good cause)?

You need to decide which is a better use of your time and talents.
 
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davidlee97

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Are you aware of the American Medical Association's position on boxing? You might want to Google it. Does a sport with the goal of knocking an opponent unconscious seem like a worthy use of your time, an enjoyable activity for spectators, a way to get people to give you money (for a good cause)?

You need to decide which is a better use of your time and talents.
Yes I understand and preciate your input. But I think in this case, it's moar about students being involved in training themselves with discipline for the single purpose of fundraising where the money goes for building healthcare and school in underserved places. So in a way, it's not necessarily so competitive that students have a goal of knocking an opponent out but they keep fundraising more than anything in mind as they spar
 
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LizzyM

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Yes I understand and appreciate your input. But I think in this case, it's more about students being involved in training themselves with discipline for the single purpose of fundraising where the money goes for building healthcare and school in underserved places. So in a way, it's not necessarily so competitive that students have a goal of knocking an opponent out but they keep fundraising more than anything in mind as they spar
Maybe I don't understand boxing.... what is the goal of the match that spectators pay to see? Is there some other way that it raises money other than selling tickets to matches? Is the match a competition? How does one "win" a match? Doesn't this sport involve hitting another person with one's fists (the fists being protected by gloves but the gloves adding additional mass to the fist for a greater impact on the opponent's body.) Is there something I'm misunderstanding?
 
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davidlee97

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Maybe I don't understand boxing.... what is the goal of the match that spectators pay to see? Is there some other way that it raises money other than selling tickets to matches? Is the match a competition? How does one "win" a match? Doesn't this sport involve hitting another person with one's fists (the fists being protected by gloves but the gloves adding additional mass to the fist for a greater impact on the opponent's body.) Is there something I'm misunderstanding?
Thank you for your input. If anyone else has a second opinion, please post.
 

ChymeofPassion

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I'd do boxing. I started boxing my freshman year and it has taught me dicipline, perseverance, and the value of hard work, which has definitely transcended into my academics. Plus it keeps you in great shape. However, I wouldn't mention it in my med school admissions due to in general the kind of people on admission committees. The intangible benefits are worth it imo.
 
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davidlee97

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Why r ppl on sdn so against boxing? I have never met someone oppose it in real life
 
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KoolKeith

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Why do ppl on sdn so against boxing? I have never met someone oppose it in real life
Yeah, I didn't realize it was controversial. I listed it on my app innocently thinking it was just another activity that I grew up doing. Now wondering if I should have left off hockey too..
 
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eteshoe

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Why do ppl on sdn so against boxing? I have never met someone oppose it in real life
I'm more into MMA (recreation/exercise), but you've heard the words straight from an adcom member so you can't really feign ignorance going forward
 

ChymeofPassion

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I'd say the majority of premeds don't box until you knock someone out, its mostly training/friendly sparring. And I'd say for every adcom member who opposes contact sports, there will be many who grew up boxing/playing hockey/football etc
 
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Boxing would probably be a hell of a lot more fun than editing pictures for a school newspaper. You could just list it as a fundraising club anyways.

Edit: And to LizzyM, there's a difference between normal college student boxing and competitive boxing. It's a pretty significant difference, especially in aggression levels.
 
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LizzyM

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I've not heard of any group having issues with hockey, football, etc but the AMA came out against boxing >30 years ago (1) and other organizations have followed suit. (2)

No one has explained to me how one uses boxing as a fundraiser if not to show competitive matches.

1. http://www.nytimes.com/1983/01/14/sports/physicans-journal-calls-for-a-ban-on-boxing.html
2. http://www.apha.org/policies-and-advocacy/public-health-policy-statements/policy-database/2014/07/08/18/05/boxing-should-be-banned
 

bc65

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If you spar with gloves in a ring, you will be hit in the head. I boxed in college, in addition to studying a number of other martial arts. After each match in which I was hit, I would have symptoms of concussion ( headaches, dizziness, nausea ). Even at the time, I realized that this probably wasn't good for my brain. I would be very careful about doing this. The damage may not show up for 20 or 30 years, but it will take its toll. The damage may show up sooner, too. How many points can you afford to lose off your MCAT score or your Step 1 score?

By the way, if you do it long enough, the symptoms will go away, but the damage is still being done.
 

WheezyBaby

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I boxed in undergrad and part of med school. The physical and mental demands are exceptional. The culture of a quality gym is a unique experience that I cherish getting to be a part of. To my knowledge, there is no strong evidence that amateur boxing results in longterm neurological damage different from other contact sports. With that said, that doesn't really pass the measure of face validity with the recent CTE research that's come out. I stopped boxing in med school due to time and to protect my head. Whether you want to pursue it is a personal decision. I don't regret my experience. Im not sure I wouldnt deny my future child the same experience though
 
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davidlee97

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If you spar with gloves in a ring, you will be hit in the head. I boxed in college, in addition to studying a number of other martial arts. After each match in which I was hit, I would have symptoms of concussion ( headaches, dizziness, nausea ). Even at the time, I realized that this probably wasn't good for my brain. I would be very careful about doing this. The damage may not show up for 20 or 30 years, but it will take its toll. The damage may show up sooner, too. How many points can you afford to lose off your MCAT score or your Step 1 score?

By the way, if you do it long enough, the symptoms will go away, but the damage is still being done.
Thank you for your input!
 
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davidlee97

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I boxed in undergrad and part of med school. The physical and mental demands are exceptional. The culture of a quality gym is a unique experience that I cherish getting to be a part of. To my knowledge, there is no strong evidence that amateur boxing results in longterm neurological damage different from other contact sports. With that said, that doesn't really pass the measure of face validity with the recent CTE research that's come out. I stopped boxing in med school due to time and to protect my head. Whether you want to pursue it is a personal decision. I don't regret my experience. Im not sure I wouldnt deny my future child the same experience though
Thank you for this post as well
 
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Are you aware of the American Medical Association's position on boxing? You might want to Google it. Does a sport with the goal of knocking an opponent unconscious seem like a worthy use of your time, an enjoyable activity for spectators, a way to get people to give you money (for a good cause)?

You need to decide which is a better use of your time and talents.
Some boxing institutions also have a point system, where a hit about the midsection is registered as a point. Individuals with more points at the end of rounds win matches. Protective gear ensures the damage from hits is minimized and there are no extra points for harder hits, giving no incentive to beat someone's brains out. This type of boxing emphasizes strategy such as deciding when to hit, how to counter, and how to be elusive in the midst of a match. Despite what is depicted on television, the sport itself is not always some barbaric pit fight.
 
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davidlee97

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Some boxing institutions also have a point system, where a hit about the midsection is registered as a point. Individuals with more points at the end of rounds win matches. Protective gear ensures the damage from hits is minimized and there are no extra points for harder hits, giving no incentive to beat someone's brains out. This type of boxing emphasizes strategy such as deciding when to hit and how to be elusive in the midst of a match.
I believe this is how they do it at my institution
 

JPSmyth

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Why r ppl on sdn so against boxing? I have never met someone oppose it in real life
I fought in the amateurs, and boxed for years. Don't mention it on an application, look at what @LizzyM said, it just looks bad. Yes boxing is the "sweet science" and you're supposed to hit and not be hit, and technically you can win on points, but when it comes down to it, it's modern day gladiator. Every time you get in the ring you risk your own life and your opponents. Adcoms do not want these people to become doctors.

There are no two ways around it, you are in there to hurt your opponent. You are training with the sole purpose of separating your opponent from their senses.

If you haven't competed as a USA boxing registered fighter, then you "work out," you do not "box."

Either way I would advise leaving it off
 

Gurby

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Grapple instead - no brain damage, low chance of injury as long as you're smart and careful. Wrestling, Judo, Jiu-Jitsu!
 

bc65

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some boxing institutions also have a point system, where a hit about the midsection is registered as a point. Individuals with more points at the end of rounds win matches. Protective gear ensures the damage from hits is minimized and there are no extra points for harder hits, giving no incentive to beat someone's brains out. This type of boxing emphasizes strategy such as deciding when to hit, how to counter, and how to be elusive in the midst of a match
This is misleading. Professional boxing is also scored by points. The defensive skills, control of space, quality and number of punches are taken into account and that's the basis of awarding rounds, and consequently points, to professional fighters. The details may vary but it basically works the same way in pros and amateurs.

The protective gear actually causes more harm than good, and the headgear used by male fighters has been discontinued because rather than protecting fighters it actually allowed more punches to the head and resulted in more concussions. The same is probably true of the heavier gloves amateurs wear, which probably encourage more punches by causing less pain to the puncher. Gloves might decrease some fractures, and decrease cuts, but by eliminating injury to the puncher's hands, it increases blows to the head, and increases the coup-contracoup brain injuries.

Real fights end quicker. On Saturday night, the guy who lost the fight comes in with a broken jaw. Monday morning, the winner comes in with a hand fracture along with a deep infection due to a human bite injury from punching the other guy in the mouth. But in the ring, their hands and jaws are protected, so they can hit each other in the head without having to stop early due to injury.

The aggression and desire to win will be the same. The main difference is that amateur fights are shorter, only 3 rounds, vs up to 12 for a pro fight, even 15 for some title fights.

Of course you're trying to knock your opponent senseless. That's how you win. You don't punch softer, if you do he'll hit you and knock you senseless.

Also, since pros get their start as amateurs, the guy you might be fighting could very well be a pro on his way up.

That said, OP, if you do it already, I would list it. I think most people would assume you're doing a 'non-contact' version. Alternatively, you could call it 'martial arts' and you can elaborate if asked. I don't think it would necessarily hurt your application, but it likely will hurt your brain, even if only sub-clinically.

I'm sure it hurt mine. That's probably why I ended up a surgeon.
 
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Thank you for your input. If anyone else has a second opinion, please post.
She is an adcom, I would take her advice. You don't have quit boxing, but saying essentially "I like to competitively beat people up for fun"does not convey the compassionate and caring demeanor as expected of a future physician.


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Okay so below I wrote literally a novel about my boxing experience haha! Part of it was for my own nostalgia of reliving the boxing days - part of it is because I feel like it has everything you can expect boxing to be - if you want to compete - and you can make your own decision off what I've said.

Story time:

I have been involved with boxing since I was seven years old. Not entirely continuously - I have gone on and off, my most recent year spurt ending ~9 months ago. In my time, I've had my fair share of amateur bouts and sparring sessions of all sorts. There is nothing like boxing, plain and simple. The adrenaline of a bout, even a good sparring session, is entirely unlike any other feeling in the world. Also, it requires very, very serious dedication to become good - even to become decent. Professional boxers, perhaps more than other types of fighters even, are super human. Fighting for 12 rounds and getting hit with what they take - I mean that's truly a phenomenal display of what the human body is capable of at its very extreme.

I was never amazing, but I was decent! Long story short I ended up getting involved with the wrong crowd at an extremely young age. Boxing was definitely part of what set me on the right path. I trained anywhere between 20-30 hours a week at times. Couldn't pay for a trainer for more than a few months at a time so I would get the training then practice in my garage, with my brothers, and with my friends all the time. If you're lacking in discipline in your life, and you need something to help get you straight, boxing can definitely help with that if you commit to it.

You can expect lots of 1-2 mile run circuits; something like sprint for anywhere between 10s-60s then run at a slower pace for 1-2min, rinse and repeat for the entire duration. If you're not a cardio person this will be simply horrible for the first few weeks, it was for me when I restarted once again this last time. You can expect lots of jump rope, 1-5min rounds, fast as you can go. Go buy a speed rope now and just start practicing; if you need to teach a fighter footwork - get them very good at jump rope. You'll want to be able to run around the track while jumping rope, string together lots of double unders, criss-cross, one foot at a time for X jumps, etc. Youtube is a good help - but in the end you'll just have to jump rump for anywhere from a few months to a year to get good.

Lots of drills too, jab step hook - for example, and variations of - over and over and over, literally thousands upon thousands of times until the movements start to become second nature. Sideways circles, defense drills, drills to keep your shoulders high and covering the side of your head, I could go on and on about all the little technical things you'll have to wire into your neural pathways to become a truly decent boxer. If the coach is good, he/she will tell you how to do everything, but you better be ready for some pain! It is a ton of fun, especially if you like adrenaline at all, and sparring will make you feel very humble - and quite possibly scared - if you end up getting into that and actually wanting to compete in a sanctioned bout. Fighting for even 2-3 minutes at a time is much, much more difficult than people think. By round 2 see if you can even manage to keep your defenses up in the beginning! 100% you will be getting hit, a fair amount - if you want to start competing it's simply inevitable.

So that's my mildly objective overview and "this is what you can expect with boxing speel". I definitely have positive feelings toward the sport and owe a lot to it, along with other types of training.

With all that said - as much as I really do love boxing, especially all it taught me and all the time spent with friends and family through it, and really how difficult and how much true dedication you need to become any good - there are downsides. I'm not sure when you might have rainbows in your vision, or wake up with weird headaches, or see a halo around every light with seemingly brighter lights everywhere you go - but if you stick with boxing long enough, you're pretty likely to get one or two of these. I did. It will probably be transient, but it will come.

That was when I drew the line. When I was a kid, sparring and what not, I didn't care about medical school - or saving my brain. Now I'm not saying that everyone who boxes for any amount of time gets long-term brain damage, definitely not. I don't have any, and I trained in the sport one way or another for quite some time. Amateur boxing hasn't been shown to cause long-term neurological damage that I am aware of either. But plain and simple, it's not good for your brain, and you'll be able to tell after you spar with some moderate-high intensity.

What did it for me was after sparring with an extremely close friend - probably someone I consider a brother, and I woke up with the brighter lights, headaches that would come and go all day, and stuff like that that wouldn't go away for a week or 2. Thing is - and if you start you'll see this - when you get really close to some of the others, if you stick around long enough - you guys will be able to spar at 100% with each other like its nothing, because your that close that you know you can test your limits with each other. And you will want to show off to impress the others too, because they are your family and your team, and your training partners - so you want to show them how well you are doing! You don't spar at 100% all the time, maybe very infrequently depending on the coach, most of the time sparring is anywhere from 30-80%. But if you want to compete, I would say its safe to assume you are going to be somewhere on the concussion spectrum at some point of your career. After a couple fights you will be much much better, and it will probably be easier, if you stick with it that long!

So that's it. That's my entire boxing experience written as objectively as possible, though certainly it is subjective, and all the little pros and cons that go with it.
 
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