Boxing, often called "the manly art of self-defense," is a sport in which two competitors try to hit each other with their glove-encased fists while trying to avoid each other's blows. The competition is divided into a specified number of rounds, usually 3 minutes long, with 1-minute rest periods between rounds. Although amateur boxing is widespread, professional boxing has flourished on an even grander scale since the early 18th century. Amateur fights consist of 3 rounds, professional fights from 4 to 15 rounds. The recognized length of championship fights is 12 rounds. In most countries, professional boxing is the more popular version, but the rules vary because there is no true governing body. Even in the United States, boxing regulations vary from state to state. In all boxing, however, winners are determined either by a decision of the judges (who keep points or round victors on a scorecard as the fight progresses), the referee, or both. The winner also may be decided by a knockout, in which one rival is sent to the floor by a punch and cannot get up within 10 seconds. A doctor or referee can declare the boxer injured or defenseless even if there is no knockdown. A tied or even match is ruled a draw. The boxing ring is actually a square, 12 to 20 ft (3.7 to 6.1 m) on each side and enclosed on each side by three or four ropes. Gloves have been worn by boxers as a general practice since 1892. Gloves are made of leather, have no finger holes except for the thumb, and weigh from 8 oz (227 g) for amateur bouts down to 6 oz (170 g) for professional and all title bouts. Boxing originated when a person first lifted a fist against another in play. Different eras of the sport have been distinguished by the use or nonuse of fist coverings. The ancient Greeks believed fist fighting was one of the games played by the gods on Olympus; thus it became part of the Olympic Games in about 688 BC. Homer has a reference to boxing in the Iliad. During Roman times the...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document