Headgear for sparing or not?

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Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby TianFeng » Tue Mar 08, 2016 11:03 am

So it looks like the AIBA has finished its study sand they have concluded that using headgear in competitions increases concussions.


What should we take form this is we are not competing? How does this have an effect of what to use for sparing. It was shown, however, that it does reduce superficial injuries like cuts and lacerations. What does everyone think?
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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby pathfighter » Tue Mar 08, 2016 1:14 pm

i've always suspected as much. headgear increases the size of the target, limits your visibility and ability avoid strikes, and is less slippery than a slick human head to more probability of connecting. i've been concussed plenty of time with headgear and without. if i had my druthers, i'd spar without or with only ear protection.

full face gear does help save your nose, though.
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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby Canis Caelorum » Wed Mar 09, 2016 5:20 pm

I always avoided wearing it to spar, and in MT we never had to wear it apart from for novice fights, and I only did one of those before moving up to amateur/full. I hate the damned things, I feel like they obscure my periphery vision and just feel awkward. Also I can roll/glance punches off of my head much better without them.
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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby TianFeng » Thu Mar 10, 2016 1:08 pm

I would say I am the opposite. I have sparred with headgear 100% of the time and am definitely in the "false sense of security camp". Without it on I am more cautious but with it on I will be more likely to trade shots. Because of this I am pretty invested in this study and wondering if this should change my approach.
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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby (Insert Name Here) » Sat Mar 12, 2016 4:27 am

Personally im not a fan of headgear for all the same reasons listed by others here. Plus i dont own my own so whenever i have used headgear it was a loaner headgear and stinky and broken down.
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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby Metherlance » Sun Feb 19, 2017 9:43 am

I tried headgear but I didn't stick with it. It didn't seem to reduce the impact of hits by all that much and I felt like I was getting hit way more often. I'm surprised it took this long for a study to confirm what took me 10 minutes to figure out though ....
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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby dzab » Sun Feb 19, 2017 6:24 pm

I always use headgear to spar. Risk of head clashes, nose and eye injuries isn't worth it IMO.

I used to wear competition headgear (open face, limited protection) for sparring and injured my eye - a tear in my corneal epithelium. The scar tissue healed unevenly and re-opens occasionally. Feels like sand in you eye for a few days. Now it's face-bar headgear only.

People complain about lack of visibility with headgear. This is true, but if you start wearing it ALL the time, you get used to it and it becomes normal.

If I was still competing I'd still spar with headgear most of the time, but take it off occasionally to not get the "false sense of security" and to mimic fight conditions more closely.

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Re: Headgear for sparing or not?

Postby Wrestler » Thu Jul 04, 2019 1:34 am

Guys, this was ONE study. One study is hardly conclusive. I’m sure we can find a study proving headgear protects your brain.

In amateur competition they make your wear headgear. There has to be a reason for this or are we, armed just with this one study, smarter than all the athletic commissions of the world?

This is what I see in mma school footage. Guys don’t wear headgear but they’re also actively not hitting each other in the head/face. They go lite to the head and hard to the body but what is this really doing? I think it’s causing a false sense of security amongst these fighters/students making them think they’re unhittable when really their opponent isn’t trying to hit them in the face.

Now contrast this with sparring footage from boxing schools. The hits to head happen more often overall but there is a lot more head movement and blocking. This is because people that get hit in the head don’t like it and eventually adapt by upping their skills.

Mma guys and Muay Thai guys flail their arms out and back up and spar with their chins in the air.

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