Can Boxing Cause the Terrifying Parkinson’s Disease?

Muhammad Ali had been boxing for 30 years. He took a lot of punches. But could that be the reason he experienced tremors, slowness of movement, and slurred speech? Can boxing cause Parkinson’s disease?

Can Boxing Cause the Parkinson’s Disease

In 1984, Muhammad Ali experienced symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. His neurologist examined and diagnosed him with parkinsonism. It’s an umbrella term for movement disorders included in Parkinson’s disease.

The announcement of that diagnosis caused people to ask whether or not boxing did it to this heavyweight champion.

Can Boxing Really Cause Parkinson’s Disease? 

Unfortunately, neurologists have not determined yet whether or not boxing could cause Parkinson’s.

In that case, Muhammad Ali could still develop it even if he was a tennis player or a doctor.

Indeed, this sport can often damage the brain. It’s an occupational hazard for all boxers.

Thus, even though neurologists couldn’t definitely say if Ali’s symptoms were the result of his boxing career, his head trauma could have increased his risk.

Head Injury and Parkinson’s 

It’s challenging to know what’s causing the Parkinson’s of a person. However, some data showed that head injury could be increasing the risk for developing this disease.

In this study, researchers found that those who sustained one head injury were likely to have a diagnosis of Parkinson’s. The likelihood is increased in people with more than one head injury.

But the study didn’t verify whether or not boxing could directly cause Parkinson’s disease. However, the study did confirm that head injury could increase the risk of being diagnosed with this disease later on in life.

Parkinson’s disease could be the result of repetitive head trauma. And most boxers sustained head trauma after every fight.

Head injury is just one of the factors that can lead to Parkinson’s disease. Many other factors can play a part.

Traumatic head injury has a threshold. When it is crossed, it can trigger an early onset of neurodegeneration.

Even though science can’t still figure out the precise causes of Parkinson’s, many neurologists believe that boxing isn’t good for the brain.

It’s especially true if you sustained multiple concussions.

Boxing Can Injure You 

Boxing is a unique sport. The main goal here is to injure your opponent. Unfortunately, the injury can lead to brain damage, especially if the match results in a knockout.

Because boxing can often lead to brain damage, the American Academy of Neurology called for the abolition of boxing as a sport. The organization called it obscenity.

Unfortunately, boxing is a lucrative job. Many boxers, like Muhammad Ali, Mayweather, and Pacquiao, earned millions of dollars every game.

Even the greatest boxers are not immune to head injuries.

Boxing for Fitness 

Can Boxing Cause the Parkinson’s Disease fitness boxing

However, boxing can be safe if you opt for it as a workout. With many celebrities practicing boxing, it has become a popular way to stay fit.

Fitness boxing doesn’t need getting into a ring. And most of all, you won’t take any punches.

In that case, you don’t have to worry about head trauma after every session.

This kind of boxing offers a lot of benefits. For one, it needs you to think. It also requires that you change your position and posture.

Unlike “real” boxing, fitness boxing involves throwing punches at a punching bag.

Is Boxing a Perfect Workout for You? 

No study would confirm that boxing is the best workout you can try. However, it can be an ideal workout if you wish to lose weight.

Intense Cardio 

Boxing is the way to go if you want an intense cardio workout. It can lead to significant weight loss if you do it regularly.

It’s not like running on a treadmill that can get hackneyed after doing it regularly.

Boxing engages your upper and lower body. It trains your cardiovascular system and endurance more effectively than other workouts. It can condition your body to be an energy-efficient machine.

Engaging the Whole Body 

Can Boxing Cause the Parkinson’s Disease power and speed

Boxing is not just about punching. Instead, it involves head movement and footwork.

With that in mind, it can help you develop power and speed.

This workout stimulates the group of muscles you haven’t used before. After training, you will discover the strength that you never had before.

Most importantly, it trains your human heart.

Burning Fats 

With just 15 minutes of boxing session, your body becomes a fat-burning machine. It can show you your prime condition.

After several sessions, you may notice significant weight loss. However, it’s not always the case.

If you are still eating more than your recommended daily calorie intake, then boxing won’t help you lose weight.

In that case, if you wish to lose weight with boxing, you need to pair it with a proper diet.

In addition to burning calories, boxing can help you build lean muscle. With this in mind, you can look ripped.

That’s why many celebrities who want washboard abs are jumping into the bandwagon of boxing as a workout.

Since it is an intense workout, you engage each part of your body while doing those moves. In other words, boxing can target all areas of your body that you wish to improve aesthetically.

Boxing is Fun 

Boxing training includes a lot of fun with your trainer. Having fun is vital in every fitness routine because if you’re bored exercising, you won’t work out again.

Because of that fun in boxing, you are likely to go back to the boxing gym or buy a boxing target to help your eye coordination.

What Boxing Equipment You Need? 

If you think that boxing is great for you as a workout, you might need some pieces of equipment.

You would need a skipping rope, a pair of boxing gloves, or a boxing heavy bag. Check out our boxing department to shop for boxing equipment.

Have You Tried Boxing Yet? 

If you haven’t, then you might want to start training now. It’s worth the shot.

You can use boxing as a way to relieve stress. Every time you throw punches at a heavy bag, you are punching away the things that have been stressing you out.

However, you might want to avoid boxing as a sport. That is if you don’t want to sustain a head injury that may lead to Parkinson’s disease.


Can boxing cause Parkinson’s disease? It hasn’t been confirmed. However, neurologists believe that it can put you at risk of developing this neurological disease.

Are you buying boxing equipment? Please head over to our boxing department here.

After your boxing session, make sure to get a massage. Find out why massage therapy after boxing is a good idea.

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