Boxing is characterized by repeated head contact, and participation results in increased risk of head and brain injury. The occurrence of these injuries is correlated with the number of punches received to the head during training and competition. Furthermore, the number of hits received to the head during competition negatively impacts judging criteria and therefore match results. 

Researchers in Japan have created a motion-capture software system (the FTS, or Fist Tactics Support) specifically designed to measure the number of different types of strikes landed, and the type of defensive movements used when then these strikes are landed.

They conducted a study where 12 male amateur boxers in an experimental group were given feedback on their most recent bout using data from the FTS, and in collaboration with their coaches, specific defensive strategies were practiced in the lead up to their next bout. 12 fighters in a control group carried on with their regular training. 

Using their next match as a comparison (an average of 3.5 months later), the number of strikes received in the control group was unchanged, however the number of strikes received in the experimental group decreased by 24%.

If this software could be developed as a consumer product, it may be useful in providing objective feedback to athletes and coaches, and in doing so decrease the incidence of head trauma, as well as improving competition performance. 


Nakamura, Kouichi, Masaki Uchida, and Tomonori Sato. “Basic research on the primary prevention of boxing-related sports injuries with the development of a quantitative motion analysis software.” Journal of Physical Therapy Science 33, no. 6 (2021): 495-498.

#boxing #headinjury #concussion #tbi #thescienceofstriking #technology #injuryprevention


About the author

Sam Gilbert

Sam Gilbert is a registered physiotherapist with the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) and certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA). He holds a bachelor’s degree in Physiotherapy from Latrobe university (Melbourne, Australia) and a master’s degree in Exercise Science (Strength and Conditioning) from Edith Cowan University (Perth, Australia).

A 3rd Dan black belt in Shinkyokushinkai Karate under the World Karate Organisation (WKO), Sam participated for over 20 years in full contact competition, winning multiple state and national titles, and culminating in a 4th place in the heavyweight division of the Shinkyokushinkai World Cup in 2009.

As the co-founder and clinical director of Club 360, the premier multi-disciplinary health and fitness center in Tokyo, Japan, Sam has combined his practical experience with an in-depth study of sports performance in relation to combat sports, and strives to help other combat athletes reach their full competitive potential, whilst at the same time decreasing injury risk and increasing competition and training potential.

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By Sam Gilbert