Boxing Still Required For Cadets In Spite Of Concussions

An article by The New York Times shows that in spite of concussions caused by boxing, military academies are loathe … Continued

Boxing Still Required For Cadets In Spite Of Concussions

An article by The New York Times shows that in spite of concussions caused by boxing, military academies are loathe to cut the requirement. Boxing has been a staple at military academies since the early 1900s when it was incorporated into the curriculum at West Point and is used to teach cadets courage and composure under stress. However, the concussions students sustain while training may have the opposite effect.

“Whatever benefit a cadet gains from boxing, the cost of missing studies, of missing training, of becoming more vulnerable to injury down range, are detrimental to military readiness,” said Brenda Sue Fulton, a West Point graduate and chairwoman of West Point’s Board of Visitors. “It’s possible by trying to prepare our cadets, we are making them less ready.”

One out of every five concussions at West Point and one in four at the Air Force Academy are a result of boxing, and this school year, a quarter of all concussions at the Naval Academy were caused by boxing, more than twice as many as football. In the last three academic years, West Point has had 97 documented concussions among students, the Air Force Academy reported 72, and the Naval Academy had 29.

James Clark

James Clarkis the Deputy Editor of Task & Purpose and a Marine veteran. He oversees daily editorial operations, edits articles, and supports reporters so they can continue to write the impactful stories that matter to our audience. In terms of writing, James provides a mix of pop culture commentary and in-depth analysis of issues facing the military and veterans community. Contact the author here.

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