Boxing isn’t just a popular sport to watch. More and more people are also realizing the strength training and cardiovascular benefits of the sport and are incorporating it into their exercise routines. However, not everyone may know about the interesting history behind the sport. If you’re thinking about trying boxing, here’s what to know about its origins and evolution.

Ancient Times

According to historians, boxing dates back to as early as 1500 BC on Crete Island. However, the sport first appeared as an Olympic event in the 23rd Olympiad in 688 BC. The matches were executed on open plots and ended when one of the opponents sustained serious injuries.

Contestants wore thin, leather straps around their hands and wrists for protection. The winner of the fight typically received gold, livestock, or other trophies.

By the 4th century BC, the straps fighters wore on their hands and wrists were made of harder leather for added protection. The Romans later put copper and iron brackets on the straps. When the Roman Empire collapsed, these fights ceased for several centuries.


The sport made a comeback in the late 1600s in London and included bare-knuckle fighting. There were no rules, weight divisions, or referees, so the sport was still considered primal at this time.

boxingThe first official boxing rules were created in 1743 by Jack Broughton to reduce the number of deaths in the ring. Fighters who were down had 30 seconds to recover, and grasping below the waist was forbidden.

Modern Day

Boxing attracts young and aspiring athletes to this day, but the rules are drastically different than they were in the past. Boxers nowadays have better protective equipment, including gloves and earpads, and have to abide by more rules.

For example, they can’t hit with their head, shoulder, forearm, or elbow. Contestants also are forbidden from punching their opponent’s back, back of the head, or neck.


If you want to try boxing, stop by Against The Ropes Boxing in Chandler, AZ. The trainers at this gym offer boxing classes and have a passion for helping their clients get in top shape. If you’re feeling sore and stiff, you can also enjoy a relaxing massage by one of the facility’s skilled therapists. For more information about their services, call (480) 590-3242 or visit their Facebook page.