Sparring headgear pros and cons

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment Discussion' started by snakeybizz, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. snakeybizz

    snakeybizz Purple Belt

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    [​IMG]

    my line of work means I can't go in with black eyes or cuts or anything like that...aside from that I'm very concious about brain health and like the idea of wearing a head guard in mma sparring for extra protection...head gear combined with strict technical sparring only seems like a smart way to train.

    a lot of people who I train with say it has absolutely no benefit with regards to reducing head impact and some think it even makes it worse...is the any evidence to back these claims up?

    what are the pro's and con's to wearing headgear in your opinion?
     
  2. fmeffects

    fmeffects Yellow Belt

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    Well AIBA doesn't use headgear anymore, they say that it is safer by reducing concussions and forcing fighters to protect their heads more.

    But in my experience the prose are: it protects my nose and from black eyes and cuts. For the cons: it impairs my vision a little bit and I'm having a false sense of security. I'm getting less defensive especially when using facesavers. But I rather use one than going to work with a busted face.
     
  3. Uchi Mata

    Uchi Mata Preaching the gospel of heel hooks and left kicks

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    It's certainly useful for reducing surface abrasions and bruising (black eyes), so it's helpful if you spar and have a professional job. Will it keep you from getting a concussion if you take a really hard shot to the head? Probably not. But it definitely reduces some impact, and if you're sparring smart and not going full Diego Sanchez I think it's useful for taking the edge off. If you are going to use it, buy good quality stuff. Just don't forget about head movement, you're not wearing an F1 helmet.
     
  4. snakeybizz

    snakeybizz Purple Belt

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    thanks guys you've sold it to me!...gonna invest in one
     
  5. DC413

    DC413 Orange Belt

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    Good points. Headgear is definitely worth it if you are trying to reduce bruising and cuts. As far as concussion protection, I think the current research is still fairly inconclusive on that. Often times head gear leads to you getting hit MORE, due to obscured vision and it making your head a bigger target/making slipping less effective.

    Again, the key is to spar smartly and to use headgear if you want to prevent cuts/bruises.
     
  6. cakemuncher

    cakemuncher Black Belt

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    Other big pluses are that it protects the jaw and ears.
    The nose is not fully protected, but that depends on the model.
     
  7. snakeybizz

    snakeybizz Purple Belt

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    the model I linked appears to be a face saver, so its not possible to be hit on the nose by the looks of it
     
  8. TylerRyan

    TylerRyan Blue Belt

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    I'm in the anti-headgear camp. Yes, the padding can help protect against bruising/nose damage, but they seem to increase concussions/brain injury.

    Recent studies indicate that headgear increases the change of concussions, which is why the AIBA has removed headgear from competition.

    Headgear isn't going to protect you from the rotational effect of your skull twising about the neck (think the effect of hooks), which is what causes the brain to rattle around in your noggin.

    Likely compounded by the possibility that people might go harder if you're wearing headgear, and you might not become as good at defending if your head is "protected" by padding. I dunno.

    Mind you, going into work with black eyes/broken nose/blah blah blah isn't really a problem for me. Brain injury, however, does concern me.

    If you really can't go into work with black eyes or cuts, get headgear I guess. I mean, there's always a chance of concussion, headgear or not, but at least the headgear will protect from visible damage.
     
  9. GoatyP

    GoatyP Blue Belt

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    For me, no headgear equates to cuts, bruises and headaches. I believe headgear reduces the impact but makes you a bigger target and obscures your vision.
     
  10. Foppa21

    Foppa21 Black Belt

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    Cuts and bruises (though I still get the odd scrape)

    I don't think it helps in the concussion stakes, I think all that it doesn't help and all, and if you're to believe some out there, increase the risk as it increases the mass of your noggin so when you get hit, the force is greater. (I guess under f = ma).
     
  11. GFG

    GFG Green Belt

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    i heard rumors they are looking into the idea of bringing headgear back as to many fighters have to pull out of amateur tournaments due to cuts now.

    Gorilla headgear
    Mike
     
  12. fmeffects

    fmeffects Yellow Belt

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    Interesting. It does make sense as well.
     
  13. GFG

    GFG Green Belt

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    that is just what i heard from a local boxing coach as he was talking about a local fighter who had to pull out of a gold medel match in a tournaments somewhere because of a cut he got in his match the day before, i remember that sucks bud if you only had headgear, which totally sucks for him. so i can see them rethinking it if enough stories like that surface.
     
  14. Romulas

    Romulas Orange Belt

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    I always wear head gear to prevents cuts and scraps (especially if you're in a cage).

    I like Rival the best. It doesn't impede my vision and the suede liner prevents it from sliding around.
     
  15. TheReaper

    TheReaper White Belt

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    The only knockdown I've suffered in fighting/sparring was wearing headgear. It prevents you from properly guarding your head, as well as taking away a lot of peripheral vision which leads to knock downs and concussions. If you're worried about cuts just throw on some vasoline. A girlfriend that can apply some make-up for bruises is also great if you are in a position where you can't show bruises like me.
     
  16. HeyBoone

    HeyBoone Brown Belt

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    I suspect that the headgear does very little in terms of dampening the force of a strike to the head but it does prevent a lot of superficial damage to the face and possibly the nose as well depending on the style of head gear.

    Like others have said it can limit your vision leading to getting hit 'out of nowhere' and also gives that false sense of security leading to getting hit more.

    I am a fairly terrible boxer having trained for roughly 4 months but I do have trouble sometimes with my line of sight and also the headgear can shift form time to time requiring adjustments on the fly.

    In my gym we are required to wear headgear when we spar but in terms of brain damage i doubt it does a whole heck of a lot.

    One last thing to note is that with the protection over the ears I think it tends to help taking punches in the side of the head because without protection shots directly over the ear can possibly mess you up forcing air into the ear or something like that. I could be wrong here but I do recall hearing that somewhere.

    I plan on buying my own headgear but I don't expect it to save my brain, which is my main concern with training. I don't care so much about my nose (which is screwed already) or cuts I just want my brain to be healthy (I have a profession that requires brains).

    Like you said you should just train smart and don't be afraid to make it known that you want to spar for technique and not get into a gym war just to be 'alpha'.
     
  17. cakemuncher

    cakemuncher Black Belt

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    In one of my ex gyms a guy had his jaw bone broken in half with a heavy punch. Had he warn a headgear this would not have happened. Headgear adds a lot of structure and protection to the jaw.

    Nonetheless, the best protection is controlled sparring with non-psycho people. :)
     
  18. Ippwnage

    Ippwnage Banned Banned

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    you think the kid you are selling a happy meal gives a fuck about your two black eyes?
     

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