Wednesday, January 22, 2014

How To Reap The Benefits Of Boxing While Avoiding The Pitfalls

For Aspiring Boxers And Those On Their Way Up

Muhammad Ali

They say history is a great teacher. Those who fail to learn from it are doomed to repeat it. There is a lot of truth in those two statements. I've always found that it's better to learn from other people's mistakes and spare yourself the trouble. That's what history is there for - to learn from it and grow into better people.

Partying And Promiscuity

Adrien Broner

Athletes who party and engage in promiscuity pay a price for it in their sporting performance. You cannot live the life of a wild, partying bachelor and succeed in sport. It will catch up with you when it’s time to go to work and you are not at your best. Great managers/coaches in various sports have placed curbs via curfews and fines on their athletes, because they know the human body will not perform at its best when an athlete is out partying, getting drunk and sleeping with various women. It saps your strength, erodes fitness and destroys focus and discipline.

With so many diseases floating around like herpes and HIV, which medical science has yet to release cures for (but good work is being done behind the scenes in this regard) you are playing with your life and health going around having sex with different women. Many people with STDs/STIs don't tell potential partners and end up infecting them (while some simply do not know they are infected and unknowingly pass it on to others).

Money Team boxer, Adrien Broner, had a threesome with two women and made a sextape of it that ended up on the internet. In another incident, there were pictures on a mainstream blog of Broner performing oral sex on a stripper in clear sight of everyone at a strip club (it's a wonder he didn't get scurvy or lockjaw or need a tetanus shot - I'm kidding).

Adrien Broner

Broner, who undoubtedly has a talent for boxing, has also been engaging in partying and excessive drinking and spending his time getting into situations that are bringing him heavy public criticism he is not happy with, such as wiping his butt with money, flushing stacks of $20 bills down the toilet and the aforementioned threesome sex tape, among other things.

All of the aforementioned conduct has been a massive distraction that has taken away from his boxing. His life has become a circus with no ringmaster. Then, he stepped into the ring and lost to Marcos Maidana, in a shock defeat that shook him up. He was no longer undefeated. Broner fled the arena and cried, which was sad.

Broner is a talented boxer and I’m not trying to pick on him, but the sideshow his life has become is too much of a distraction, which is not conducive to winning in the ring. He has to get his mind right and become more settled. Too much chaos in his atmosphere, which destroys focus and waters down ambition. It breeds complacency.

Mike Tyson

Other athletes such as Mike Tyson, who is one of the greatest boxers in history, have gone on record, speaking about the wild living that sent him off track, while men like Don King robbed him left, right and center. Tyson admitted he lost focus at times, due to all the distractions that come with fame and wealth and it cost him plenty.

Your Circle

Floyd Mayweather

Beware of who you let into your circle. Not everyone is your friend. Some women have latched on to boxers deeming them a meal ticket, who will buy them luxury cars, jewelry, designer clothes and expensive purses. They also love the limelight and bragging rights that come with dating a famous man. Avoid women like that. They will bleed you dry and leave if and when the money runs out. You will end up feeling used and made a fool of.

Other folks to watch for are conmen, who try to get on your team, promising you the moon and the stars, but don't deliver. Some people will say anything to get what they want. They will become what they think you need. They will say what they think you want to hear. There are even famous people who've latched on to boxers with negative motive, only to let them down.

Avoid organized crime figures who never have good intentions towards athletes. Their plans for you will be no good. They are dangerous, violent criminals, who will wreak havoc on your life and career, all in the name of self-interest and greed. Avoid them like the plague.

Get a reputable promoter, lawyer and financial manager. Cultivate a good corporate brand. Be a role model. When entering into business deals, read and understand your contracts. If you can’t understand your contracts and have no money for a lawyer, seek the assistance of a local pro bono lawyer/legal service. Know what you are signing. If you are not comfortable, don’t sign it. Then, once you find a good team that meets your needs, stick with them.

Financial Planning

It’s always wise to save some of your money for the future. Life can be full of surprises, so it’s good to have savings to fall back on. Don’t spend all your paychecks at once. Learn to put something aside in a reliable savings account or government insured certificate of deposit. Don’t always assume money will always be coming in.

Manny Pacquiao

Try to start a little business. Choose something sensible and don't put too much of your money into it. Don't jump into business with the all or nothing mentality regarding spending. Start small and try to build up the business in a sensible, sound financial manner. 

Lennox Lewis

I’m not a fan of people granting others power of attorney over their finances. I know sometimes certain situations warrant it, but I still don’t like it. I know a man who lost $150,000 by trusting someone in his circle, whom he granted power of attorney in a limited scope, yet the person wiped him out in tandem with another. All he can do now is sue, but the person already squandered his money on high living with nothing to show for it. There’s nothing to get back. Don’t let that happen to you.

Head Injuries

Muhammad Ali

Blows to the head impact the brain. Muhammad Ali, who is considered the greatest boxer of all time, famously wore out opponents by turning himself into a punching bag and I am of the belief it greatly contributed to him developing Parkinsons.

The brain is delicate. It is a part of the human body that does not easily withstand injury. I am of the belief head injuries sustained in combat, accidents and sports, as well as brain hemorrhages (aneurysm or stroke) greatly increases the risk of developing Parkinsons or Alzheimer’s. People with the aforementioned injuries are more prone to depression and regrettably suicide. It’s crucial that one recognizes the signs of depression early and seek medical treatment and therapy to ward off its effects.

Brain injury leads the body to release distress chemicals that triggers feelings of sadness, confusion, doubt and depression. Basically, it’s a distress signal. Your body telling you there’s a problem. Athletes in contact sports are more prone to depression. Head injuries some boxers sustain contribute to depression. This sometimes leads to drug use, such as cocaine, in failed attempts at feeling better. So, protect your head as best you can.


Not only should you avoid narcotics such as cocaine and ecstasy, you should also shun steroids as well. You don’t want to win that way and performance enhancing drugs wreak havoc on the body. There are some who would supply you with steroids to get in good with you for financial reasons and to control you as well. You don’t need anyone holding that over your head or bringing that kind of stress into your life.

As much as some will tell you the steroids they offer are ahead of the proverbial game and no one will find out, don’t be too sure of it. It’s not worth your boxing career, not to mention distress to your family, friends, supporters, fans and yourself.

The same ones who will offer you performance enhancing drugs to give you an unfair advantage, swearing to you no one will find out or detect it during tests (due to detox, saunas ect..), are the same ones who will turn you in the minute you fail to give them what they want or do what they say. What happens when that same person asks you to throw a fight, damaging your career (betting). Stay away from steroids and those who would offer them to you. They have an ulterior motive. You don’t need to be anyone’s puppet or slave. Be your own independent person.

Work on your strength, stamina and skill. Let that be your winning ticket. And at the end of the day, it’s not the end of the world if you lose a fight. Ali and Tyson, two of the best boxers ever, lost fights. No one in their right mind would question Ali or Tyson's athletic ability or accomplishments in the sport.

Boxing is a chance for you to make something of your life. It's saved many from a life of crime. Properly parlayed into a professional career, it can successfully provide for you and your family, as well as give you great discipline and a sense of pride in what you have accomplished. Make it work for you. Don't allow outside forces to destroy you.