Introducing Combat Sports


Victor Cleere

Kitsap Combat Sports

by Dylan Jackson

Dylan Jackson
Central Kitsap High School

The world of fighting is not all about blood, inducing pain, slamming your opponent to the ground, or any other barbaric misconceptions that may have been perceived from UFC’s “Fight Night”. Just as every culture has different customs it goes the same for fighting.

Boxing, for example is a lot about strategy. It is a mind game relative to chess where two individuals compete to land the most effective punches. According the official web page for the olympics, boxing started in the 7th century. Created by the Romans they would protect their hands with soft leather thongs, that would later be more entertaining with a glove studded with metal. When the Roman Empire fell later in the 17th century England had set out to begin boxing. Amature boxing officially began in 1880. To this day boxing is recognized as a dying sport but is also one of the safest as you either box with 14 oz gloves or 16 oz gloves that are covered in padding.

Martial arts consists of self discipline and strict form for every unique style. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ), this sport focuses on grappling closely related to submission wrestling with choke holds and locks. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is very similar to Judo, a Japanese self defense style. With the help of Mitsuyo Maeda (the original teacher of BJJ) the Gracie family learned the sport over many years from self defense to a competitive sport. Karate has different styles as well like shotokan karate focuses on striking and kicks using the whole body.    

So why not introduce some new contact sports into the schools athletic programs. Nate Larson, a student at Central Kitsap High School says “High School needs boxing, it would toughen up our snowflake generation” as well as responding to my other question if fight sports would reduce school fights. Larson says “Fighting sports would not reduce school fights.” The drama and arguments that people have wouldn’t make a difference with an outlet like boxing.

Like any sports there is a level of skill for everyone. Mark Keel, a coach at Central Kitsap High School says, “It would be tough because where would they start? Regulations would have to be in play, as a sport it would be good, great life lessons to use later in life” this was Keel’s take on how he would feel about boxing being reintroduced into high school sports. Keel also thought it would not reduce school fights as he believes school fights are out of reaction and with that fighting sports would not reduce school fights. Gail Danner, a principal at Central Kitsap High School believes that traditional boxing like in the Olympic games would be an effective sport. When boxers earn points to win not like UFC where it consist of blood and violence.