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Impact Of Lockdown On Boxing In Ireland

Lockdown has been a dark period of time in the lives of many. The restrictions introduced by the government have affected boxing around the world. As a result, other industries such as physical and online casinos in Ireland have needed to adapt. We explain the impact of lockdown on boxing.

How Quarantine Has Affected Boxing

Quarantine has affected both professional and amateur boxing in a variety of ways. Large events have been postponed frequently. During the time that events can go ahead as planned, there have been a series of strict rules to follow, including:

路        Public crowds are not permitted.

路        Boxers must test negative for COVID prior to the fight.

路        Social distancing wherever possible.

路        Masks worn by those not participating in the bout.

While these guidelines may seem like an inconvenience, particularly the removal of spectators, they are essential for safety. Without them, events would have paused completely throughout each lockdown.

In addition, quarantine has had an impact on local Irish boxing. With the intermittent closure of gyms, there has been nowhere to hold training sessions. Passionate amateur boxers have resorted to buying punching bags, or other equipment, to set up at their home.

Preparing Boxers For Championships During A Pandemic

For those at the top of the sport, staying in a routine has been crucial. Throughout the pandemic, boxers have been looking for ways to train consistently, while also following the law. Here are a few methods they鈥檝e used to prepare for championship bouts:

路        Forming A Bubble 鈥 Some boxers were fortunate enough to be a part of a support bubble with their trainer. A few professionals live with their trainers, which also allows face-to-face training sessions to be conducted.

路        Personal Gyms 鈥 Whether that be a makeshift gym in the garage, or a boxing club owned by the professional, personal gyms can still be used. Some well-known boxers, such as Tyson Fury, have built gyms for public use. During lockdown, these were off-limits to everyone except the owners.

路        Apps – Nowadays, there are many applications to assist with exercising. Paired with the likes of Zoom or Skype, you can perform a full workout with your trainer present. It鈥檚 not exactly the same as an in-person session, but boxers still reap the benefits.

On top of this, at-home workouts are factored into daily life. Exercises such as push ups, dumbbell curls, planking, squats and even running are perfect for staying active. Light bag work and shadow boxing can also be used to increase stamina and replicate a bout.

How Boxers Prepared For The 2020 Olympics

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics was rescheduled and instead, commenced on Friday the 23rd of July 2021. This meant that boxers and other athletes could get back into their pre-lockdown regime before the start date. Gyms in Northern Ireland reopened officially on the 10th of July 2020, giving boxers approximately 1 year to resume training (following the event rescheduling). Irish Boxers in the Olympics took full advantage of this training period. Aidan Walsh, Kurt Walker and Kellie Harrington all showed strong performances. Kellie did particularly well, securing a gold medal for Ireland! 

How The Pandemic Has Impacted Other Sports

Obviously, it鈥檚 not just the boxing industry that has struggled throughout the pandemic. COVID has had a damaging impact on many other sports and activities. Below is a selection of some that have been negatively affected. 

Football

The most popular sport in the world was hit hard by Coronavirus. Perhaps the biggest impact was fans no longer being able to attend stadiums. As a result of this, matchday revenue for all clubs was significantly reduced (or completely eliminated). Teams were also allowed to make 5 substitutions, instead of the usual 3. This change has since been made permanent by the IFAB.

Darts

Darts was a sport that faced a large number of event cancellations. The 2020 World Grand Prix and 2020 European Open are two tours that had to be held behind closed doors. Online tournaments were introduced, where professionals would go head-to-head from their own houses. The board would be livestreamed, with a referee keeping track of the scores. These tournaments were mainly for entertainment purposes however, with a small cash prize being presented to the winners.

Golf

It鈥檚 very much the same situation when it comes to golf. The one main difference is that golf was one of the first sports to be given the green light. Due to the socially distant, outside nature of the sport, professionals could soon resume their usual training patterns. Hobbyists could also get back on the green!

Other Things To Do At Home During Quarantine

While the very mention of the word 鈥榪uarantine鈥 is enough to scare people, being prepared for all outcomes is key. Having a list of other activities to spend your time on can keep you feeling productive, or entertained at least. Here are a few things you could consider, split into relevant categories:

Entertainment

Being entertained will help you to keep your mind from dwelling on the isolation period. It will also ensure that time moves much quicker, so that you can get back to daily life. Playing at an online casino in Ireland is a popular way to cure boredom. Some of the games you could try include:

  • Online slots such as Starburst and Book Of Ra.
  • Blackjack, Baccarat and other table games.
  • Live casino games, like Dream Catcher and Crazy Time.

Relaxation

Staying relaxed is important for combating the anxiety and stress associated with self-isolation. Make sure to take some time to chill, by indulging in one (or more) of the following:

路        Meditation or breathing exercises

路        Start putting together a puzzle

路        Listen to your favourite music

路        Plan and start a home workout

Productivity

This one isn鈥檛 for everyone. However, some people will feel completely fine within themselves when isolating. For a select few, it will be the lack of productivity that gets them down the most! Stay focused and motivated with a few tasks:

路        Learn a new skill by using a book or online course

路        Clean your home or organize your wardrobe

路        Practice your writing skills 

Final Thoughts

Lockdown has had an impact on boxing, sports in general and online casinos. Luckily, the rebound has been swift since restrictions were lifted. Hopefully this momentum persists and Irish boxing can continue to grow!

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sports for a living for over 20 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com

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