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Boxing 4

Image credit: Andrew Tan/SportSG

Boxing can be confusing, with all the terms used to describe the different moves during a bout. Here are some of the most essential terms you will need to know.


A bout refers to a match, normally meaning an organised fight in a playing area.


Clinching refers to the act of leaning excessively on the opponent for support. If both boxers are clinching, the referee will call for a break.


As its name suggest, a combination is a series of punches thrown in quick succession.


A knockdown happens when a boxer falls to the ground of the boxing ring as a result of a blow from the opponent. The boxer has to have at least one part of his body other than his feet on the ground for it to be considered a knockdown.

Knock Out (KO)

A knock out is an automatic win for the opponent, and refers to a player being knocked down for more than 10 seconds. The referee will start counting down from 10 once a player has been knocked down, and the player has to regain his position in order to continue the round.

Low Blow

As its name suggests, a low blow is a blow below the belt. A low blow can result in a foul.

Neutral Corner

A neutral corner refers to the corner that a boxer has to retreat to after he knocks down his opponent. This is different from the assigned corner that each boxer has to go to during breaks.


Parrying refers to the act of blocking a blow from the opponent using the glove.


A ring is the playing area of the match, and is often a raised platform with ropes on all four sides.


A match is made up of several pre-determined number of rounds. Each round lasts three minutes, with one minute breaks between each round.

Split Decision

A split decision refers to two out of three judges scoring one boxer as the winner, while the third judge named the opponent the winner.

Standing Count of Eight

The referee might pause the round and count to eight if he notices a boxer looking unwell or hurt, even if the player has not been knocked down.

Technical Knock Out

A technical knock out occurs when one of the boxers is deemed too unwell or hurt to continue fighting, despite the fact that he is still standing. This can be preceded by a standing count of eight before the other boxer is declared the winner.  

Weight Classes

Boxing matches are divided into different classes based on the weight of the boxers, in order to make a  match fair. There are 17 alphabetical weight classes in boxing.

Weigh In

A weigh in occurs before the match takes place, and refers to weighing both boxers in order to ensure they are  suitable to fight in their weight class.

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