What is CTE?

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy

Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is the term used to describe brain degeneration likely caused by repeated head traumas. CTE is a diagnosis made only at autopsy by studying sections of the brain.

It has been known in boxing as Dementia Pugilistica and Punch Drunk since the 1920s.  CTE is the same disease that made headlines when the NFL acknowledged the risk of repeated head trauma in football and set up a fund to help athletes.  Unfortunately in boxing there is no fund. 

There are four stages to CTE, many people suffering from the debilitating disease start to see signs as early as their 40s.  It has been found in athletes including football players, boxers, soccer players, and hockey players as well as veterans and survivors of domestic abuse.  

There may be numerous athletes that never played at a professional level suffering from the effects of CTE.  Unfortunately it can only be diagnosed at autopsy.

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How do you keep boxers safe?  Our training methods are focused on defense, Bad Pads has never had a professional fighter that experienced brain trauma and his techniques are used for all athletes.  Sparring is invitation only and only offered once an athlete has reached the age of 14 and is both mentally and physically ready to take on the contact element of the sport.  We have many youth who train with us and benefit from the self-empowerment and discipline that boxing offers and never move to contact.

Image by Joel Muniz