Sparring Without Headgear – Disadvantages & Advantages


Sparring is one of the most effective ways to enhance the boxing skill set, and there is a common question raised through this method which people often ask about: “Should you do sparring without headgear?”

If you have the same question, scroll down for further details. 

What Is The Purpose Of Using Headgear In Sparring?

Most people claim that wearing headgear can reduce the brain traumas made by strikes. The aim of using the headgear is to protect the head and face from superficial injuries. Headgear doesn’t help people less likely to get a concussion or protect them from brain injuries. 

During competitive sparring, especially at maximum or near-maximum intensity, headgear will become a very useful assistant to help you avoid bruises and cuts. 

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Wearing Headgear? 

Now, we will go in-depth about the pros and cons of having the overall view about sparring with the headgear.

Pros Of Wearing Headgear: 

Protect You From Bruises And Cuts

The first benefit it brings if you wear headgear is higher protection capacity from bruises and cuts. Apart from smearing a little cream like vaseline and sparring gloves, using a headgear can be the best thing you can do to protect your face in every match. 

It would be best if you use headgear with a proper nose bar. Although they are typically more costly than ordinary headgear, they are worthwhile. Choosing a suitable headgear can help prevent nose breaking – A common accident in boxing.

Prevent You From Having Headbutts

Another important reason which will make you want to purchase a headgear is its protection from headbutts. Headbutts can leave some serious facial damage and which causes many boxers to leave a sparring session with a badly cut eyebrow. 

Although there are some injuries that you can’t avoid, headgear is still extremely useful to protect you from most of them. 

Give You A Sense Of Security

Some research reveals that using headgear will provide you with a sense of security while you are fighting. Especially with beginner boxers, you would likely feel more confident after wearing a headgear. You might see the headgear as armor to protect you from risks, which will encourage your fighting spirit to win the game.

Cons Of Wearing Headgear

Limit Vision

One of the common reasons why boxers hate wearing headgear is that it can reduce the overall vision. Therefore, many people do not use it in sparring. More specifically, you can’t avoid angled punches or some hits due to a block of view from a headgear and vice versa. 

Some boxers claim that there is no use wearing headgear as it is useless in providing protection. According to some researchers, the number of stopped sessions increases when players wear headgear.

Besides, using headgear possibly gives you a claustrophobic feeling of shortness of breath after a hard round. 

Cost You Extra Money

Another reason why wearing a headgear is not a good idea due to its price on the market. No one wants to spend extra money on something they are not sure about its use. Apart from the headgear, you’ve already spent money on other boxing equipment like shoes, gloves, shoes, hand wraps, and mouthguards. 

Hence, this makes the boxing helmet seem quite worthless if you do not know about the benefits it brings.

Does Not Prevent You From Concussions

It sounds funny as many people have a misconception that wearing a headgear will immediately create a granite face; however, the truth will disappoint you. Headgear is not effective in keeping your brain from hitting; it will not minimize the risks of being knocked out. 

Suppose that is the main reason why you want to buy the headgear, unluckily that this helmet will disappoint you. Although this protective gear may reduce the chance of receiving superficial injury risk, you will still receive some injury as it can not completely protect your head.

Give You The Sense Of Security

Do you feel confused as we’ve mentioned it as a benefit? This benefit only for inexperienced boxers who still do not feel very secure while sparring and need an extra sense of security to be more confident in the ring. However, suppose you often spar with headgear regularly. Then you may develop a greater sense of safety, leading to more desire to exchange more punches, resulting in more trauma.

Should You Do Sparring Without Headgear?

Wearing headgear while sparring has clear advantages in protecting your face from headbutts, bruised, or cut like we’ve mentioned above. Headgear is a necessary protective equipment for boxers, especially for competitive fighting.

In contrast, it is also a suggestion for you not to wear headgear while practicing light sparring. Using headgear sometimes limits your overall vision, which will possibly endanger yourself while fighting. Besides, you also need to spend a large amount of money to purchase a high-quality headgear. 

So the answer to this question is yes and no, as it depends on your decision based on the advantages and disadvantages of headgear.

>>Read: Sparring without mouthguard.


Depending on each situation, you need to consider whether it is necessary or not to wear this helmet. Besides, if you want to get a headgear, do not hesitate to purchase a good one. Although it is costly, it will do a better job of protecting your face. 

After reading this article on “Sparring without headgear,” we hope you find your answer, and do not forget to leave a comment about your experience below.

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