Boxing’s Mental Health Issue

Charles MacDonald / October 5, 2016 - 5:31pm



This week saw a tremendous advancement in the world of combat sports and mental health.

After a wild weekend of retirement musings, unretirement statements, and admissions of drug/alcohol abuse to offset mental health issues, Tyson Fury came out to share his pain and despair.

It was a significant moment in boxing.

Rarely have we seen a champion, let alone any combat sport professional, publicly admit what many may conceive as a weakness.

It was a tremendous act of bravery that may begin a cavalcade of recognition that warriors like the heavyweight champion are truly human.

The sport of boxing has had many a sad tale of depression and suicide amongst its community.

We lossed tremendous talents within the ring like Randolph Turpin, Freddie Mills, Edwin Valero, and of course Canada’s own Arturo “Thunder” Gatti for example.

Others like Mike Tyson and the UFC’s legendary GSP publicly admitted their own ordeals with respect to their own mental health.

It’s not isolated to the world of rings and cages of course.

But to hear a pugilist, a world champion, whose main public responsibility in advance of a fight is to exude a level of confidence and strength both internally and externally, it is a truly remarkable admission.

In Tyson Fury’s recent interview (in another publication) he shared a vulnerability and genuine fear rarely shared by the men and women of his profession.

It had to be a terrifying admission, showing the world that its champion is battling a tougher opponent outside of the ring.

His friends, family, fans and fellow boxers have expressed their concern over his overall well being.

It’s a great start.

Let’s hope that this young warrior, a world champion, gets the support he needs.

It’s an act of sheer bravery to ask for help.

Tyson Fury is a hero and a true champion in and out of the ring.