BRITISH BOXING BOARD OF CONTROL
RULES OF BOXING
For a full copy of the Rules and Regulations please contact the British Boxing Board of Control
3.1 The opponents in any one Contest must be engaged at the same weight.
Subject as specified herein, the weigh-in shall be conducted in accordance with any directions given from time to time by the Board.
3.2.1 Prior to any weigh-in all arrangements appertaining thereto shall be notified to the Board or Area Council either of which shall have power to disapprove the same.
3.2.2 All Boxers must weigh-in not less than 24 hours or more than 36 hours before the commencement of a tournament. Permission may be granted by the Board for Boxers to weigh-in on the day of a tournament provided that no Boxer reduces weight following the weigh-in.
3.2.3 At the weigh-in, Boxers may wear only those items of clothing approved by the official of the B.B.B. of C. in charge at the weigh-in.
3.2.4 When a contestant is overweight, they are allowed 1 hour from the time of the weighing to achieve the correct weight. If still overweight after such hour, no further weighing is allowed.
3.2.5 The Boxer or their Manager, shall if directed to do so by the official of the B.B.B. of C. in charge of the weigh-in, produce to such official the duly executed Boxer and Promoter contract for the Contest.
3.3 A Referee and Timekeeper shall be appointed by the Board or Area Council to officiate at all contests. For British and Commonwealth Championship Contests, or other such Contest that the Stewards in their absolute discretion deem appropriate, a Supervisor and three Judges to score the Contests will also be appointed.
3.4 All contests shall be decided in a four-rope ring not less than 16 foot nor more than 20 feet square and with the ropes joined together in the centre of each side. The bottom rope should not be more than 14 inches from the floor of the ring to the top of the bottom rope and ropes above this should be no more than 12 inches from centre to centre. The tension of the bottom rope should be considerably less than the tension of the top three. There must be at least an 18 inch margin of ring floor outside the ropes and the floor must be covered with canvas over a safety mat approved by the Board. Each corner should be padded from the top of the bottom rope with one whole length of padding not less than two inches thick and six inches wide.
3.5.1 A Referee shall officiate inside the boxing ring to score the Contest and act as sole arbiter of the Rules of Boxing except for British and Commonwealth Championship Contests, or other such Contest that the Stewards in their absolute discretion deem appropriate.
3.5.2 For British and Commonwealth Championship contests only, or other such Contest that the Stewards in their absolute discretion deem appropriate, three Judges will be appointed by the Board for the purpose of scoring the Contest.
3.5.3 For British and Commonwealth Championship Contests, or other such Contest that the Stewards in their absolute discretion deem appropriate, a Supervisor being a Steward of the Board or Area Council representative will be appointed by the Board for the purpose of collating and totalling the Judges’ scores and attending to any relevant matter pertaining to the Championship contest other than that provided for within these Rules and Regulations being within the authority of the Referee.
3.6 When officiating in the boxing ring the Referee shall wear a clean white B.B.B. of C. approved shirt, a black bow tie and dark trousers and black shoes or boxing pumps. The Referee may wear a jacket or track suit top when officiating at outdoor promotions. The Stewards may exercise their discretion to vary this requirement for special tournaments such as that provided for in Regulation 5.4(b).
3.7 In all Contests the number of rounds shall be specified. No contest shall exceed 12 rounds nor be less than 8 minutes of actual boxing. Rounds shall be of 3 minute duration with an interval between each round of 1 minute. In Contests of 10 rounds or less the rounds may be of 2 minute duration.
3.8 The Promoter shall ensure that a minimum of two doctors, one of whom must be practised in the management of an unconscious or partially conscious patient, who have been approved by the Area Medical Officer, attend at all Promotions. A doctor practised in the management of an unconscious or partially conscious patient must be seated at the ringside at all times during a Contest.
A doctor of their own volition may visit a corner of a Boxer during the interval between rounds in order to assess the medical fitness of that Boxer to continue the contest. In any case where a doctor is concerned as to a Boxer’s fitness to continue the contest, they must signal to the referee to draw their attention prior to the commencement of the next round.
3.9 All Boxers shall be medically examined after the weigh-in or immediately prior to the commencement of the Promotion. Each Boxer must also be medically examined after every Contest. If the examining doctor considers it necessary to do so they shall send a report to the Board or Area Council. A doctor must be available to give immediate attention to any Boxer should this be required.
3.10 The Promoter shall procure that at all Promotions a stretcher is available for use at the ringside. The Promoter shall engage the services of a licensed Ringmaster/Whip whose powers and duties are outlined in Regulation 21.
3.11 No more than four persons acting as Seconds shall be allowed in each corner and only one, who shall be identified as the Chief Second, shall be allowed inside the ring at any one time. The Referee must acquaint themself with the identity of the Chief Second in each contest.
3.12 Persons acting as a Second to a Boxer must wear a clean tee shirt, sweatshirt, tracksuit or traditional style 'seconds' jacket. The wearing of football shirts or regalia is not permitted.
Unless prior permission has been given by the Area Representative or the Steward in Charge to carry other items, the following equipment must be carried by Seconds for use when working in a Boxer’s corner:
(a) Clean white towels
(b) White petroleum jelly
(c) Best quality sterile cotton wool
(d) Sterile gauze in small sealed packets
(e) Orange, Cherry or dental swab sticks
(f) A quantity of Adrenalin made into a 1-1000 Aqueous solution, or such haemostatic as shall have been approved by the Medical Sub-Committee of the Board
(g) A pair of blunt edged scissors
(h) An ice bag
(i) A roll of 1 inch zinc oxide plaster
(j) A quantity of soft bandage
(k) An eye iron
3.14 No stimulant may be given to a Boxer other than cold water sprinkled on the body or used as a mouth wash.
3.15 No boxer shall use any substance for massage or any other purpose on any part of their body which may be harmful or act as an irritant to their opponent before or during the Contest. The discretionary use of Vaseline around the eyes or on the face shall be allowed, but the use of this or other oil or lubricant on the arms, legs or body is not permitted.
3.16 The Boxer, his Manager, or Chief Second must ensure that their correct licensed name is announced by the Master of Ceremonies before the Contest. If an error is made it must be corrected before boxing commences.
3.17 Contestants may wear only boots and shorts approved by the Inspector and the Referee. Male Boxers must be stripped to the waist while female Boxers will wear above the waist a singlet and such protective cover as may from time to time be ordered by the Board.
3.18 All boxers must have available two pairs of boxing trunks of different colours and wear those selected by the Inspector. In cases of dispute regarding a clash of colour the Inspector’s decision shall be final.
3.19 All Boxers must wear underneath their trunks a suitable protector approved by the B.B.B of C. Inspector or official in charge of the Promotion.
3.20 A Boxer is required to wear throughout the Contest a properly fitted gumshield. As a precaution they should bring with them two of these to every contest in which they have to participate. With this exception no other protection may be worn by a Boxer on the body above the waistline except as may be ordered by the Board in the case of female Boxers.
3.21 The official in charge of the Promotion shall ensure that the Boxers have a clean and smart appearance and that all wearing apparel and towels are clean when entering the ring. The wearing of football shirts or regalia is not permitted.
3.22 Bandages are permitted for the protection of hands. These must be 2 inch wide soft bandage and 1 inch zinc oxide plaster. The tape must not be applied over the knuckles.
3.23 Boxing gloves shall be 8 ounces in weight for Contests from Flyweight to Welterweight and 10 ounces for Contests from Super-Welterweight upwards. Breaking by twisting, removal of padding by fingering and thumbing from the potential part of the glove is prohibited. In all female contests gloves shall be 10 ounces in weight. All gloves used under the British Boxing Board of Control jurisdiction must be thumb attached.
3.24 Gloves will only be used in one Contest at a Promotion. Contestants must wear the same make of glove (except in the case of Regulation 22.23). It shall be for the Promoter to ensure an adequate supply of approved gloves is available for every Contest.
3.25 When a Referee is appointed to officiate in a contest in which one of the participants is an overseas Boxer they must interview the Boxer before the Contest in the dressing room. This must be in the presence of the Boxer’s Agent, or an interpreter, and the Inspector, when the Referee must explain to the Boxer the rules of boxing applicable in the Territory.
3.26 The Timekeeper shall ring the bell to start each round (“the Commencement”) and shall call “Corners – 10 seconds” ten seconds before the Commencement and then “Seconds out” five seconds before the Commencement.
3.27 The Seconds must leave the ring when called upon to do so by the Timekeeper and it shall be the Referee’s duty to see that they do.
3.28 Boxers must shake hands before the commencement of the Contest and at the beginning of the final round and must defend themselves at all times during the Contest.
3.29 The Referee shall award a maximum of ten points at the end of each round to the better Boxer and a proportionate number to the other contestant. If they consider the round was even they will then award the maximum number to each contestant.
3.30 Only official score sheets approved and supplied by the Board shall be used by the Referees at Contests. The top copy shall be handed to the Inspector at the conclusion of the Contest and then forwarded, by them, to the Area Secretary or in the case of all Championships and Eliminators for Championships (save of and for Area Championships) to the Board.
Points will be awarded:-
For “attack” – direct clean hits with the knuckle part of the glove of either hand to any part of the front or side of the head or body above the belt.
The “belt” is defined as an imaginary line drawn across the body from the top of the hip bones.
For “defence” – guarding, slipping, ducking or getting away from an attack. Where contestants are otherwise equal the majority of points will be given to the one who does most leading off or displays the better style.
Should a Boxer go down to the floor as the result of a legitimate blow, the Timekeeper shall count off the seconds strictly in accordance with their watch. The opponent shall retire immediately to the furthest neutral corner and neither Boxer shall resume boxing until ordered to do so by the Referee.
In this Regulation 3.32, “down” shall mean one or more of the following:-
(a) when a Boxer falls from the boxing ring beyond the ring apron as a result of a legitimate blow; or
(b) when a Boxer is on one foot or both feet and at the same time any other part of their body is touching the floor of the boxing ring; or
(c) when a Boxer is supported on the ropes of the boxing ring and, in the opinion of the Referee, is unable to defend themself; or
(d) when a Boxer is in the act of rising
and in all of the above cases, a Boxer shall be considered to be down until they regained their feet within the boxing ring and is in a position and a condition to defend themself.
If a Boxer is “down” under the provisions of Regulation 3.32.1(a) they must return to the boxing ring unassisted within twenty seconds. In all other cases mentioned above, they must regain their feet unassisted within ten seconds. The Referee shall not permit a Boxer to continue boxing, if in their opinion they are able to do so, until the expiration of 8 seconds following the knock down.
3.33.1 A Boxer failing to continue with a Contest after the intervals specified above shall not be awarded any points for that round but will have 10 points deducted from their score. Their opponent shall receive ten points and be declared the winner.
3.33.2 If a Boxer regains their feet in the boxing ring within the specified intervals but fails to satisfy the Referee that they are in a position and condition to defend themself, the Referee shall stop the Contest and deduct ten points from this score. They shall award the opponent ten points and declare them the winner.
3.33.3 A Referee shall have the power to interrupt the count where they consider that a fallen Boxer is in need of urgent medical attention and in such cases the opponent shall be declared the winner by a technical count out (T.C.O.).
3.33.4 A Referee may consult the ringside doctor at any stage concerning the fitness of a boxer to continue a Contest.
3.34 If at any time during a Contest the Referee decides in their complete discretion that one contestant is outclassed or is unable to continue as a result of injury, or is not in a position to continue boxing they shall stop the contest and declare the opponent the winner having score the bout in accordance with Regulation 3.33.2.
3.35 In the event of the count being interrupted by the bell signifying the end of a round, the Contest and the count shall continue either until the Boxer who is down regains their feet within the boxing ring when the end of the round is declared, or until after the full count is reached when the Contest will terminate. This shall apply in every round including the final round and any Promoter/Boxer Agreement will be deemed to have included this requirement within its terms.
3.36 Seconds employed in a corner shall not give advice or assistance to the Boxers in such a manner as to cause distraction to either of the Boxers, the Officials or offend others attending the promotion.
3.37 Any person acting as a Second who is in breach of any of the Rules or Regulations, or any order from the Referee, or is guilty of behaviour which, in the opinion of the Referee or Inspector, is detrimental to either Boxer, or preventing them from carrying out their duties, may be ordered from the ringside. When a Referee or Inspector makes such a decision the Second must comply by immediately leaving the area in an orderly manner.
The following acts shall not be permitted during a Contest:-
(a) hitting below the belt:
(b) using the “pivot blow”:
(c) hitting on the back of the head or neck:
(d) kidney punching;
(e) hitting with the open glove, the inside, or the butt or the back of the hand, or with the wrist or elbow;
(f) holding, butting, or careless use of the head, shouldering, wrestling or roughing:
(g) not trying;
(h) persistently ducking below the waistline;
(i) intentional falling without receiving a blow;
(j) failing to break when so ordered, or striking or attempting to strike an opponent on the break;
(k) deliberately striking an opponent when they are dropping to the floor or when they are down;
(l) hitting an opponent after the termination of a round;
(m) unsporting conduct;
(n) any other conduct which a Referee may deem foul;
(o) boxing whilst under the influence of a prohibted substance;
3.38.1 In any of the above cases the Referee shall name the Boxer at fault and call upon them to desist and may in their sole discretion have the power to caution or disqualify a Boxer for any such act with or without reference to any medical opinion.
3.38.2 A Referee may also deduct points from a Boxer’s score for breaches of these rules. They should indicate this to the Boxer, their corner and to the Steward in Charge or the Area Representative present by pointing to the offender, raising a finger or fingers to indicate the number of points deducted and call out the reason for the penalty,
3.39 When ordered by the Referee to “break” both Boxers shall immediately take one step back before re-commencing to box. The parting of Boxers by force should be avoided if possible.
3.40 If, for any reason, a Referee decides that a Contest shall be stopped temporarily, they shall call upon the Boxers to “stop Boxing” and then instruct the Timekeeper to take “Time off.
3.41 In the event of the disqualification of a Boxer the Referee must report the facts to the Promoter or their duly authorised representative forthwith and must send a full report to the Board, or the Area Council concerned within 48 hours of the contest taking place.
3.42 A Boxer who is disqualified by a Referee in a Contest shall not be entitled to receive their purse, other than travelling expenses until the Board or Area Council in whose Area the Contest took place has adjudicated upon the distribution of the same in accordance with Regulation 9.16. The Promoter must forward the purse, or balance of the purse within 48 hours of the Contest, to the Area Council concerned or, in the case of a Championship or Eliminating Contests for a Championship, to the Registered Office of the Board.
3.43 The Boxer’s Manager, or in their absence the Chief Second, shall alone have the responsibility of retiring a Boxer in a Contest. An indication of retirement shall not be given while a round is in progress. In such cases the contest shall be scored in accordance with Regulation 3.33.1 or 3.33.2.
3.44 The Referee shall decide each Contest in favour of the Boxer who obtains the greatest number of points.
3.45 At the conclusion of the Contest both Boxers will be called to the centre of the ring and the Referee shall raise the arm of the winning Boxer. In the event of the winning Boxer subsequently producing a positive dope test result, the contest will be declared a ‘No Contest’. In the event of a draw, the Referee will raise the arm of each Boxer simultaneously.
3.46 At the end of a Contest which lasts the scheduled number of rounds the Master of Ceremonies shall announce the Referee’s final score.
3.47 If, during a Contest the Timekeeper is taken ill at any time before the last round, the Referee shall stop the Contest until another official has been appointed by the B.B.B. of C. official in charge, or the Inspector.
The Referee shall then use his discretion as to whether the Boxers shall continue an unfinished round or declare that round completed.
If for any reason a Referee is unable to continue to act during a Contest the following action shall be taken:-
(a) If a round is in progress the Timekeeper shall ring the bell and stop the Contest.
(b) The B.B.B of C. representative in charge, or the Inspector, shall hand the score card for the Contest to another appointed Referee who shall continue to supervise the Contest from the last completed round.
(c) At the conclusion of the Contest, should it go the full distance, the Referees decision shall be in accordance with the score sheet.
(d) If no other Referee is available the B.B.B of C. representative may appoint the Inspector to act as Referee.
3.49 Promoters shall procure that no persons shall be permitted to enter the boxing ring at any time during a Promotion except with the permission of the Steward or representative in charge. Promoters shall procure further that no press or television photographers shall be permitted to mount the steps or walk on the platform of the boxing ring until the Contest has terminated and the Referees decision has been announced.
3.49.1 There shall be no amplification or broadcast of any statement made from the boxing ring before, during, or after any contest, except by the official Master of Ceremonies with the authority of the Promoter, or otherwise by permission of the Steward or representative in charge.
3.49.2 At the conclusion of a Contest no person shall be allowed to enter the ring with the exception of the MC, the Promoter and Board officials until such time as the ringside doctors have completed an initial examination of both boxers. It will be the responsibility of the Promoter to ensure that this Regulation is carried out.
For a full copy of the Rules of Boxing please contact the British Board of Control