Boxing Ontario is the only governing body for Olympic-Style Boxing in Ontario.

As such, it is affiliated with Boxing Canada (CABA), the International Boxing Association (AIBA) and the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture, & Sport. Boxing Ontario was founded in the fall of 1972 and has seen a steady growth since then. Currently, Boxing Ontario encompasses more than 90 clubs, 900 competitors and approximately 12,000 more recreational members.

In 2010 we moved from a geographic-representational model, to a skill-based board structure.  Along with this, voting power was given to each club, where clubs get between 1 & 5 votes at the AGM.  The number of votes a club gets is dependant on the number of registered members the club has.  This new structure allowed us to elect an executive which was more efficient, while still allowing members across the province to have a voice, and participate in various working committees.

Boxing Ontario Executive members are elected at an annual general meeting. All members are invited to attend, and voting is done by the registered delegates.

Financially, Boxing Ontario functions through club and member registration, fundraising and in large part through the support of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Sport.

Operationally, Boxing Ontario owes a debt of gratitude to all the volunteers who give freely of their time and energies to keep the programs running smoothly.

Mandate

To organize, promote develop interest and participation in the sport of Olympic-Style boxing in Ontario.

Boxing in Canada

Boxing Canada aka the Canadian Amateur Boxing Association (CABA) is the national organization responsible for the development and promotion of Olympic-Style Boxing across the country. The association is comprised of 10 provincial and one territorial association.

History of Boxing in Canada

Amateur Boxing started in Canada in 1892 with the incorporation of the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association. It was also practiced in the armed forces, in the tradition of the British army regimental championships. Amateur boxing did not really come to prominence in Canada until six Canadian boxers attended the 1920 Olympic Games in Antwerp, Belgium, and returned with 5 medals, one gold, two silver and two bronze. Prior to 1969, amateur boxing in Canada was under the supervision and coordination by officers of the Amateur Athletic Union of Canada. With its authority it controlled the amateur status of athletes and officials. It was also represented on the Canadian Olympic Association and the Commonwealth Games Association. In 1968, AAU of Canada was dissolved.

The Canadian Amateur Boxing Association was founded and incorporated under Federal Charter in 1969. The newly formed Association stressed the complete separation and distinction from professional boxing. Priorities were the uniform enforcement of rules, with emphasis on safety and enhancement of competitions, the creation of a formal structure, and the development of officials to the highest national and international standards. Decentralization of jurisdiction eventually led to the creation of Branches, the forerunners of the current Provincial/Territorial Associations. Participation in Amateur Boxing increased by 600 percent over the first 4 years of CABA, with membership reaching 2,175 in 1973.

In 1976, having overextended its resources in preparation for the 1976 Olympic Games, CABA found itself in serious financial difficulties, and lost Federal Government support as well as its head office and all its staff. However the sport continued to grow through the Provincial/Territorial Organizations which received greater autonomy, and whose presidents became directors of CABA. In 1977, CABA reorganized, and a volunteer executive successfully worked towards solvency, while at the same time developing and expanding programs to build new strength at all levels of Canadian Amateur Boxing, and particularly in the area of coaching development and international competitions. Canadian boxers finished first in the 1978 Commonwealth Games with 8 medals (2 gold, 1 silver, 5 bronze), and by 1980 membership exceeded 4,000. CABA became re-accepted by Fitness and Amateur Sport Canada, and received funding again for a head office and staff.

The death of a professional boxer in Montreal in 1980 led to the Federal Government’s Task Force on Boxing in Canada which, while highly critical of professional boxing, gave Amateur Boxing full credit for its exemplary record of safety. CABA received a clean bill of health and initiated a competitors record and medical passport system, uniformly enforced for all amateur boxers in Canada, computerized registration, and strengthened its resolve to maintain its exemplary safety record.

Internationally, Canadian amateur boxers successfully continued on their road to the top. In the 1981 World Cup for Boxing, held in Montreal, Shawn O’Sullivan won Canada’s first World Cup Championships for Boxing, and Canada finished in 4th place with 1 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze medal. At the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games, Canadian boxers finished in 5th place, with 3 medals, and in the 1986 Commonwealth Games, a new National Team finished in first place with 10 medals – 6 gold and 4 bronze. The success of the highly motivated and well prepared Canadian Boxing Team at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games, winning 18 bouts, a gold, a silver and a bronze medal, and finishing in 5th place overall out of 104 competing countries, made Amateur Boxing the top Olympic sport in Canada. It restored Canada’s pride in our athletes, and showed that international excellence can be achieved without drugs, but through talented, dedicated athletes who are given the opportunities and the means to reach their potential. Medal performances by Canadian boxers in Olympic Games continued in Barcelona in the 1992 Olympic Games and the 1996 Games in Atlanta. (See web page on Canada’s Olympic Medalists for Boxing)

And while internationally Canadian amateur boxing became one of the most successful sports, consistently over the past 15 years ranking in the top 10 of all countries and continuously winning medals in all Olympic Games and other major international competitions, at the same participation in the sport in Canada also kept increasing, through its growing number of boxing clubs located in all parts of Canada, through the popularity and quality of it’s programs that allows athletes to reach their potential in a healthy and safe environment, and through through its low cost access for all Canadians, including women, aboriginals, minorities, and newcomers.

A relatively recent development all over Canada is the interest in, and popularity of, joining boxing clubs for recreational and fitness boxing, especially fitness classes using boxing club facilities, equipment, coaches and boxers’ training methods for conditioning, such as the well-known and highly effective boxercise and boxeraerobic programs.

In 2012, AIBA made some drastic changes and essentially rebranded the sport of boxing.  What was formerly known as “Amateur” boxing is now known as AIBA Open Boxing, or Olympic-Style Boxing.  The scoring system was re-vamped, moving away from a controversial computer-scoring system, and back to a more traditional 10-point must scoring system, similar to what we see min professional boxing matches.  The most controversial change in this rebranding has been the decision to remove headgear from Olympic-Style boxing.  Many people feared that this would cause an increase in head-injuries.  Through intense surveillance by medical professionals, it was found that the number of head injuries sustained has been steadily decreasing since in competitions where headgear was not used.

Although head injuries were on the decline, lacerations were increasing.  In some cases, boxers would win a bout, but not be able to continue in the tournament due to the laceration.  A special cream, called Cavillon, was introduced to help combat the laceration issue.  A light film of Cavilon is applied to the face of the boxer, and this acts as a second skin which helps prevent cuts from accidental head contact.  Initial uses of the cream (as of January 2015) have proven to be very effective.  It’s expected that with the use of Cavilon, and as boxers change their styles, lacerations will essentially become a non-issue.

In the 70s & 80s, Canada was seen as a world leader in safety, as we mandated the use of headgear in amateur boxing.  Years later, research has shown that the headgear’s effectiveness was primarily in the area of cuts and lacerations.  It was actually the gloves that were the biggest contributor (equipment-wise) to head injuries.  Technology has evolved to the point where high-quality foam is formed so that the boxer’s fist can’t be compressed as much as normal, minimizing the amount of force that the boxer can generate towards their opponent.   This is why we always use AIBA-approved gloved.

For more information on AIBA, see www.aiba.org

Boxing Ontario Strategic Plan

“Firsts-in-the-World” Accomplishments by the Canadian Amateur Boxing Association:

  • 1970/71 – Canada became the first country in the world to develop stringent medical and safety standards for amateur boxing, and making the wearing of headguards mandatory for all amateur boxing competitors. (The head guard rule was adopted in USA and internatially only in 1984, 13 years later!)
  • 1981 – Canada was one of the first countries in the world to implement a Competitors Record and Medical Passport for all amateur boxing competitors.
  • 1990 – Canada was the first country in the world to make computerized scoring compulsory for all National competitions, and to publish a users manual. (This gave Canadian competitors, coaches and officials a big advantage internationally, where computerized scoring became compulsory in 1991).
  • 1991 – Canada became the first country in North America, and one of the first countries in the world, to sanction amateur boxing competitions between females, and to develop a nationwide female boxing program under modified CABA rules, including National Championships (since 1995) that include females, and a Female National Boxing Team representing Canada internationally.
  • 1996 – Canada became the first National Amateur Boxing Association in the world with its own, continuously up-dated, Internet web site: http.www.boxing.ca., e-mail: *All information provided by the Canadian Amateur Boxing Association
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