Sports Science – Can a Woman Punch as Hard as a Man?

This segment is from the program Sports Science. It asks the question can a woman punch as hard as a man? The program conducted an experiment to answer this question. The subject chosen was Lucia Rijker. She is one of the best boxers around. Rijker has often been called “the most dangerous woman in the world.” Lucia explains that it comes down to technique employed. Using more of your arm to punch is inefficient. To conduct the experiment a male boxer at the same weight ( 140 lbs) and height ( 5’6) was used to compare. Both boxers  punched martial arts trainer Julian Rush . He was blind folded and later asked if he could tell the difference between a punch from a man or woman. Rush could not distinguish from either the man or woman’s punch. The second phase of the experiment required measuring the actual force. This time a crash test dummy was used. The male boxer achieved a total of  710 lbs of force. Lucia Rijker generated 922 lbs of force. There is an explanation for this. Her technique is to accelerate her punches to compensate for lower upper body mass. Phrases like “punching like a girl” or “punching like a man” become irrelevant. Technique is just as important as strength. Men do have 20% more muscle mass, which would be an advantage. Males have more upper body strength, but boxing requires more than just that.

Sports Science – Can a Woman Punch as Hard as a Man?

2 thoughts on “Sports Science – Can a Woman Punch as Hard as a Man?

  1. turner says:

    As far as I am concerned,this show shoudn’t be taken as an experiment.What makes things worse though is that there is a whiff of sexism there.
    One may wonder whether a male boxer is unable to use an efficient method of punching.
    Indeed,the female boxer is allowed to punch efficiently,whereas her male adversary is not.Doesn’t it look as if the female boxer is patronized?That being the case,the female participant is treated in a way that suggests that she is inferior. It’s outrangeous!The only consolation is that the organazers of the show were savvy enough not to highlighting woman’s physical prowess through drawing a comparison between the muscular strength of her arm and the one of a man’s thumb,for instance.


  2. stevie says:

    the only thing this so called experiment showed is that a properly thrown left hook is far more forceful than a straight left. Boxers like Tyson made a career out of using that sort of punch. As far as I’m concerned the sex was irrelevant, as an add on, I personally would not like to take a punch from either of the contestants in the film


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