ITV started there documentary series Exposure with a look into the world of ‘White Collar boxing’ and the safety issues surrounding this genre of the sport. The documentary focused on the UWCB (Ultra White Collar Boxing) Promotion where they offered aspiring novices an 8 week training camp then a three, two minute round boxing contest in front of there friends and family and a chance to raise money for Cancer research. The documentary had two of there staff go undercover and take part in training, one had some boxing experience and the other was middle age and asthmatic. The documentary attempted to expose faults in the length of training given to the want to be boxers, the matchmaking for the shows and the safety issues to keep the fighters safe. The documentary had many experts give there views on different aspects of UWCB with the majority giving a negative account of this part of the sport.
The show is on the ITV hub if you want to take a look.
There is an old saying ‘you don’t play boxing’ so thinking you are ready to enter the ring after a few weeks is madness, it would take months just to learn the fundamentals of the noble art. I come from the unlicensed scene of boxing which has been diluted into white collar to make it sound more appealing to the masses. Just like the amateurs and professional boxing it comes with its dangers and anyone who enters the ring should be aware them.
But does white collar boxing have a place in the sport? I would say without a doubt yes. I have boxed on and off since I was 11 but never really took it seriously enough until I was 36 which meant I could not fight as an amateur and it would be near impossible to acquire a pro licence.
Unlicensed boxing gave me the opportunity to achieve something at my age that would have been impossible without it and if it is done properly there is a place for this in the sport.
Any decent white collar show now have paramedics at them and in the documentary they mentioned this as there were no doctors present, myself I would much prefer a paramedic than a doctor present if shit got real and I needed emergency treatment. You have a medical before the show starts and you are checked over after as well. Mismatches can happen but if the promoters and matchmakers are any good these should be few and far between.
I do think that the amateur and professional boxing boards are so against white collar boxing because they can not make any money out of the clubs, Boxers or promoters who participate. But there have been a quite a few fighters that have turned over to the pro ranks after fighting in white collar, to name a few we have Midlands Lightweight champ Kane Baker, Idris Virgo, Ishmael Ellis (who also fought as an amateur), Josh Hodgins and last but by no means least ‘The 0 taker' Ben Fields, these are just a few from the Birmingham area.
Boxing is a contact sport so there for is dangerous and should not be entered into lightly, it is not called the hurt game for nothing.
I will say, I am not a fan of ultra white collar boxing as I think you can not teach anyone how to box in 8 weeks, If you have fought on UWBC show please don't try to tell anyone you are a boxer. ‘Ultra Events' also includes Ultra Mma, Ultra darts, Ultra comedy, Ultra adventures and last but not least Ultra ballroom. You do raise money for charity which is raised by you making a fund me page for cancer research. UWCB is an experience and not really a fair depiction of boxing and seems to be driven by money for the promoter.
My only advice to anyone who is looking to compete in boxing is if you are young go to a good amateur club and learn it the correct way. If you do want to go down the White Collar route make sure you go to a gym with a good reputation and a promotion company with the same.
In my opinion White Collar boxing does have a place and will have for many years to come.
I would like to say that the documentary came across as a one sided view of white collar boxing and only gave the promoters reply in passing at the end of every segment.