Lausanne [Switzerland], July 3 (ANI): The International Boxing Association (AIBA) has decided to increase the number of weight categories for men and women boxers, saying that it will allow a greater pool of boxers to fight in divisions they feel "most strong and comfortable" in.
The Men's weight categories will increase from ten (10) to thirteen (13), whilst the women's categories will move from ten (10) to twelve (12). The new weight categories will come into effect from August 1.
"We are hereby pleased to inform you that after the widespread consultation of stakeholders in men's and women's boxing, including the Competition Committee, the Women's Committee and our national federations, the AIBA Board of Directors has voted in favour of amending the weight classes for youth and elite boxers at all AIBA competitions," AIBA stated in a letter to all National Federations.
"We believe this step will allow a greater pool of boxers to participate in the respective weight categories where they feel most strong and comfortable. This innovation will help boxing to develop from grassroots to elite," the letter further added.
The changes have been made for the safety of boxers by ensuring easier weight management and a more level playing field. The minimum weight for men was reduced from 49kg to 48kg. The spread between the first five categories is 3kg, between the 5th and 7th it is 3.5kg, between the 7th and 9th it is 4kg, and between the 9th and 10th is 5 kg, 10th and 12th is 6kg. The super heavyweight category starts from 92kg and has no limits.
The minimum weight for women remains the same at 48kg. However, the spread between the first four weight categories is now 2kg. Between the 4th and 8th it is 3kg, between 8th and 9th it is 4 kg, from the 9th to the 10th it is 5kg, and from the 10th to the 11th it is 6kg. The heavyweight weight class remains the same at +81kg.
AIBA president Umar Kremlev has shown full support of this decision as the reform of AIBA's whole competition structure is in process. (ANI)