Everything you need to know about the rules of bare-knuckle boxing.
Everything you need to know about the rules of bare-knuckle boxing as followed by Bare-Knuckle Fighting Championship.
BKFC is one of the sport's biggest promotions and many smaller promotions follow how they run their shows, much like how regional promotions look up to the UFC or Bellator. But with a sport still so unknown by many fans, we thought we'd share the ruleset so there are no surprises going forward.
Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship rules
These rules were taken directly from the BKFC rule book.
- Fighters can wrap and tape the wrist, thumb, and mid-hand. No gauze or tape can be within 1 inch of the knuckles.
- Fighters will “Toe The Line” There are two lines, three feet apart, in the center of the ring where the fighters will start each round. The front foot will be on the line, and then the referee will instruct the fighters to “Knuckle Up” This means the beginning of the round/bout.
- In a clinch, the fighter may punch his way out with an open hand. If there is a three-second lull in action while clinching, the referee will break up the fighters.
- If a fighter gets knocked down, he will have 10 seconds to return to his feet, or the referee will stop the fight. You are NOT permitted to hit a downed fighter. If you do you will be disqualified, and your purse may be withheld. While a fighter is downed, the other fighter will be instructed to report to a neutral area.
- If a fighter is cut, and the blood is impairing the fighter’s vision, the referee may call a timeout a give the cutman 30 seconds to stop the bleeding. If the cut cannot be controlled and the blood inhibits the fighter’s vision, the referee will stop the fight and award victory to the other fighter.
- Fights are two minutes per round and each bout will be five rounds long.
- Attire: All fighters must have a groin protector with a cup, a mouthpiece, boxing trunks, and boxing/wrestling shoes.
- All fighters are expected to give 100 percent effort and behave with complete sportsmanship.