Posted by: John W. Zimmer
Under: Boxing
2 Oct 2007

I was watching TV last night and found the Toughman contest on the Best Damn Sports Show. I didn’t know it came back from the 80’s. As I was watching the matches I remembered what I did not like about amateurs trying to box – they cannot fight! Sure they can inflect damage and some of them have some boxing skills, but on balance they do what I call “Beer Muscle!”


Beer muscle is what I use to call people in the bar’s that had a few beers and got really brave. They would fight if provoked, easily! As a bouncer in my young days, I would have to break up fights in the bar. I noticed that many of the aggressive “beer muscle” combatants could not fight their way out of a paper bag!


I would ask some of these combatants why they got into a fight and they would just say the A??h??? had it coming. I pointed out they could not fight and they would growl at me.


My comparison of toughman to beer muscle is fair I think, because neither the drunk bar patrons nor most of the toughman contestants were trained fighters… they just had the desire. While the toughman contest I saw generally used boxing rules – calling toughman boxing is a very loose generalization of boxing.


My opinion of toughman is that it is real fighting between untrained fighters. The lesson I can see from toughman is that having the desire to fight is only part of the battle (forgive the pun). A person that wants to fight or defend themselves should also take up a fighting discipline as a hobby and learn the ropes. It was fun to watch the “boxers” in the toughman contest run out of steam in the second round :-) 

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4 Responses to “Toughman!”

  1. Big John Hurst Says:

    That is what Toughman is for, it is not for the skilled or trained fighter. It is for the bar brawler, the bully, the A$$hole neighbor and so on. It is for intertainment purposes only. It might not appeal to the trained boxer, but the husband on the couch, the office geek who will never get the chance to say. I fought on TV. Millions of people watched me get my a$$ kicked or millions of people saw that I am the best damn toughman in my State or area that had the balls enought to get infront of that many people and fight. You arent out of line with your blog. I just thought I would shed some light from a Toughman fighters point of view.

  2. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Good points John,

    I was looking at the rules and it stated that you could not fight if you have had over 5 sanctioned regular boxing matches in the last 5 years. I have respect of anyone with the cajones to get into the ring and put it all on the line.

    Sorry if I came off as elitist :) but after spending a couple of years as a bouncer – I know how tough some guys are… Some of my partners, John West, and Mark Rey were the kind of guys that after putting in a full week at the ship yards – would then fight for paychecks! Talking about by trial by fire… you would not have caught me risking my hard earned money to be the guy of the week – but as I said – I have a lot of respect for a good fighter – whatever venue he may fight in.

    Take care,

    John W. Zimmer

  3. Joe Scarafone Says:

    Good comments, great web site. John, can you build me a website?

  4. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hey Joe,

    I just emailed you a response and I’ll be glad to help any way I can.

    Take care,

    John W. Zimmer