Boxing Weight Classes – A Full Explanation

Boxing Weight Classes

Boxing fans that don’t watch boxing much, and even those that do, often wonder about the weight class for boxing. This is natural I think, because boxing tends to only cater to the fighters that are successful at “the moment”. For instance when Muhammad ali was on top, all people were interested in were heavy weights. The same is true for tyson.

The man of the moment right now is “Money” himself Floyd Mayweather.

Boxing weight classes can also be called the weight categories in boxing and boxing weight categories (they will determine the weight divisions in boxing), these terms all mean the same thing. In laymans terms, these phrase are asking to simple questions:

(1) – How heavy is the boxer?
(2) – What weight division does his weight class put him in?

In boxing the weight of a boxer is very important as it determines who he can and can’t fight for the most part. People that have no clue of the weight classes in boxing, can *kind of* be forgiven for thinking that a Muhammad Ali could have fought a Floyd Mayweather.

All this being said I am going to define for you the different weight class for boxing here, so that in future you won’t make the mistake of mis-matching boxers.

Let’s get into the technical aspexcts of this shall we?

First let’s look at the boxing governing bodies, then I will list the 17 weight classes that are accepted by them.

The following recognized bodies are:


WBA stands for World Boxing Association, this is an international boxing organization, that have put together official bouts. They award fighters with the WBA championship at a professional level, it was founded in 1921 as the boxing association and changed its name to WBA in 1962, taking into consideration boxing’s world wide popularity, and inviting ither nations in to join it was originally 13 states


WBC stands for World Boxing Council, they are an international boxing organization. Originallty stablished by 11 countries which were: the United States, Puerto Rico, Argentina, United Kingdom, France, Mexico, Philippines, Panama, Chile, Peru, Venezuela and Brazil.

They came together in 1963 in Mexico City, by invitation of then President López Mateos, to unify all the world commisions and control boxings growth. There are now 161 member countries


IBF stands for International boxing Federation it was initially named the USBA-International. It cam about in 1983, when the president of the United States Boxing Association (USBA), lost his bid to become the WBA president.

In 1999 the then president was accused of taking bribes and racketeering. Since then the IBF has gone on to have the first female president in Hiawatha Knight (1999) and Marian Muhammad (2001), after. Today they are considered one of the top 4 boxing sanctioning bodies.


WBO stands for World Boxing Organization, that recognize professional boxing world champions. You can find their offices in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

WBO started in 1988, after they had disputes with the WBA. This was during a the 1988 anual covention in Isla Margarita, Venezuela. The disputes were over rulings that should be applied.

The WBO was a less respect title for many years. They even disallowed fighters to have the WBO and the other three major titles (IBF, WBA, or WBC) at the same time.

It was not until 2012, that the Japan Boxing Commission (JBC) recognized the WBO.

Now you have an oveview of the governin bodies in boixing you know more than 99% percent of fans, consider your self initiated.

An explanation of the weight class for boxing

Let’s start with a catch weight:

A Brief Explanation Of “Catch Weight”

A catch weight is basically a weight that is not naturally recopgnized within the 17 weight classes, which I will be explaining after this.

The catch weights main purpose is to make the fight fair so that the naturally bigger fighter does not have a weight advantage. An agreement on a middle ground for the weight, two fighters will fight at, will also ensure that the fight will go ahead and protect the lighter fighter from being endangered.

Source: Weight class (Boxing) Wikipedia

The Boxing Weight Classes

Originally there were 8 weight classes for boxing, this has subsequently been increased to 18 different weight classes. You can see them below:

The Different Weight Classes In boxing (Official WBA,WBC, IBF & WBO Classifications)

1 – (Pounds lb 105 – Kg 47.6 – 7.5st) – WBA Minimumweight, WBC Strawweight, IBF Mini flyweight, WBO Mini flyweight – Since 1987

2 – (Pounds lb 108 – kg 49.0 – 7 st lb 10) – WBA Light flyweight, WBC Light flyweight, IBF Junior flyweight, WBO Junior flyweight – Since 1975

3 – (Pounds lb 112 – Kg 50.8 – 8 st) – WBA Flyweight, WBC Flyweight, IBF Flyweight, WBO Flyweight – Since 1911

4 – (Pounds lb 115 – Kg 52.2 – 8 st lb 3) – WBA Super flyweight, WBC Super flyweight, IBF Junior bantamweight, WBO Junior bantamweight – Since 1980

5 – (Pounds lb 118 – Kg 53.5 – 8 st lb 6) – WBA Bantamweight, WBC Bantamweight, IBF Bantamweight, WBO Bantamweight – Since 1894

6 – (Pounds lb 122 – Kg 55.3 – 8 st lb 10) – WBA Super bantamweight, WBC Super bantamweight, IBF Junior featherweight, WBO Junior featherweight – Since 1976

7 – (Pounds lb 126 – Kg 57.2 – 9 st) – WBA Featherweight, WBC Featherweight, IBF Featherweight, WBO Featherweight – Since 1889

8 – (Pounds lb  130 – Kg 59.0 – 9 st lb 4) – WBA Super featherweight, WBC Super featherweight, IBF  Junior lightweight, WBO Junior lightweight – Since 1959

9 – (Pounds lb 135 – Kg 61.2 – 9 st lb 9) – WBA Lightweight, WBC Lightweight, IBF Lightweight, WBO Lightweight – Since 1886

10 – (Pounds lb 140 – Kg 63.5 – 10 st) – WBA Super lightweight, WBC Super lightweight, IBF Junior welterweight, WBO Junior welterweight – Since 1959

11 – (Pounds lb 147 – Kg 66.7 – 10.5 st) – WBA Welterweight, WBC Welterweight, IBF Welterweight, WBO Welterweight – Since 1914

12 – (Pounds lb 154 – Kg 69.9 – 11 st) – WBA Super welterweight, WBC Super welterweight, IBF Junior middleweight, WBO Junior middleweight – Since 1962

13 – (Pounds lb 160 – Kg 72.5 – 11 st lb 6) – WBA Middleweight, WBC Middleweight, IBF Middleweight, WBO Middleweight – Since 1884

14 – (Pounds lb 168 – Kg 76.2 – 12 st) – WBA Super middleweight, WBC Super middleweight, IBF Super middleweight, WBO Super middleweight – Since 1984

15 – (Pounds lb 175 – Kg 79.4 – 12.5 st) – WBA Light heavyweight, WBC Light heavyweight, IBF Light heavyweight, WBO Light heavyweight – Since 1913

16 – (Pounds lb 200 – Kg 90.7 – 14 st lb 4) – WBA Cruiserweight, WBC Cruiserweight, IBF Cruiserweight, WBO Junior heavyweight – Since 1980

17 – (weight unlimited) – WBA Heavyweight, WBC Heavyweight, IBF Heavyweight, WBO Heavyweight – Since 1885

You can now look at the weight classes in boxing as summarized by Box Rec, which is the most popular boxing website online for statistics. Their weight class guide will help you see the weight classes in boxing more clearly without the *squabbling*, between these respective bodies.

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