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Cover Design by Bill Brown
Blows to the Head

How Boxing Changed My Mind

Update for Summer 2020:
Paperback edition released!!!
Check out my Blog on this site for  the exclusive afterword!

SUNY Press


SUNY Press


"I peered through the Venetian blinds in our den, with its view of the playground next door, and watched mournfully as the popular girls played softball. I wanted to run fast, hit hard, and wear a cute uniform. These girls seemed to know something about life that I didn't."

When Binnie Klein took up boxing in her midfifties, the reaction from friends and acquaintances was always the same: "You?" Why, after all, would a middle-aged Jewish psychotherapist with no previous history of athletics take up boxing? In Blows to the Head, Klein offers a provocative tale of an unlikely contender whose unexpected fascination with boxing takes her beyond the ring and leads her back to her roots and to a surprising chapter of the Jewish immigrant experience. With candor and wit, she reveals a series of memories and insights that would never have been possible if she hadn't been drawn toward a pair of boxing gloves during a physical therapy session. In a story that will captivate and inspire women and men, athletes and nonathletes, Klein shows us that if we turn over the "weird stones" on our path, the ones we usually ignore, we may find ourselves on an unexpected journey that will summon vitality back into our lives.

Cover Design by Bill Brown




"Fascinating, surprising, and impossible to put down for a nano-second."


-Caroline Leavitt (Pictures of You)

" inspiring poetic and psychologically astute chronice of how - in her mid fifties - this unathletic brainy psychotherapist finally found a strong, quick-footed and powerful way to triumph over her past. It's impossible not to be engaged by Binnie."


-Susan Shapiro (Speed Shrinking, The Bosnia List)



"Reading Binnie Kelin's elegantly literary, funny, philosophical, moving, and endlessly intriguing a wonderful discovery."


-Katharine Weber (True Confessions, Triangle)



"...wildly engaging, thoughtful, human, impossible to entering into the most marvelous conversation with a delightful new friend."


- Rikki Ducornet (Netsuke)

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