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The boxing punching bag is one of the most important training equipment for combat and cross-fitness training. Performance in boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thay and MMA specifically depends on your punching bag training.
Benefits of Boxing Punching Bags
Boxing punching bags are great for cardio workouts and combat training. They enhance the skill level and technique. At the same time, these bags help condition your muscles and shape your body. Punching bags are not only a combat training aid, regularly working up a punching bag has multiple health and fitness benefits too. They are an ideal way to relieve stress and help a great deal with anxiety, depression, stress and anger management.
Types of Punching Bags
Punching bags are available in multiple types. These types vary in shape, weight as well as sizes. Each type focuses on a specific training area, refining and polishing the technique and skill level of the athletes. Here are the main types of punching bags available in the market. You will find many of these bags in the professional gyms and boxing/kickboxing/MMA clubs.
1- Heavy Bags
Heavy bags are the most dynamic and versatile among the boxing punching bags. They can be used with boxing as well as kickboxing gloves. As the name indicates, these bags are heavy, robust and strong. Usually ranging from 3 to 6 feet in length, these bags are where the training starts yet never ends. No matter how senior and expert a combat athlete is, a simple heavy bag will always be a significant part of their training. Heavy bags tend to be the most reliable as well as versatile. Hang them with a stand, on the wall, to the ceiling or anywhere you find feasible. These hanging bags move when hit, which ideally trains you for actual fights. It improves your footwork, positioning, agility, and strength all at the same time. It refines your punching technique while building stamina and endurance.
2- Freestanding Heavy Bag
A freestanding heavy bag is exactly that. Freestanding! You do need to hang this bag. Freestanding bags come with a heavy base. They do not take much room as you can conveniently place them anywhere. Freestanding bags are portable, thus, a great choice for home gyms. These bags are versatile and durable. Improve your punches, kicks, footwork, and technique with this portable, multipurpose bag. The only drawback is that the resistance comes from the base. The bag itself is not very heavy and does not offer very good resistance. You must weigh down the base with a heavy filling like sand or water.
3- Double End Heavy Bags
Double-end heavy bags are also called angled double end bags. These heavy bags have two dramatic angles with an inward bend somewhere in the middle. Double-end heavy bags mimic an hourglass shape. These bags are usually for professional fighter and athletes. They are ideal for practicing head-body combinations due to their unique shape. Refine your defensive skills and practice a variety of combinations with double-end heavy bags.
4- Angled Heavy Bags
Angled heavy bags feature a unique design with a broad top and slim lower portion. Although not a must-have for combat training, these bags are especially for uppercuts, straight punches, curl punches, hooks, body shots and elbow strikes. These bags are for professional combat athletes to practice and refine their skills. MMA and Muay Thai professionals more commonly use angled heavy bags.
5- Uppercut Bags
Uppercut bags, as the name indicates, specifically focus on uppercut practice. Mount the uppercut bag to a wall bracket or ceiling, depending on their shape and size. This bag is for serious boxers and MMA athletes. Practice focused uppercuts along with hooks, jabs, cross punches and more with this professional uppercut heavy bag.
6- Tear Drop Bags
Teardrop bags are ideal to practice and improve speed, accuracy, and timing. This rather small bag is lighter than a traditional heavy bag. Therefore, it swings much more, making it ideal to practice head movement for defense. Teardrop bag is quite a useful piece of training equipment to practice close punches, uppercuts, hooks, and headshots.
7- Maize Bags / Headshot Bags
A maize bag/ headshot bag is also called a wrecking ball bag. It is a small round bag to hone in body and headshots. Practice your footwork and movement along with hand-eye coordination with a maize bag. This is because they swing a lot requiring you to bob and weave around.
8- Speed Bags
Speed bags are small tear-shaped, air-filled bags, usually anchored to a platform parallel to the ground. These lightweight bags rebound when hit. Speed bags are ideal to practice focus, hand-eye coordination, and speed by improving reflexes and response time. They help develop a strategic rhythm and tempo. At the same time, they condition the body and help develop lean, strong muscles.
9- Traditional/Mexican Double End Bags
Traditional double end bags are small circular bags connected at both ends to the ceiling and floor with adjustable elastic cords. The adjustable rebound elasticity of these bags allows you to practice a myriad of punching workouts. Double-end bags let you practice rhythm, accuracy, and timing. At the same time, they let you experience missed shots and train you for real fights.
Boxing punching bags enhance your skill level and technique. They are a great way to build stamina and strength. At the same time, these bags help with muscle development as well as body toning and conditioning.
Things to Consider When Buying a Punching Bag
A punching bag might seem a rather simple piece of training equipment, yet, it holds a significant place in the combat and fitness training routines. When you buy a bag, it is crucial that you understand some basics and choose a bag that is relevant to your specific needs. Here is what you need to know when buying a punching bag.
1- The Reason for Buying the Bag
The first thing is to understand the reason why you are buying a punching bag. Most of the features of the bag including the shape, weight, and size depending on usage.
2- The Right Weight and Size
Ideally, a heavy bag half your own body weight is the best choice. Four feet is the ideal heavy bag size for cardio as well as combat. However, both the right size as well as weight for you depend on how you plan to use the bag. Smaller, lightweight bags are more suitable if your workout is all about punching. The swing will let you practice footwork as well as multiple angles and directions. At the same time, you will defensive lean head movements. Go for a larger, bag if your workout includes kicking too. Heavier bags with minimal swing are only suitable for strength building and enhancing the punching power.
3- Choose the Right Shape
The shape of the bag depends on your training level. A traditional heavy bag is the beginning of every kind of training. It will always remain a significant part of your routine too. However, depending on your skill level and training type you want to focus, you may add more professional bag types to your routine. Read above to know which bag is suitable for your specific skill area and choose accordingly.
4- Go for Durable Material
Once you have decided on the shape and size, look for a durable material, preferably with foam lining, in case of the heavy bag. Genuine leather is the most durable. However, it is quite expensive too. Other materials like artificial leather, vinyl, canvas, etc. are also available in the market. Go with either genuine or premium quality PU leather with non-tear reinforcement. It is durable, light on the pockets and reliable for great performance.
5- Filling Decides Performance
The filling is the most crucial attribute when it comes to heavy bags. After all your hands are going to hit this very filling. The right filling must offer great resistance without straining your wrists and arms. Too hard, the filling might crush your bones, too soft, and your hand will slip which may cause twists, sprains and even dislocation. The textile filling is the ideal choice for heavy bags. It is resistant as well as resilient. Moreover, it is neither too hard, nor too soft on the hands.
Things You Need to Get With a Punching Bag
There are a lot of things one might need along with punching bags, like the best punching bag drills, sizes, and stands for home usage or the material for unfilled bags. When you buy a punching bag, keep in mind the safety of your hands. After all, these are your most significant assets. Do get hand wraps along with a good pair of boxing training gloves or boxing bag gloves if you are a beginner. The hand wraps keep all the bones in your hands at the right angle. They will help form a strong fist while the gloves will offer the necessary cushioning against the bag. Make sure your boxing gloves have enough padding for maximum shock absorption and impact dissipation.
Always wear hand wraps and boxing gloves for punching bag workout. These will protect your hands from bruising, bleeding, cuts and other potential injuries. Buy boxing punching bags according to your skill level and training needs. Find the wide variety of all kinds of punching bags, best boxing gloves as well as hand wraps at Starpro.