Starting your fitness or combat routine with a bag is definitely 100% the right thing to do because it is easily accessible. However, choosing the right punching bag for your needs can also be a hassle.
Because, the punching bag of a great variety and different uses has brought difficulties to the consumer to choose the punching bag that suits oneself. For example, Muay Thai, kickboxing, boxing, aerobics, kickboxing, etc. all have their own specific packages. If you want to train well or practice exercises effectively for a specific purpose, then you need definitive instruction.
If you are struggling how to choose a punching bag that meets your needs within an affordable price range. In this article, I’ve covered all the basics you need to know so you’ll be able to pick a quality bag like others. Not only this, but you can easily decide on the suitable bag size and nature according to your requirements.
Main Features for Choosing the Right Punching Bag
Weight of A Punching Bag
The weight of the bag is directly related to impact resistance. More weight on the bag means more resistance to blows. As a beginner, a bag that is too heavy may not be the best choice as your joints and bones will suffer. On the other hand, lighter weights also have the downside of being bouncy, as it’s bad for your technique.
So, what should be the weight of a punching bag?
Boxing trainers prefer to solve this problem the traditional way, which is to carry a bag based on your weight. Meaning, half your body weight should be the weight of the bag. That is, if your weight is 90kg, your bag should be 45kg. Although the choice of bag may also vary depending on the training purpose.
Punching bag weights in boxing vary according to the needs and workouts for various types of punches. Like a heavier bag takes more energy and provides a lot of resistance but develops heavier boxing skills, while a lighter bag does the opposite but helps improve reflexes.
Therefore, you must choose a bag with balanced weight according to your boxing skill level, otherwise the uneven weight will not benefit you, and may even seriously hurt you.
The Filling Material of a Bag
Each fill material in a punching bag has different properties and conveys a different feel. There are several types of padding (water, cloth pieces, gel beads, sawdust, cotton, etc.) that are preferred and used by boxers or fitness enthusiasts for certain purposes and needs.
You can find both empty and filled bags in the market, but filled bags from reputable brands are worth more than empty bags. Mostly I choose prefilled bags made of synthetic material as it doesn’t collect moisture etc. And empty bags are still a hassle when it comes to arranging good filling materials for them.
However, if you want to have a customized punching bag according to your needs. My suggestion then is to always fill the bottom of the bag with some harder material like rags or sawdust (great for kicking) and the upper part with a softer material like foam or cotton pieces (good for punching practice). By doing this, you will be able to maintain the variation in fill density.
Padding is one of the most important aspects we look at when choosing a punching bag due to the feel factor. In the past, most boxers used to use sand as a filling material, but after use, the sand settled on the bottom of the bag which could cause imbalance and cause serious injury.
Second, bags filled with water give you a real physical feel, but in most cases, finding a durable water punching bag is also very difficult. From my research, the ideal padding material is cloth, which is basically compressible and offers a similar hardness to sand, but is friendlier to fighters’ fists.
Still, if you want a quick and compact solution that just assembles and starts working out straight away, then I would definitely recommend a good freestanding punching bag. Standing punching bags are gaining popularity right now because of their design and ease of use. You can even use it in a small corner of your home after simple assembly and start exercising from day one.
Manufacturing Materials of The Bag
The traditional punching bag material is always made of real natural leather which is durable and gives a natural feel. Today, however, many synthetic materials are available that provide the same quality at an affordable price, fulfilling most of the needs of consumers.
Most bag materials such as synthetic (PU) leather, fabric (canvas) and plastic (PVC) are good enough to give you a similar experience to real leather. However, you should familiarize yourself with the requirements or properties of each material before adding them to your arsenal.
Professional boxing bags made of genuine leather are more expensive, but offer higher quality and durability. However, they require a little more pampering, such as drying off sweat after training, nourishing them with the right skin cream, and storing them at the right temperature for quality performance.
Punching bags made of canvas or fabric are much simpler and less expensive. This type of bag is highly resistant and also has the advantage of being repairable, but is often uncomfortable without gloves.
Training bags made of PU or synthetic leather are a great option for beginners or fitness enthusiasts. You’ll love the feel of real leather and it requires less care than other types, but the truth is that it will eventually break down over time.
Also, some of the best punching bags are made of high-quality vinyl that can hold up to anything and won’t crack unless we stick a knife into it. However, the durability or longevity of the bags also varies from brand to brand and it has to do with the quality of the materials they use.
Finally, there are punching bags that are made of plastic and are the cheapest, but not as durable as the ones I mentioned above. These types of punching bags are usually designed for small kids, teens, and, girls to use in their fitness routine.
So, when picking out a punching bag, make sure the materials of construction are high quality, environmentally friendly, and will give you the expected lifespan.
The Use of a Punching Bag
Before picking any bag, you must keep in mind what purpose you are going to use it for. Now, there are specific types of bags that are used in every combat sport training. Picking up the wrong bag will not only sabotage your desired outcome. But, it also bring other complications such as possible injury, wasted time and money etc.
If you are a beginner boxer then you should to know about the different types of punching bags. You can also simply start with a normal punching bag based on the criteria I mentioned earlier. In most cases, I would prefer a good freestanding punching bag, which works well for both boxing and fitness training.
Later, as you become familiar with boxing terminology, punches, and moves, you’ll also learn which tools are best for practicing specific moves. So before buying a bag, make sure you know what you will be using it for and under what conditions.
Boxing Bag Size
Punching bags are usually as short as 2.5 feet and as tall as 6 feet. However, usually the 5-foot style is the most common, and the 3-foot style is more popular with women. Men tend to opt for the longer bags, 1.5 to 1.8 meters, which allow for a wider range of punching and kicking.
The size of the punching bag in your workout is an essential element. The bag can be used as a practice target to help you develop and perfect your punching or kicking technique. So, don’t just be obsessed with beautifully designed bags, but choose a bag that suits your height.
Since the punching bag is the go-to tool for boxing and other combat training. You must check its quality because it is also an undeniable consideration before making any choice. Whether you want to choose a bag for your boxing or combat sports practice or fitness program, always keep the above factors in mind.
By checking factors such as the weight, size, manufacturer, and fill material of your punching bag along with your workout requirements, you can be satisfied later. You’ll be happier than ordering and regretting it or seeing a bag in a store flash.
I wish you a happy and healthy life, thank you