Best Punching Bags Reviews
You don’t have to be a boxer to include a punching bag as part of your home gym equipment roster. Spending time on the heavy bag is one of the best things you can do to get in shape. It will provide you with a great overall workout, with an emphasis on churning through the calories.
In this article, we’ll provide you with everything you need to know to make the best informed purchasing decision possible. We’ll also provide you with a some great sample workouts as well as reviews of the three best heavy bag stands on the current market.
Best Punching Bags at a Glance
Best Heavy Punch Bags Reviews
Types of Punching Bags
Free Standing Punching Bag
A free standing heavy punching bag stands on a base from the floor rather than being hung from the ceiling. Many freestanding bags have wheels that allow them to be easily moved around. It can be stored away after use making it ideal for people who have limited training space in their home. Freestanding bags are also a great option for kicking workouts.
Suspended Punching Bag
This is the most common and popular type of heavy bag. It is suspended from the ceiling with a chain. This is another good option for small spaces, so long as you are able to make holes in the ceiling, as it doesn’t take up much floor space.
Angled Heavy Bag
The angled heavy bag is very similar to the heavy bag except that it has an angled surface. This is beneficial when you want to practice your uppercuts, but is also suitable for all other types of training.
A kickboxing punching bag is longer than those that are designed for boxing training. They are typically more than sixty inches in length.
Uppercut Punching Bag
An uppercut punching bag is a pared down version of the heavy bag that is specifically designed for practicing your uppercuts.
The uppercut punching bag is attached to the wall. This is a specialist piece of boxing training equipment that most people won’t need in their home gym.
The speed bag is a much lighter and smaller bag that is filled with air. It allows for a very quick workout and is great for practicing your hand eye coordination. This is a ceiling mounted bag, but some are also mounted to the wall.
Mexican Double End Bag
The Mexican double end is a basketball shaped bag, usually made of leather that has two tight coils above and below that connects it to the ceiling and floor. It is similar to the speed bag in that it reverberates back to you quite quickly. However, unlike the speed bag, it comes back like a real opponent. This makes it great for dodging and swerving.
Large Maize Bag
The maize bag has a unique oblong design that is bigger at the base. It hangs at about the level of the head and it used for training head movement as well as uppercuts and hooks. It’s not very effective for body training, however, so you probably wouldn’t want this as your main bag.
Teardrop Punching Bag
The teardrop bag is a smaller bag that is best for training for agility, coordination, timing and speed. Because it swings more than many other bags, it is also good for practicing your head movements.
Best Brand - Everlast Punching Bag
Most people, even those who are not boxing fans, are familiar with the Everlast brand. Needless to say it is the most iconic brand in the industry.It is also the biggest player in the martial arts training gear market. Everlast make some great bags and we’ve got the best of them reviewed right here.
Consider buying these Bag Stands
A good punching bag matches well with a reliable and sturdy Bag Stand. Here is a review of some of the bag stands that will help you train hard with your heavy bag.
What to look for in a Punching Bag?
There are five key buying considerations when you are after a heavy punching bag. Let’s take them one at a time . . .
- Size/Weight: There is an easy way to determine
the ideal weight of a heavy punching bag for you –
it should be half of your bodyweight. So, if you weigh in at two hundred pounds, you will want a bag that weighs a hundred pounds. You want a bag that provides you with as thick a diameter as possible. If you’re a Muay Thai fighter, however, you will probably want a longer thinner bag. The standard bag height is between four and five feet.
- Bag Type: The type of bag that you purchase is determined by how much room you have available and by the type of training that you do. The heavy bag is the best choice for training the power of your punches and kicks. The speed bag is best for training for eye and hand coordination.
- Construction Material: You want the outer material of your heavy punching bag to be extremely durable. The best materials are leather, heavy duty vinyl or synthetic leather. Inside the bag should be materials that will not sink to the bottom – if they do the top part of the bag will be left without any padding at all, which will be pretty hard on your hands. The bag should be filled with some type of fiber material. You don’t want to buy a bag which is filled with sand as it will probably sink to the bottom of the bag.
Bags that are made from foam padding are the best at absorbing the impact of your punches and kicks. Foam padded bags are the easiest on your hands.
You can buy heavy bags that are made from canvas and these are usually the cheapest on the market. However, we advise you not to purchase a canvas heavy bag as it feels uncomfortable on the hands and feet when you strike it. Synthetic leather is the most popular option because it is cheaper than leather and feels good against the skin.
- Brand: With a lot of products out there, brand is not that important. You can often find little known brands that are actually of better quality than the big players. That is usually not the case with heavy boxing bags. The best and most reputable heavy boxing bags are Century, Everlast and Ringside. However, don’t go by brand alone. There is plenty of range within these brands from mediocre to outstanding.
- Hanging or Freestanding: You need to decide between buying a freestanding or a ceiling mounted hanging heavy bag. The freestanding bag has the obvious advantage that it is portable. Also, if you are in rented accommodation it will allow you to have a heavy punching bag in your workout area without having to put holes in the ceiling. The downside of a freestanding bag is that it is nowhere near as stable as a ceiling hung bag. So, if you have the room for it and the freedom to hang a chain from the ceiling, then you are better off going with the standard chain hung bag.
What to look for in a Punching Bag Stand?
- Maximum Weight: You want to go with a boxing stand with the heaviest weight that you can afford. Obviously the higher the weight, the better the construction material and the stability of the unit. Most bags will weigh a hundred pounds or less so you want a weight capacity that is at least 250 pounds.
- Height: Most bag stands have a height of between 85 and 90 inches. With most heavy bags having a length of between 45 and 60 inches, this should be a good height. However, if you are buying a Muay Thai bag that is longer than a standard heavy boxing bag, you will want to buy a taller bag stand. You’ll know if the bag is the right height when the top of the hung bag is at the level of your head. The best boxing stands are adjustable so that you can customize the height of the bag. Just make sure that the mechanism is very sound so that it will not drop when you are half way through your workout.
- Stability: You want the bag stand to be as stable as possible. To ensure that the unit is as stable as possible, you should look for extended base stabilizers. Some also have weights at the base to counterbalance.
- Space: A boxing stand takes up a large amount of space so you need to check the footprint to see if it will fit into your available space. Be sure to add a few feet around that footprint to give yourself plenty of room to move.
- Bag Distance: It is important to consider how far from the vertical upright the bag actually hangs. You don’t want it to be too close or you will end up either kicking or hitting it, which could cause a rather nasty accident. You want a distance of at least 15 inches between the bag and the upright pole.
- Extras: The bag stand will be designed to hold a heavy bag, but if it comes with extra provision for taking a speed bag or a Mexican double end bag, all the better.
How to use a Punching Bag?
When you are punching straight on to a heavy bag it is vital that you hit flush with your knuckles. You should land the shot palm down on the bag. Do not connect with the top of your knuckles or with your fist angled or you will likely sprain your
When you are practicing your hook shoots, you should come in closer to the bag. In fact, you can come right in and rest your head on the bag. Hooks that are taken from too far out will lose power and probably sprain the wrist. The hook should be landed with the knuckles flat on the bag.
When you are practicing body shots, come down low on the bag, with your knees bent and punch into the bag with your palms up. Again the knuckles should connect with the bag in a flush position.
When you practice slipping punches on the bag, move your head to the opposite side of the bag as you quickly slip punches into the solar plexus region of the bag. You should also learn how to make use of the movement of the bag. When the bag is swinging back toward you you need to learn how to both defend and attack it. As the bag comes back, you should swivel around to the other side of it and attack from that side, constantly transitioning from side to side as you progress through the workout.
Benefits of Punching Bag Workout and Training
- Full Body Training: When you train on a punching bag, you are getting an effective full body workout.
It will directly work the muscles of your shoulders, arms and waist, with the constant crouching for hooks also working the legs. Of course you get more leg involvement when you add kicks to the workout.
- Cardio Workout: Working out on a punching bag
is a whole lot more interesting than walking on a treadmill or pedalling on a stationary bike. It is also a far more effective calorie burner than either of those exercises. Making the heavy bag part of your cardio workout circuit is a great way to burn off that excess bodyfat, too.
- Core Strength Development: Working on the heavy bag is a great way to develop the strength of your core. Your core is the basis of your punching power and the heavy bag will help to develop the intercostals, obliques and rectus abdominus. The weight transfer from one punch to the next is also building your core strength.
Popular Punching Bag Workouts
Here’s a popular 8 exercise punching bag circuit workout that was first published in Men’s Fitness magazine. Complete the circuit before taking a short 30 second rest. Go through 5 rounds of the circuit to complete your workout.
The best punching bag on the current market is the Everlast MMA 70 Pound Heavy Punching Bag, which provides you with hand wraps and gloves, great shock absorbency and an adjustable chain.
Our runner up is the RDX Punching Bag Kit, with its good shock absorbency, zip opening and lots of extras. Rounding out our top three is the Outslayer Muay Thai Heavy Duty Bag, which delivers a heavy 130 pound heavy bag, 72 inch length and adjustable straps for a customized fit.