When life gets you down, sometimes you just need to find an outlet to get rid of all of that pent up energy and frustration. For some people, that may mean channeling their energy into writing or playing an instrument. For others, it might mean punching and kicking the crap out of a bag.
Punching bags are an amazing resource to help get rid of any stress, anxiety or aggression where you can put aside everything in your life for a while and just focus on the matter at hand — hitting an inanimate object.
You might be pleasantly surprised at how cathartic punching a bag is, not to mention how great of a workout can be. When boxing and kickboxing, your body has to use every major muscle group — from your feet to your abs, your arms, brain, even your breath — every part of your body has to work in sync.
Basically, punching bags are a fun, full-body workout that burns calories and builds muscle while improving your balance and coordination.
Like most things in this world, there isn’t one single punching bag that’s the end-all-be-all of bags. If you’re looking to buy a punching bag of your own, choosing the right bag for you all depends on the type of training you do, style, size and material of the bag.
For a breakdown of the different types of bags and what fighting styles use each bag, head to the bottom of the article. To see a list of our top five punching bags, check it out below.
|Size:||14" x 42"|
Made from high-quality leather, this standard-sized, Ringside heavy-duty bag is ideal for fighters looking to build muscle and increase mobility.
The Ringside leather heavy bag is perfect for all of your boxing, MMA, Muay Thai and karate needs. Weighing in at 100 lbs. and wrapped in a soft 2” foam liner, this standard sized heavy-duty bag will help you build muscle and endurance while reducing strain on your wrists, elbows and shoulders with its comfortable hitting surface.
|Size:||19.6" x 69"|
|Material:||2 mm PU leather, high density EPE foam|
Whether you want to de-stress or build strength, this Dripex free standing punching bag is the perfect at home punching bag that can be used by the whole family.
With 12 strong suction cups securing the bag to even the smoothest of floors, this durable bag was made from a multi-layer material construction to help minimize the chance of bruising or injury and features dual PVC shock absorbers to reduce vibration and noise.
|Size:||27.43 x 13.97 x 10.16 cm|
Ready to take your boxing skills to the next level? This Everlast Speed bag was built from high-quality leather and balanced to give users accurate rebounding.
Speed bags are a great way to workout your arm, shoulder and back muscles while improving your timing, hand-eye coordination and endurance skills. This Everlast speed bag uses genuine leather, reinforced seams and laces to give users a high-quality, durable speed bag that’s been shaped and designed for optimal rebounding.
|Size:||Mannequin: 30" x 22" x 12", Base: 24", Diameter x 19.5"|
|Material:||High-strength plastisol, urethane foam|
Unless you want to give the people you live with a scare, make sure to warn your friends and family of Bob’s arrival before bringing home this Century Body Opponent Bag.
With seven different adjustable heights, this high strength body bag uses a vinyl “skin” to help give you a more realistic training session. This life-like body bag is the perfect partner for practicing sparring techniques and target work — it's perfect for MMA, boxing and other fitness training sessions.
|Size:||27 x 16.5 x 7.5 cm|
Perfect for home, gym or garage workouts, this Toco Freido double-end punching ball will help you learn all of the fundamentals of fighting while building your hand-eye coordination.
This Toco Freido double end punching ball is made from durable PU leather, reinforced seams, and a high elasticity rope. Looking to improve your reaction time, endurance, hand eye coordination and reflexes? You can sharpen your MMA and boxing skills with this inexpensive double-end bag.
When it comes to punching bags, there are countless sizes and designs created for different types of training. It’s important to understand the different styles of bags and what they're made of; that way you can find the best punching bag specific to your needs.
The type of punching bag you buy should fit in with your unique athletic goals, don’t just run out and buy the first bag you see.
When you hear people talk about punching bags, there's a good chance that the first image that comes to mind is a heavy bag. You know, that big chunky bag that hangs down from the ceiling and makes a cameo in virtually every boxing movie?
This type of bag is designed to withstand a lot of impact, and whether it takes a beating from your arms or legs, heavy bags help improve your overall technique and strength.
Heavy bags are usually hung from the ceiling with a chain, swivel or rope and can weigh anywhere from 30 to 200 lbs. Your size will help you determine how heavy of a bag you should get. Simply divide your weight by two and voila, that’s how heavy your bag should be to give you the best resistance training.
Also, before you buy a heavy bag, check to make sure that your ceiling can support the weight.
Best for: boxing, MMA, Muay Thai, karate
Free standing bags are what the name implies. They don’t have a fixed mounting system that supports them; just a sturdy base placed on the floor that's filled with water or sand to keep it stable. An added benefit of these bags is that they aren’t stuck in just one spot. Instead, you can move them wherever you need them to go.
These bags usually have some form of spring loaded feature inside them that help them return back to a fighter after each hit which is helpful in developing speed and movement training. Free standing bags can be a useful tool for building muscle, practicing low kicks and are an ideal choice for at home workouts if your ceiling can’t support a heavy bag.
Best for: MMA, Muay Thai
Speed bags are those small, teardrop shaped bags filled with air that hang above an athletes head that help to improve a fighters timing, endurance, shoulder strength and hand eye coordination.
If you’re new to speed training, you can start with larger speed bags that are easier to hit, and slowly work your way down to small bags.
Best for: Traditional boxing
Double-end bags are similar to speed bags, just with an added layer of difficulty. This type of bag is attached to both the ceiling and the floor which allows it a greater range of motion.
If you want to improve your reflexes, hand eye coordination, speed or your rhythm, double end bags are a great way to get a feel for what it would be like to face a moving target and prep you for a real breathing opponent.
Best for: Boxing
Body bags are designed to look like a human outfitted with a face, arms and a torso to help you familiarize yourself with hitting the different parts of the body.
This style of bag is especially useful for MMA fighters or people preparing to eventually switch out the bag for the real thing.
Best for: MMA
Finding the best punching bag for you isn’t always an easy task. It may take some time and research before you settle on a style that suits your specific needs.
Whether you’re looking for a new outlet or are training for a combat sport, investing in a punching bag can be a fantastic way to improve both your physical and mental skills.
Do you own a punching bag? Did your favourite make our list? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!