Punch bags have been around for decades and are one of the most iconic pieces of fitness equipment available. However, with them being considered such primitive items, many won’t realise just how much variety you actually have available when looking to buy a punch bag.
That’s why we're here to give you a run down of the amount of choice you have. We'll show you the options available, explain the differences between them, and tell you exactly who each type is most suitable for.
That should give you all the information you need to select the perfect punch bag and take your game to the next level.
Types of punch bags:
Leather punch bags are the most common option available, as they are durable and can be filled to a range of different weights. They are ideal for all users, especially those in training for a big fight or competition.
Canvas punch bags operate in the same way as the leather variety however they feature greatly reduced durability. On this plus side, this means they are significantly cheaper, making them ideal for those on a tighter budget.
A PU punch bag is made from Polyurethane and is somewhat of a mid-point between the two bags we have already looked at. It features greater durability and weight allowance than a canvas bag, while being notedly cheaper than a leather option. This makes it a great mid-range option, ideal for those switching between the other grades of bag.
A tethered punch bag is one with built in straps for suspending it from a bracket or the ceiling. These are generally much sturdier than free standing options, making it a great choice for any stronger or more experienced users.
Other things to consider
The weight of a punch bag will determine both the resistance it provides, as well as how strong the bracket it will be suspended from is. This means it is important to consider, based on both your strength and where it will be secured.
Punching bag fill material
Sand can be used to fill a punch bag, however this can make it incredibly hard and heavy, so is only suitable for extremely powerful punchers. However, many punch bags will feature a small amount of sand in their base, in order to make them more stable.
This is perhaps the most common filling for a punch bag. It is cheap, provides a good weight, and has enough give that it won’t hurt your hands.
While you may occasionally find a punch bag completely filled with water, this will usually only be found on extremely cheap options, due to the obvious issues that could arise in the case of a breakage. In the case of water and air, they are usually used in conjunction with another filling.
Often, punch bags that allow their weight to be adjusted can have a sealed tube or canister filled with water or air inserted into the middle. This will allow them to quickly and easily have their weight altered, as and when is needed.
Punch bags of different sizes will each have a different level of suitability for a user, based on factors including strength, speed, style and available space. Weigh up how all of these relate to you and select a bag that best meets your personal combination of needs.
Round heavy bags
Round heavy bags, often referred to as speed bags, are the smallest type available. You should consider this style if you prioritise speed and accuracy.
Banana bags are the stereotypical punch bags you see in most gyms. The are a great choice for a full workout, whether using punches or kicks of any strength or style.
Double end heavy bags
Double end heavy bags will move about in a way that somewhat resembles the bobbing and weaving you will experience from an opponent in the ring. This makes them a great choice for those entering a competition, or wanting to improve their accuracy, rhythm, and timing.
Angle heavy bags
Angle heavy bags are often also referred to as uppercut bags. This is because their lip and thicker top make them ideal to practise uppercuts, as well as your traditional kicks and punches.
Level of ability
The level of ability of a user can affect both the size and weight that you need in a bag. Make sure you are honest with yourself about your own ability, to ensure you select the bag that best meets your needs and don’t waste money on an option more advanced than you require.
Punch bags can get quite expensive, so make a realistic list of what you need from one. This way, you will be able to get a much clearer picture of how much you realistically need to spend on a punch bag.