Best Punching Bags

Punching bag buyers guide

A punching bag is not just a good workout tool for getting fit, it can also be a great way to relieve stress. You can burn calories, lose weight and strengthen your muscles whilst releasing negative energy and letting off steam to get your endorphins flowing. Boxing has proven to be a great saviour for many fitness enthusiasts from all different backgrounds.

As good as punching a bag can feel and how rewarding it can be in the long run, you might not want to splash the cash on expensive boxing lessons or gym memberships. Not to worry, there are plenty of punch bags you can buy to use in your home gym.

We have hand-picked some of the best punching bags to help you find one that is suitable for your own circumstances and covered some of the key features to look out for when buying a punch bag.

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What are the best punching bags?

Here we will take a look at our best punching bags from the hundreds of punching bag reviews that we have researched and analysed in great detail.

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What are punching bags?

A punching bag is a sturdy bag designed to be repeatedly punched. This makes them a great tool for cardiovascular activity, strength training and stress relief. A punching bag is usually cylindrical, and filled with various materials of corresponding hardness. They come in a range of different styles which we will discuss later in this article.

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What are the benefits of punching bags?

A punching bag workout should focus on building as many muscles as possible, which makes it a great exercise for increasing strength and enhancing power. Frequently punching a bag incorporates the muscles in the arms, shoulders, chest, back, legs, and core, making it an effective full-body workout.

You build your upper body strength, plus, as you constantly punch the bag, you develop speed and an ability to absorb the punches without damaging your hands.

Most bag sessions last for a minimum of two minutes. Professionals typically sustain their high intensity punching and moving for three minutes. Occasionally, you may choose to box the heavy bag for a longer rounds to improve your fitness level.

Done two to three times a week, a punching bag workout will burn fat and get you in fighting shape. Fat burning boxing is an extremely effective cardio workout, that goes without question.

Whether you need the strength for a competition, to perform your daily tasks, or just for the sake of it, punching bags are worth it. Punching the bag does not only improve strength, but it also enhances your heart condition.

Here are some of the key benefits to training with a punching bag.

  • Burning calories
  • Losing weight
  • Increasing strength
  • Improving stamina
  • Enhancing power
  • Building muscle mass
  • Better reflexes
  • Boosting mental health
  • Relieving stress
  • Reduce anxiety & stress
  • Increase self-defence skills
  • Improve self-esteem & confidence
  • Enjoyable workout
  • Saving gym membership costs
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What are the different types of punching bags?

Punching bags come in all different shapes and sizes. Before you go out and purchase one, take a look at the different types of punch bags available to see which is the best punching bag for your needs. Different shaped bags are used for different types of training.

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Hanging Heavy Bag

The hanging heavy bag is probably the first type to pop into your head when you think of a punching bag. It is the type that hangs down from the ceiling and is designed for hard training due to the increased weight of the bag. The heavy bag comes in a standard size and shape, around 4-5 feet long and not too narrow or too wide.

A hanging boxing bag is typically heavier than a free-standing bag. This means that it has more resistance, and you’ll be able to punch harder. Most heavy bags are hung around waist height and will have varying degrees of swing which depends on the material used to fill the bag and its weight.

Additionally, no matter how hard you punch, your bag won’t tip over. If you live in a small home, a heavier bag won’t swing around as much and so shouldn’t crash into anything.

The heavy bag provides a great way to work on your technique, power, and conditioning. It is probably the best punch bag when it comes to all round performance.

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Angle Punch Bags

Angle punching bags allow you to work on a variety of different punches: uppercuts, hooks, jabs, power punches, angled shots, and more. The unique shape of the bag is top-heavy and thins out towards the bottom, hence its commonly called the “banana punch bag”.

You can choose between single angle or double angled punch bags. The double angled bags are better for performing punching work (such as hooks and uppercut work) whereas the single angled bags can be used for both punching and kicks.

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Teardrop Punch Bags

As the name suggests, this punch bag literally looks like a huge tear drop. Unlike the traditional heavy bag which focuses on developing power, the teardrop punching bag is primarily used to develop speed, timing, and accuracy.

The weight of the teardrop punch bag should be just about enough to provide resistance training for improving your strength whilst also being light enough to swing so that you can move sufficiently around to develop your reflex, rhythm, and footwork.

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Wrecking Ball Punch Bags

The wrecking ball punch bag is usually located quite high up and is a very versatile punching bag. Whilst it’s not suitable for kicking, it is great for punching from all angles and bobbing and weaving. This makes it good for combining cardio and strength conditioning.

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Free Standing Punch Bag

This is another type of heavy punch bag that is built upright on top of a stand rather than hanging down from the ceiling. These types of bags are commonly found in homes and are ideal for people who don’t have anywhere to hang a punch bag in their home.

The advantages of freestanding punch bags are that they can be moved around when not in use and do not require any holes to be drilled or special fittings. The base of a freestanding bag is usually filled with water or sand to ensure that it does not move when you strike it.

One of the popular free-standing bags is the B.O.B. (Body Opponent Bag). This bag is in the shape of a person which allows you to work on targeting different areas of the body when striking the bag. BOB bags also allow you to raise and lower the bag depending on your height. This can allow you to practice against short, medium, or taller opponents.

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Upper Cut Punch Bag

Uppercut bags are on the smaller side and are designed specifically for training to improve technique, speed and combinations of close distance uppercut work.

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Speed Balls

A speed ball is primarily designed to train your timing, rhythm and arm endurance. They bounce back quickly when punched so you have to react quickly which improves your foot work. The more air that is in the bag, the quicker it will respond.

A speed ball can also be used to increase hand-eye coordination and body conditioning. The smaller the speed bag is, the hardy it will be to hit. These inflated balls are attached to a board on the wall but can also be freestanding.

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Maize Punch Bags

Maize punch bags are designed for defence practice, they are ideal for perfecting ‘Bob and Weave’ defence techniques. The hanging chain design makes them space saving for home or smaller gyms. Maize punch bags are filled with granules and are great for increasing your endurance, speed, reflexes and defence.

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How to choose the best punching bag for you

Now that we have covered the different types of punching bags available for your home gym, we need to consider some of the key features to look out for.

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The material that the punch bag is made from is one of the most important things to check. You want a material that is strong, sturdy and will last the test of time.

Real leather punch bags are a popular choice as they offer a natural feel for punches or kicks, and can last for many years as leather is very durable. They do come at a premium cost but can certainly save you from having to fork out for a new bag in the future. Artificial leather punch bags are also an option if you want the feel of leather but not the quality or price tag that goes with it.

Another common material that punch bags are made from is PU (Polyurethane) or canvas. These type of punch bags are durable enough for intense workouts and can be free standing or hanging bags. Whilst they are more affordable than leather punch bags and serve the same purpose, you will probably need to spend more for the better-quality options.

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You can have the best punch bag in the world, but it doesn’t matter if you haven’t got anywhere to put it. Measure up and make sure that any bag you are considering will comfortably fit within your home gym space. Also consider if it will be suitable for your height and if it can be adjusted.

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Individual Goals

Everyone will have their own reasons for buying a punch bag. Some may be doing it for general fitness, others may need it to train for a professional sport such as boxing or Muay Thai. Consider what your individual needs are and if the punching bags you are looking at will meet them.

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At the end of the day, your budget is going to play a big part in your decision. You can narrow down your search according to your price range and take it from there. Thankfully, there are plenty of punching bags that cater to a wide range of budgets. You don’t need to break the bank but you wouldn’t want to regret your choice just to save some pocket change.

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If you have made it this far, you should have a good idea of the best punching bags available and what to look for if you are in the market for one.

No matter what punch bag you choose, all of these options can deliver an intense cardio and strength workout that has a multitude of benefits for everyone.

Happy training! 

Rich is an avid bodybuilder who has dedicated over 20 years of his life to the sport. He has a strong passion for health and fitness, living a clean lifestyle with a commitment to helping others educate themselves and fulfil their true potential.

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