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Combat sports like mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing have seen a resurgence in popularity, with new studios opening worldwide.
Yet, if you want to continue your boxing training at home, you’ll need key pieces of equipment — the main one being a punching bag.
Healthline rated the best punching bags based on cost, size, and portability.
Here are the top 13 punching bags for 2021.
The hanging heavy bag is by far the most popular punching bag used in boxing — and for good reason, as it allows you to practice a wide range of punches, kicks, knees, and other boxing movements.
These bags are usually 4–5 feet (122–152 cm) tall, cylindrical in shape, and anywhere from 40–100 pounds (18–45 kg) or more.
They’re usually designed to hang from a stable surface with straps or chains.
This heavy bag provides a great deal of value for the price.
The Ringside Powerhide heavy bag comes soft-filled with a layer of foam on the outside to protect your hands and feet, making it a great option for beginners.
The heavy-duty outer covering is made of canvas and helps the bag hold its shape while providing a solid striking surface.
|Weight||100 pounds (45 kg)|
|Height||42 inches (107 cm)|
At 6 feet (183 cm) high, the Ringside 100-Pound Muay Thai Heavy Bag is significantly longer than your typical heavy bag.
This makes it quite versatile, accommodating anything from low kicks to high punches.
The nylon straps with D-rings and chains make for a secure hanging solution.
|Weight||100 pounds (45 kg)|
|Height||72 inches (183 cm)|
While heavy bags are the gold standard in boxing training, not everyone has the space to hang one.
These compact punching bags take up less space but still provide a solid striking surface that’ll meet most of your training needs.
This Quiet Punch bag provides an excellent solution for home gyms that can”t accommodate full-size punching bags.
This bag is mounted in a doorway, and elastic bands are utilized to isolate the punching surface. This greatly reduces the noise made when it’s hit, making it a viable solution for apartments and other living situations in which you don’t want to disturb your neighbors.
Best bang for your buck
One major requirement of a heavy bag is a solid place to hang it. That said, not everyone wants to go through the trouble of permanently installing one.
Freestanding options are one alternative. They use a heavy base to hold the bag in place, which eliminates drilling from the equation and allows you to move them around as you please.
The Century Body Opponent Bag (B.O.B.) training dummy is a freestanding bag with human characteristics to make your training more realistic. As such, you can practice more specific punches and kicks that regular heavy bags don’t allow.
With an adjustable height of 60–78 inches (152–198 cm) and base that can be filled with water or sand, this bag is versatile for trainees of all sizes.
|Weight||up to 270 pounds (122 kg)|
|Height||60–78 inches (152–198 cm)|
Many gym-goers are keen to equip their home gyms without breaking their wallets. The following punching bags provide all of the essential features of a good heavy bag while suiting a tight budget.
With so many punching bags to choose from, deciding on which one to buy can be a bit overwhelming.
There are a few main factors that you should consider:
- Level of experience. More advanced trainees may require heavier bags, whereas beginners can use smaller, lighter bags.
- Body weight. A good rule of thumb is to choose a bag that’s half your body weight.
- Space requirements. Consider how much space you have for a punching bag.
- Type of training. Various combat sports require different sizes and shapes of bags.
- Bag height. Depending on your training level, you may need a bag of a specific height.
- For beginners: 3-foot (36-inch, 91-cm) bags
- For intermediate and advanced trainees: 4–5-foot (48–60-inch, 122–152-cm) bags
- For advanced trainees or specific striking movements: 5+-foot (60+-inch, 152+-cm) bags
Considering these factors will allow you to find the ideal punching bag for your goals.
With the rise in popularity of combat sports, punching bags have become a staple in home and commercial gyms alike.
Numerous types of punching bags are available in various shapes, sizes, and sport specificities.
When choosing a punching bag, consider factors like your body weight, level of experience, space on hand, and type of training.
Though a punching bag is a key piece of equipment for boxing or MMA training, you may also need boxing gloves, hand wraps, and jump ropes.