Best Punching Bag – Buying Guide & Reviews

A punching bag (also known as a heavy bag) is commonly used by Boxers, MMA and Muay Thai fighters to improve their striking technique and power. They are also excellent tool for those who want to get in shape and improve their conditioning.

Depending on your needs, you can purchase a heavy bag for the gym or home use. There are many heavy bags available to buy, so selecting the right one can be quite a daunting process. Rest assured, this detailed guide will offer you all the information you need to make the right purchase.

Why Do You Need The Best Punching Bag?

Some newbies may be tempted to purchase a cheap heavy bag to get started. Don't make this mistake!

Whether you are a beginner or a professional, you will greatly benefit from a top quality punching bag. Poor quality construction and / or the wrong filling / stuffing inside punching bags can result in serious injury. For example, as a beginner, it's best to avoid sand filled bags - they are too firm and offer too much resistance when getting started.

Choosing The Best Punching Bag Material

Heavy bags are made using a variety of different materials, with the most popular being leather, vinyl and canvas:

Leather Bags

Most experts prefer leather bags - they offer a natural feel and excellent striking experience, compared to other materials. They are also highly durable and tend to last longer than bags made from other materials. However, this comes at a cost - leather bags tend to be more expensive than other types.

In summary - leather bags are the premium option.

Vinyl Bags

Vinyl heavy bags offer a similar feel to leather bags. While the quality isn’t as good as leather bags, vinyl bags provide a nice mix of quality and affordability.

In summary - vinyl bags represent a good mid-tier option.

Canvas Bags

Canvas heavy bags are typically much cheaper than leather or vinyl bags. However, they tend to be lower quality and more prone to wear and tear than other types of punching bags. Make sure to wear boxing gloves when striking this bag, as the canvas material will tear your knuckles.

In summary - canvas bags are an acceptable option if you're on a budget.

Filled Vs. Unfilled Bags

You can also choose between filled or unfilled punching bags. Filled bags are convenient and come ready to go, while unfilled bags require you to insert an appropriate filling / stuffing inside before use.

While most brands offer heavy bags with fillers, you can also find premium quality, unfilled versions as well. Unfilled bags are a good option for those who want to choose the stuffing themselves - this allows you to tailor the punching bag to the perfect firmness for your needs. Unfilled bags are obviously a lot lighter too, which will reduce your shipping costs.

If you opt for an unfilled bag, take time to ensure you choose the correct filler material and stuff the bag carefully. Not doing so can create air pockets inside the bag.

Firmness Of The Bag

The firmness of the heavy bag you buy primarily depends on your goals. If you are a beginner or using the punching bag primarily for cardio and conditioning, opt for a softer bag.

On the other hand, harder heavy bags are better for more experienced strikers and the greater resistance will help develop tougher arms and legs.

Choosing The Right Weight

The weight of the bag depends on your size and how experienced you are. If you are smaller and / or a beginner, you will be better suited to a lighter bag.

For more experienced boxers and those who want to condition their muscles to striking, a heavier bag will be a better choice.

While there aren't any particular rules about how much the bag should weigh, we recommend it should be at least half your weight.

Why Is Choosing The Right Weight Important?

The weight of your punching bag is very important, for 2 reasons:

1. Swing And Resistance

The weight determines how much it will swing / move when hit. A heavier bag will offer more resistance and swing less. This can help develop punching power and increase the strength of your arms.

If the bag is lighter, it will swing much more - you'll have to move around the bag if you want to hit it straight on. This will increase the intensity and speed of your workout. The movement of the bag will improve your punching accuracy, footwork and head movement.


2. Risk Of Injury

If you choose a punching bag that's too heavy for you, this can lead to painful joints and injuries to your knuckles and wrists.

Here are some specific guidelines on heavy bag weight to provide optimal resistance and avoid injuries:

  • For kids, a 40-pound to 50-pound bag is suitable
  • A 70-pound to 80-pound heavy bag is ideal for most people
  • You can opt for a 100-pound bag if you weigh more than 170 pounds

Types Of Punching Bags

We'll now look at the common types of punching bags, and the pros and cons of each:

1. Hanging Punching Bags

As the name indicates, you have to suspend this type of bag. It can be hung from the ceiling via a chain, or the wall using a mounting bracket. Make sure your setup is sturdy enough to support the weight of the bag.

Generally found in gyms and an excellent option for folks who plan on regularly using a heavy bag. This type of bag will swing noticeably less when you strike it, offering a more effective punching workout.

2. Free Standing Punching Bags

A free standing punching bag (pictured) has a heavier, weighted base and does not need to be hung from the ceiling or wall. Ideal if a hanging punching bag is not suitable for your home / living space. Typically features adjustable height settings.

Everlast Powercore Free Standing Heavy Bag

3. Muay Thai Heavy Bags

Typically longer and weigh more, compared to other models. These heavy bags are designed for kicking, so it provides more resistance than other heavy bags that are designed for punching.

Muay Thai practitioners also use this heavy bag to practice knee and elbow strikes.

Tips To Prevent Injuries

Here are a few key tips you should follow to prevent injuries when working out with a heavy bag.

Use Heavy Bag Gloves

Heavy bag gloves will provide much needed padding when striking the bag and protect your hands and wrists.

Wrap Your Hands

In addition to wearing boxing gloves, don't forget to wrap your hands - this provides additional support to your hands and writs, and helps prevent injury. Using your bare hands (without wraps) in gloves can be unhygienic, especially if you plan on using the same gloves regularly.

Invest in decent hand wraps, and ensure you cover each part of your hands and wrists.

Preparing Hands For Boxing

Use The Right Technique

Just like any other workout, using the right technique is essential when hitting a heavy bag and will help you avoid injuries. Ask a trainer for help and shadow box in front of a mirror if you are a beginner.

The Best Hanging Punching Bag

Here is our favourite hanging punching bag on the market.

Everlast 70-Pound MMA Heavy-Bag Kit

Everlast 70-Pound MMA Heavy-Bag Kit
  • Kit includes 70-Pound, heavy bag, heavy bag gloves, 108-Inch hand wraps
  • Heavy bag stuffed with a custom filling of natural and synthetic fibers blended with sifted sand
  • Heavy Bag gloves and wraps for protecting your hands against the abrasion of the bag
  • Adjustable height customization chain; 100 pounds bag is approximately 52" in height with a 14.5" diameter.
  • Bungee cord for adding greater resistance to the bag

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

When it comes to making heavy bags, Everlast is certainly a brand you can trust.

This handy kit includes a 70-pound bag, hand wraps, and boxing gloves. It provides everything you need for a heavy bag workout and offers excellent value for money. Some notable features:

  • All in one kit: includes a 70-pound heavy bag, hand wraps, and heavy bag gloves
  • High quality punching bag, stuffed with synthetic fibers and custom filling, along with sifted sand
  • Adjust its height using the customization chain
  • Includes a bungee cord for additional resistance
Everlast 70-Pound MMA Heavy-Bag Kit
Everlast - Sports
from $77.04

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

Best Muay Thai Heavy Bags

Here are our two top picks for those looking to buy a Muay Thai Heavy Bag:

Winner: Outslayer Muay Thai Heavy Punching Bag Red

Muay Thai Heavy Punching Bag Red (130 Pound)
  • Muay Thai Kick Boxing Punching Bag 6ft 130lbs Filled Muay Thai Bag
  • Included with this Muay Thai Bag is a 10 Year Warranty Certificate, which Protects Your Heavy Bag Against Any Damage with the Only Exclusion of damage Caused by Weather and Sharp Objects. If anything happens to your heavy bag within 10 years, just send us a picture and we will send you a brand new punching bag.
  • Muay thai bag height is 6ft (72 inches) tall and another 12" are the straps with D-rings. Weight apx 130lbs. 130lbs + heavy bag weight is ideal for a muay thai bag. The heavier the punching bag the more weight resistance it creates, preventing the heavy bag from excess swinging. Due to the high material durability, you can add more weight to this muay thai bag if desired, up to 300lbs in total.
  • Proudly Made in the USA out of Top Quality American vinyl with weight capacity of 300lbs. Filled Only with Fabric, so This Muay Thai Bag will stay consistent and not create hollow and hard spots. Designed with 4 layer maximum strength straps , so no additional chains required. Ships Filled and ready for use.
  • Outslayer heavy bags are known to be the highest quality punching bags on the market, used in many gyms and training facilities worldwide. Don't settle for cheap imported knock offs, invest in the best and enjoy high end, top quality heavy bag for many years to come.

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

The Muay Thai Heavy Punching Bag Red is a high quality and durable heavy bag, designed to withstand powerful kicks and punches. Weighs 130 pounds and is 72 inches tall - some other notable features of this bag include:

  • Ten-year warranty: if something happens to the bag within 10 years, simply take a picture of the damage and the brand will send you a brand new one right away
  • Made using the highest quality materials and manufactured in the USA
  • Stuffing includes high-quality fabric, which means you don’t have to worry about hard sports or hollow spaces
  • Offers strong resistance, which prevents excessive swinging
Muay Thai Heavy Punching Bag Red (130 Pound)
Outslayer - Sports
from $550.11

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

Runner Up: Combat Sports Muay Thai Heavy Bag

Combat Sports 100-pound Muay Thai Punching Heavy Bag
  • This long full length heavy bag is top quality and highly rated for professional and amateur boxers
  • Solid bag made of durable synthetic leather construction is easy to clean and will hold up to your most powerful assault in your home or commercial gym
  • Punching bag is filled to 100 pounds and measures 13-inch x 72-inch with heavy duty chain included
  • Perfect heavybag for boxing, MMA, Muay Thai and contact sport athletes alike to practice kicks, footwork and punches
  • Build strength, tone and condition your body with a muscle building aerobic workout, training and the right fitness equipment

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

Are you in search of a reasonably priced Muay Thai training heavy bag? Then, the Combat Sports Muay Thai Heavy Bag is a good choice. Here are some of its key features:

  • Constructed using synthetic leather material to enhance durability
  • Easy to clean fabric, suitable for commercial gyms and home use
  • Pre-filled bag and weighs about 100 pounds
  • Conditions build strength and tones the body. Suitable for anybody who wishes to benefit from an aerobic workout

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

Best Freestanding Punching Bag

Interested in buying a freestanding punching bag? Here is our top pick:

The Century Wavemaster XXL

Century Wavemaster XXL Training Bag (Black)
  • Extra-large martial arts training bag with high-quality striking surface
  • Durable vinyl cover and high-density foam fill is tough yet forgiving
  • Low-profile base and ultra-stable weight distribution
  • Fills with either sand or water; weighs roughly 270 pounds when filled
  • Stands 69 inches tall and measures a full 18 inches in diameter

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

The Century Wavemaster XXL is among the highest rated free standing bags on Amazon. We recommend it for home use. Some notable features of this bag include:

  • High-density filling, with a premium vinyl cover
  • Can be filled with either water or sand
  • Stands about 69 inches tall

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

Best Alternative To A Punching Bag

Perhaps you are interested in honing your striking technique with something different?

BOB XL Punching Dummy

Century BOB XL with Base Unit
  • Freestanding heavy bag with life-like upper torso
  • Creates more striking surface for head or body shot training
  • High-strength plastisol body filled with urethane foam
  • Polyethylene base holds up to 270 pounds of water or sand
  • Rolls easily for transport; multiple height settings

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details

The BOB Punching Dummy is an interesting option for those looking for an alternative to a traditional heavy bag. The XL model features the same muscular build as the original BOB but is larger, with an elongated torso and thighs.

  • Its base can hold around 270 pounds of sand and water, which is sturdy enough for even the toughest fighters out there
  • Offers a more realistic target than heavy bags
  • Rolls easily, simple to move around
  • Adjustable height to suit your needs
Century BOB XL with Base Unit
Century - Sports

Last update on 2019-09-21 PST - Details


We hope you liked our guide and use it to find the perfect punching bag for your needs!

If you have any comments or questions, we'd love to hear from you in the comments section below.

You might also like our guide on the best boxing gloves.

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