One of the easiest ways of retiring early from your career is by using imitations, especially for the sportspeople. When buying boxing gloves there are things that you must watch out for, one is whether they become sweaty too fast, or too hot and if they are easy to make a fist. You will, therefore, identify a good boxing glove from the materials used in stitching, the workmanship of the closure and the padding material.
Boasting of a rich fighting culture, Thailand is believed to produce good quality gloves, for example, the Venum Elite boxing gloves, they have dense foam, their stitching is up to standard and are a perfect fit for serious fighters.
Features to look out for when buying a boxing glove
Glove fit is a serious factor to consider, the type and size of your hand and wrist should match the glove, therefore if you pick wide gloves your hands will have a lot of space that will make your wrist vulnerable.
When throwing punches you need to be able to make a tight fist, which you cannot if you are wearing too big or too small gloves. Also, consider your fingers are they too long or short ensure that your glove curls with your fingers. Your thumb needs to be accommodated in your glove too, so ensure that it is provided for as you don’t want to be poking your opponent’s eyes or hurting your thumb.
In addition, your thumb needs to curve properly so you can make a comfortable fist, it should also not be too stiff as you may not be able to throw hard punches. A solid punch can only be achieved if your gloves are not stiff padded and when fighting you will need to open your hands to relax and close them to a fist to fight. Therefore consider getting a glove that has soft padding for hand control.
Hand injuries are very common in boxing matches and most of them are caused by the padding design. The purpose of the glove is to protect your hand, you; therefore, have to ensure that the padding is right at the knuckles because when blows start raining on you, the padding on the backside and on the palm will help ease their intensity.
However, if you are going for a match and want to throw hard punches go for heavy gloves but if you are just training lighter gloves would be effective. Also check on the spread of the padding, a fully padded glove will protect your knuckles, hands, and wrist. You will also be able to block punches effectively.
Most companies make their gloves with the latex foam, which works well and is durable; however, the way the foam is cut and layered inside the glove will determine their performance. Given that there are different types of foams, you need to be very careful because the bad ones tend to go flat and will thus hurt your hand.
Also, watch out for your gloves closure, they should be of good quality because your forearm, wrist, and hand will need support. For example, some gloves are manufactured with the Double Velcro that has two Velcro straps, which offer good support and comfort. The problem is you will need someone to help you put it on.
Punching bags come in different types and sizes and each of them serves a unique purpose. We, therefore, look at five types of punching bags, and these are the Maize bag, the uppercut bag, the speedball, then there is the Heavy-duty or jumbo, the free-standing punch bag and lastly the punching dummy.
A punching bag is considered good with regard to the material that has been used to make the top part and the filling inside. Most bags especially the columnar type are filled with pieces of cloths, grain or sand. Therefore, to make them heavy sawdust and sand could be used as filling but then you also have to distribute the weight and make them a little less compact, and that is where you now add pieces of fabric.
Durable and costly punch bags are made of leather, for one the material will give you a natural feel when you throw a punch and they will last long. There are also other artificial leather bags that are a bit cheaper and work like the original leather bag, the only problem is that you will have to keep replacing them because they are not resilient enough for the punches.
Original leather punch bag might be expensive but with time you will see the value for your money. Other good materials for the bags are Polyurethane or Canvas. The latter is just as durable as the leather bags but much more affordable and offers the same service even when a person is engaging in intense work out session.
Types and uses of different punching bags
The Uppercut bag
The bags come in varied designs but they all work the same, there is the Body Snatcher, the Uppercut Maize bag, the Ringside uppercut bag, the Ringside Body Snatcher bag, and the Windy Wall Mounted uppercut bag.
Most of these bags are hanged on the ceiling except for the Windy Wall Mounted bag. You will, therefore, have to shop for a spring that you will use to mount the bags and in most cases, the springs indicate the amount of weight they are able to support.
The main purpose of the uppercut bag is to train you to improve your combination punches, for example, you could combine the hooks with uppercut punches. Many boxers combine punches during a fight to enhance their winning chances.
If you want to perfect on your footwork and angles as you throw punches invest in the Ringside body snatcher punch bag. The bag while hanging from the ceiling enables you to move around quite easily, you can also improve your weaving skills with this bag.
The uppercut maize bag will give you good training for throwing hard punches, its shape gives you the opportunity to throw an uppercut from anywhere, and the bottom part concaves so you don’t have to worry about hurting your hands while practicing.
The Uppercut angled maize punch bag
The speedball bag is best used to assist you in hand-eye coordination, so when you punch it, the bag will twirl and bounce back. You will then be required to respond quickly, a thing that helps you improve your footwork.
The Free-Standing punch bag
Practicing your boxing moves at home has been simplified by the free-standing punch bag. I know you are wondering how? Well, for one the bag can be moved easily around the space you created. You will, therefore, be required to fill the base with water or sand for stability and the best thing is that it enables you to do an all-round exercise.
The punch bag is versatile and both beginners and professionals can benefit from it. Then there is the Heavy-duty Jumbo punch bag, from the name you can tell that it has increased bag weight. The bag is, therefore, ideal for hard training as it helps strengthen and tone your muscles; it also boosts your confidence because you know you can deliver powerful hits.
The punching dummy is also a good boxing training tool; many people disregard it because they don’t understand the value that it adds to their boxing skills. When training with the dummy, you are presented with a real opponent you will, therefore, be able to practice blocking techniques and defense moves by using your hands and arms on the dummy.
What’s more, is that the wood dummies are being phased out, the modern ones are easy to train with because they are made of soft material and easily absorb the impact of your blows.
There are different types of boxing headgear but what sets them apart is the comfort aspect. Therefore, before you buy your headgear make sure it is made of leather because its main purpose is to protect your face. Counterfeits or imitations of leather should not be considered as they are bound to do more harm than good.
The climate that you are training in should be put into consideration when acquiring a boxing headgear. An open-face headgear would be ideal for the hot and humid climate as it enables penetration of air, and remember to select a headgear that will cool you down when training. Most importantly is that an open-face headgear does not offer full face protection, and is to be used for training only.
A nice fitting headgear is a must for any good boxer, therefore, choose one that does not obstruct your view as it is to remain intact when worn. A slipping and moving headgear in the middle of training is also quite uncomfortable.
Types of headgear
Sparring headgears come in different designs, some of which are the open face, the boxing headgear with cheek protection and the full face headgear among others. All the varied types are useful in a unique way, for example, the boxing headgear with cheek protection, cover’s a good chunk of your face but exposes your nose. It will protect your cheek but affect your ability to see clearly.
The full face boxing headgear has a built-in metal bar to protect your nose, although they will slightly affect your view they do protect almost all of your face. Professional boxers are fond of this type of headgear.
The open-face headgear will offer you one great thing and that is a clear view, otherwise, if you attempt to climb in the boxing ring with it concussions, cuts and bruises will rid your face, not to talk about what a direct blow to the skull might do.
Features to look out for when buying boxing shoes
Did you know that boxing shoes are not your typical sneakers and that there is more to them than traction? Your ideal boxing shoes for starters should be light in weight to facilitate movement around the ring. However, some boxers like the heavy fitting shoe to protect their ankles and for support.
You will agree that your normal shoe cannot support pivoting in boxing, and you could easily twist your ankle. Therefore, you will need shoes that will give you a perfect grip and enable you to pivot. However, grip choice is totally upon you but make sure that you get a shoe that will keep you from sliding.
The boxing shoe sole is an important feature as it will affect your balance and how you throw punches. A shoe that cannot connect your foot and the ground as it absorbs shock will spell doom for any boxer. Therefore, as you fit into your new boxing shoe make sure they are balanced.
The thickness of the sole, on the other hand, depends with a boxer’s preference, however, a thin sole will enhance your footwork and you can easily adapt to it, though some boxers prefer thick soles because of the extra support.
Lastly, you need to be wary of the width of your shoe when worn, for one it should not leave a lot of space or pinch your foot. A sliding foot inside the shoe will make you lose balance and a pinching shoe will restrict your movements so choose a correctly fitting shoe.
There are a variety of quality boxing shoes for both men and women, for example, the Adidas Performance Men’s Combat Speed 5, the Ringside Power Boxing Shoe and the Title Speed-Flex Encore Tall Boxing Shoe.
Boxing Hand wraps
It might not seem logical to use hand wraps when you are going to put on your gloves, but remember your gloves do not offer 100% protection and that is why you have to use hand wraps. The purpose of hand wraps is to protect your finger bones and tendons.
Another important fact is that hand wraps will prevent your skin from tearing. They are not only worn when attending boxing fights but also during training or when you are sparring with your partner. Therefore, you need to make sure that you can throw numerous punches when in the ring or while doing your bag practice and only a good hand wrap can guarantee that.
How to select a good hand wrap
We will look at three types of hand wraps first there is the Reusable Cloth, Tape and Gauze and the Elastic Bandage. All the above function differently, the tape gauze, for example, offers the most protection, is light in weight and comes in a variety of sizes.
The Reusable Wraps, on the other hand, come in a variety of colors and lengths. You will, therefore, choose one with regards to the protection you want, and they are usually available at in 180 and 210 inches long. People with smaller hands should go for shorter lengths but people with larger hands will be best suited with longer lengths.
The Elastic Bandage stretches well compared to the reusable cloth, and have the ability to conform to the shape of your hands as you throw punches. The elasticity does not permit it to loosen when you work out.
The width of your selected hand wrap depends on the one that you feel works best on your hands, you might also want to invest in hand wraps that are durable. Some hand wraps come complete with fastening, which is an added advantage as it reduces the chances of tearing. You will also need a hook and loop fastenings that add to the longevity of your hand wrap.
Lastly, don’t forget to fit your hand wraps with your boxing gloves during purchase, because you will then be able to know if they are comfortable according to how they will fit and remember to clean your hands before wrapping.
How to wrap the boxing hand wrap
- Use one hand to pick the wrap material.
- Turn the other hand to face away from you, then spread your fingers and put your thumb on the wrap and loop the wrap to hold it in place.
- Now wrap your wrist three times but do not restrict your hand’s blood circulation.
- Wrap your thumb again then your wrist three times to secure.
- Make sure the wrap is well-fitting, and then you can now start wrapping your knuckles from the right side as you move to the left.
- After which you will then bring the wrap back to your wrist and circle it around
- When well fastened pull it up between the middle and the ring finger and wrap it across the palm and pull it back over the top of your thumb.
- You will then wrap it around the knuckles and circle it around your wrist for the last time, after which you can now secure it with the fasteners.