Do boxing gloves make you punch harder?

Do you really need boxing gloves? If you are taking up boxing training, or are planning to engage in either sparring or an actual fight, you should have this crucial part of your boxing gear. Gloves are designed to offer protection against injury to boxers’ biggest weapons: the hands and head. While gloves will not completely mitigate the risk of injury to these very sensitive parts of your body, they will provide padded protection that has proven to be valuable for many fighters. So what do gloves really offer? Will they influence your ability in the ring? Do boxing gloves make you punch harder? We explore boxing gloves with this article to assess their value, as well as provide a few training tips to help you build up your punching power for harder hits.

What do your gloves really offer?

Boxing gloves offer great value for protection when training and in the ring. You will be able to land heavy hits without worrying about causing injury to your hands and wrist, which can facilitate more consistency in training. Without gloves, you may not be able to take up certain types of boxing training too frequently. Gloves also offer resistance benefits, but this is generally dependent on the type. When boxing with gloves, you add anywhere between 1-3 pounds on your hands, and this will cause faster hand fatigue. As you train more intensively and frequently, you will be better able to handle the weight and could improve your ability to keep your guard up at all times.

Many people tend to think that gloves make hits harder, but that is far from the case. In fact, gloves soften punches. But how does that work? For starters, gloves will increase the surface area of a puncher’s hand. The bulkier fist will dissipate impact across the punched surface, which reduces the force felt per square inch. You will less likely to experience cuts and lacerations with gloves than with a bare-knuckled punch. You need to keep in mind that you can still get a concussion with gloves, which necessitates necessary safety precautions in the ring.

The gloves also affect the speed of a punch, as explored in the resistance benefits above. By adding some weight onto a fighter’s hands, gloves will work to lower the velocity of a punch which will have an effect on the power. Gloves lack aerodynamic properties, which means that every punch will face a significant reduction in velocity when thrown. Gloves will also use heavy duty padding to make them bulkier, which ties well with the velocity in reducing the power of your punches.

Does fist size matter for boxing?

A common misconception suggests fighters with bigger hands will generate more power with their punches. Yet your fists have very little to do with the hardness of your punches, similarly to how your car’s wheels have hardly any impact on the top speed. If the size of your hands had that significant an impact on your power, perhaps the competition authorities would have incorporated it in matchups for more even fight. When it comes to boxing, fighters with smaller hands may outpunch those with larger hands. It is all about the technique, form and power as opposed to fist size.

The right boxing training will be key to helping you maximize your power for harder punches. You should be relaxed when taking up training to avoid making your muscles tense and rigid, and should follow the right foot techniques as well. With regular training, you should be able to punch harder regardless of the size of your hands.

Boxing training exercises to help you punch harder

Boxing training is very intensive, but it only reflects the heavy demands of the sport. Boxers are some of the best conditioned athletes in the world, with the sport requiring high fitness levels. They also have to take up different types of training to sharpen various aspects of their game. With the right boxing training, you could improve your punching power, fine tune your movement or enhance your endurance. These training efforts will work to make your punches harder.

Form and technique training

No matter how hard you try, you can never land shots outside your reach. You need to determine this distance before working on your technique to help you optimize your landing accuracy. Once you figure it out, it will be the bar for your technique training. You should work with this distance to land shots in the right way, helping you to naturally gain proper form. As you engage in this type of exercise more often, you will be better able to improve your coordination and accuracy, which are both key to landing harder hits.


If you take up intensive application with other types of boxing training, you will often feel the burnout. Overexerting yourself only puts you at a higher risk of injury, and will have an effect on your ability to train consistently. While your strength training will help you build up power, aerobic training could be key to helping you maintain it. You will be better able to land harder hits consistently if you can outlast your opponent.

Weight training

You need to build strong upper body muscles to develop the strength for harder hits. You should focus on your back and shoulders with weight training to help build up the power in this region. You can boost your arms with bicep curls, while working on your shoulders with pull ups and shoulder presses. Bench presses could help build up your chest as well.

Final word

So, do boxing gloves make you punch harder? Not quite. Boxing gloves are designed to soften your hits, and only the right training to help to build your strength and power, as well as boost musculoskeletal development will affect your punches. Boxing gloves work to soften hits and reduce impact, offering protection to both fighters. They are designed to reduce the effect of hits, after all. But that does not mean that the risk of injury is completely eliminated. If you are taking up boxing training, sparring or engaging in a bout, you should always seek to stay as safe as possible. Make sure you have the right gear when you engage, and keep in touch with the fundamentals.