What to look for when buying gloves for the heavy bag?

What to look for when buying gloves for the heavy bag?

One of the most well known and practiced combat sports is boxing. It’s the art of punching with accuracy, power and speed while maintaining efficient footwork. Like every sport, consistent training is essential to become a formidable force against your opponent. The right gear to enhance your performance and protect yourself from injury is required for effective training. 

When it comes to training on the heavy bag, having the right gloves is crucial. It can get overwhelming to choose the right gloves for training with a heavy bag. This is because boxing gloves have several types and variations. In this article, we will break down what to look for when buying gloves for the heavy bag—or more specifically, bag gloves. 

What are Boxing Bag Gloves?

Boxing gloves come in different shapes and sizes. Each type of glove has a unique function and is used accordingly. For training your punching power and speed, a heavy bag provides a tactical edge. However, heavy bags are rigid bags and can cause damage to your hands if you don’t use the right gloves. The commonly used boxing gloves when training on a heavy bag is a boxing bag glove.

Boxing bag gloves are specifically designed to train on a heavy bag. They protect your hands from sustaining injury when hitting a heavy bag. They have dense padding around the knuckle area to absorb the impact of punches. Bag gloves are also designed to be easily worn and taken off. It generally has a rubber strap for the enclosure of the glove. However, this reduces safety of the wrist as compared to other gloves

Bag Gloves vs Sparring Gloves

Bag gloves are designed for training on the heavy bag, while sparring gloves are designed for live sparring sessions. The main difference between the two is the padding. Sparring gloves have thicker padding to protect both you and your sparring partner from injury during sparring sessions. The padding on the sparring gloves however is not just on the knuckles. It's all around the glove. This is to avoid injury from blocking strikes during sparring. Bag gloves, on the other hand, have denser padding to absorb the impact of punches on the heavy bag. Sparring gloves are not designed to hit heavy bags as they can’t withstand the constant impact of hitting a heavy bag. This can lead to the gloves breaking down quickly, and not providing adequate protection for your hands.

Another difference is that bag gloves are generally thumbless. The shape of the bag glove ensures mobility of the thumb. This is to train boxers to properly clinch their fists before striking. However, it increases the risk of injuring your thumb. Sparring gloves however restricts the motion of your thumb. Depending on the model of the glove, sparring gloves are designed to keep your thumb static. 

What to Look for in Bag Gloves?


The material of the gloves can greatly impact your training experience. Leather gloves are comfortable to wear. They also are durable and can last for decades when used properly. Synthetic leather or vinyl gloves are more affordable, but they do not last as long or be as comfortable as leather gloves. 


The amount of padding in your gloves is crucial for protecting your hands during training on the heavy bag. Bag gloves typically have denser padding than sparring gloves, with more padding around the knuckles or on top. This padding helps absorb the impact of punches, preventing injury to your hands.


Gloves that are the right size for your hands are essential for ensuring a comfortable and safe training experience. Small gloves can cause your hands to cramp and restrict blood flow, while gloves that are larger are looser. This can lead to discomfort when striking the bag. For an optimal experience, wear a glove that fits well on your hand.

Types of bag gloves

Training Boxing Gloves: Training boxing gloves are standard gloves that can also be used in heavy bag training. They commonly have high quality leather and have layered foam padding to protect your hands from injuries. They are available in different sizes.

Gel Bag Gloves: Gel bag gloves have a layer of gel padding instead of just foam padding. This provides more impact resistance than a traditional bag glove. It also absorbs shock when used to strike a rigid surface like a heavy bag. This reduces the impact on your hands and wrists and avoids sustaining damage. 

MMA Bag Gloves: MMA bag gloves are designed specifically for mixed martial arts training. These gloves are flexible and smaller in size as compared to traditional bag gloves. This allows the trainee to move their hands and fingers. To allow grappling, MMA bag gloves are also designed to be lightweight and feature an open-palm design.

Old School Bag Gloves: Old school bag gloves resemble the punching gloves used back in the 1800’s. These gloves are not designed for training your punching strength. They have minimal padding providing a raw, bare-knuckle feel. This is to increase the accuracy of each strike and perfect your punching technique. 

Speed Bag Gloves: A speed bag is designed to develop striking and defensive reflexes. You can train with speed bags using hand wraps or wear speed bag gloves. Speed bag gloves are lightweight, allowing for greater hand speed and dexterity. Speed bag gloves are typically made of synthetic materials and have open fingers to provide more flexibility.

Advantages of Bag Gloves:

Protection: Punching bags are rigid. It can cause severe hand injury if you train barehanded or use inappropriate gloves. Bag gloves are designed to provide protection to your hands and wrists while hitting a punching bag. They have sufficient padding to absorb the impact of each strike and prevent injury.

Versatility: Bag gloves can be used to train a variety of skills such as striking accuracy, power, speed, reflexes and agility. Depending on what type of bag glove you use, you can improve your overall fighting experience.

Lightweight: Most bag gloves are lightweight. This not only provides comfort but also increases striking speed. These gloves are also easy to wear and take off.

Durability: Bag gloves are made of high-quality materials such as pure or synthetic leather. Depending on the material, the durability of the bag glove increases. It can withstand long and rough training sessions.

Affordable: Despite their durability, bag gloves are relatively inexpensive compared to other types of gloves used in combat sports. This quality makes it desirable for beginners or anyone on a low budget.

Disadvantages of Bag Gloves:

Limited Wrist Protection: Although most bag gloves have denser padding which protects from knuckle injuries, they lack protection for the wrist. These gloves only enclose the wrist using a strap which reduces its safety

Not Suitable for other training: Bag gloves are not suitable for professional boxing matches, sparring, or anything outside of hitting the bag or punching pads. 


Bag gloves are affordable, versatile, and durable gloves for training. While they may not offer the same level of protection as sparring gloves,They provide sufficient protection when striking heavy bags. However, users should be aware of the limitations of bag gloves and make sure to choose a pair best suited for their training technique.

When it comes to choosing the right gloves for training on the heavy bag, there are several important factors to consider. Bag gloves are specifically designed for heavy bag training, with denser padding to absorb the impact of punches. Sparring gloves should not be used on the heavy bag, as they do not provide adequate protection for your hands.

When choosing bag gloves, consider the material, padding, wrist support, and size. Leather gloves are more durable and comfortable, while synthetic leather or vinyl gloves are more affordable. Look for gloves with dense padding, sturdy wrist support, and a comfortable fit to ensure a safe and enjoyable training experience.

By taking the time to choose the right gloves for your training needs, you can enhance your performance and protect yourself from injury. With these tips in mind, you can confidently choose the perfect pair of gloves