You might be wondering, why train with a punch bag? Which muscles does it work out? Which bag should you choose? Read on to find our answers to these questions.
The benefits of using a punch bag
Training with a punch bag provides a number of important benefits when practising a sport. It's important to bear in mind that before starting to use a punch bag, you should first learn the proper punching techniques of throwing punches without hitting a target, in order to throw your punches properly and avoid injuries. The punches thrown without a target should be sweeping, supple and elastic.
For boxers, one of the main benefits of punch bag training is that it increases the effectiveness of punching exercises (compared with using no bag), and provides tangible feedback during the exercises. It's a good way to feel the energy with which you are landing your punches, and working on your technique. While training, experienced boxers often perform a series of muscle-building and cardio exercises by alternating between punching, jump-rope, and push-ups.
For those practising combat sports, or any sport or fitness activity that includes mastering these basics, the punch bag has several benefits. It will:
- Tone your muscles, by working out your shoulders, triceps, pectoral (chest) and dorsal (back) muscles.
- Boost your punching power
- Increase your resistance and endurance
- Effectively work out your cardiovascular system (punch bag training is physically demanding).
- Burn off steam, which helps to relieve everyday stress and anxiety.
How to choose and use your punch bag
The first step to proper punch bag training is choosing the right punch bag—one that is suited to your workout. Firstly, there are three different types of material used to make punch bags:
- cloth: used for punch bags that are designed for recreational punching
- polyurethane: designed for regular use
- leather: designed for regular or frequent use. Leather makes the bag more durable.
On average, punch bags weigh 20 to 30 kg and are 80 to 120 cm long. If doing both punches and kicks, a 120 cm bag should be used. We recommend hanging the bag in your home so that the top of the bag is 10 cm higher than the height of the person who will be using it. This height will need to be adjusted if you will be doing kicks and punches. Lastly, you should clean your punch bag using a sponge and water (soapy or non-soapy); do not use any chemical detergents.
Some advice from Laurent Avril, Domyos combat sports product manager
Your choice of punch bag will depend on how often you plan to use it.
- TB390: for infrequent use, mostly just for fun
- TB 580: for regular use
- TB 1200: for regular, frequent use.
- Cardio Boxing kit: a complete boxing training kit that includes punch bag gloves, a punch bag, and a jump rope.
- For children: the Punching Bag, an inflatable punch bag that is soft and fun to use!
Training with a punch bag must be done while wearing a pair of gloves. These may be fingerless gloves with foam or gel cushioning, or gloves specially designed for punch bag training. Standard boxing gloves may also be used but are much too hot for this type of activity. Additionally, in order to provide effective protection and ensure moisture absorption and proper hygiene, fingerless mitts or boxing wrap (for experienced boxers) should be worn under the gloves.