Every boxer understands the importance of a boxing bag. When they first get into the sport, they will be taught a variety of techniques and punches on a punching bag.
It is only by mastering the boxing bag that fighters can progress and move on to actual competitions or sparring matches. There are different types available. Find out more about the different uses of each and why these are characterized by a number of features. Here are tips.
Getting Familiar with the Boxing Bag
The boxing bag or punching bag, is present in all boxing gyms and clubs. It is considered as the staple training tool that will equip both amateur and professional boxers with the power, endurance, speed and strength they need to win bouts.
Regardless of the level or type of fighter, the bag will always be part of the training program. There are several kinds of bags available and each has a unique function that will hone specific traits and skills among fighters. From your very first training sessions until after you’ve had actual fights and sparring matches, you will still need the bags to increase your skill and get better in the different techniques.
Characteristics of the Boxing Bag
The boxing bag is generally characterized by a padded material. The interior is filled with cloth, sand, air or other materials to completely give it form and shape. The typical punching bag has a columnar shape, measuring about 70 to 75 inches in length and having a diameter of about 24 inches.
The exterior is covered with heavy duty material like leather, synthetic leather or vinyl. The outer covering is stitched well to ensure that the bag stays intact as it absorbs powerful strikes and punches. Regardless of its name, the boxing bag is also ideal for other types of fighters like kickboxers, mixed martial artists, karate fighters and Muay Thai fighters since its long form allows it to absorb kicks and knee strikes too.
The Basic Types of Boxing Bag
When you first start boxing, you will most likely be introduced to the heavy bag. This type of boxing bag resembles a columnar shape and is generally heavy, weighing about 50 to 200 pounds, depending on the materials used and the size. It is used by fighters to increase their strength and punching power.
The bag is either suspended via a cable or chain from a high bar or the ceiling or propped up by a metal or wooden support from underneath. The hanging type is the most common and is present in all boxing gyms and clubs. Whenever you punch or strike the bag, it will sway, absorbing the impact. The idea is to perform very powerful punches and feel the motion. As a result, the shoulders, arms and forearms get a very intense workout. Boxers usually work on the heavy bag for 30 to 60 minutes.
The speed boxing bag is the second most common type. Also called the speed ball, it resembles a teardrop and hangs from an overhead board. It is filled inside with air or cloth and will typically bounce when taking punches and hits. This is a great workout for boxers who wish to improve in their hand-eye coordination, speed and synchronization. Another type of speed bag is the double-ended bag which is held by two tension or rubber cables at the top and bottom. It is also great for hand-eye coordination and improving the accuracy of strikes and punches. Boxers work on these for about 30 to 60 minutes too.
More Advanced Types of Boxing Bag
The torso boxing bag is a unique type of training tool that takes the shape and form of a human body. It is held up by a bar from underneath just like a standing bag. The strike bag is another kind, which can also have very unique shapes and forms. There is one bag that has a smaller diameter at the base and then halfway up, increases in diameter by about 6 to 8 inches. This is to allow boxers to practice uppercuts and other special punches.
Training with a Boxing Bag
The boxing bag is used to improve both basic and advanced strikes and punches. It is also great for practicing different combinations, using techniques like jabs, hooks, straight punches and uppercuts. The size of the bag allows you to clinch it. You can simulate actual ring settings or have another person position himself behind the bag if you’re doing very powerful punches. Coaches and trainers will always have drills done on the bags. At first, you will only be taught one technique at a time. When you get better at these, you will be taught combinations that feature two, three or more punches and jabs.
Getting Your Own Boxing Bag
It’s ideal to train with a boxing bag at your local gym or boxing club first before setting up your own at home. Some people can also get a lot of benefits by getting their own punching bag. These can easily be set up in your garage, basement or a spare room, together with other boxing equipment and tools.
Both beginners, recreational and professional boxers will benefit from a home gym that features a boxing bag. Some people spend 30 to 60 minutes a day on the bag and burn anywhere between 300 and 800 calories per session. The bag is a very effective tool for shedding fat and staying lean.
The standard heavy bag will cost around $80. The speed ball costs about $50. Other special forms will cost around $50 to $120 depending on the type and brand. Read more about the various brands and companies first before getting your own. You also need to prepare a stable overhead bar to hang the bag from.
In most cases, the chain, cable or rope will be supplied together with other accessories for setting up. Preparing the boxing bag will only take about 20 to 30 minutes. You can start training immediately. Training with the tool 3 to 5 times per week will be sufficient in improving your skills, building strength and fat loss.