There are many kinds of boxing gloves that provide different protection to users. Before choosing boxing gloves, you need to know how to choose boxing gear for beginners. Generally speaking, there are three main types of boxing gloves: bag/punching pad gloves; sparring gloves; competition-style gloves.
We all know that choosing the right pair of boxing gloves is important to your safety and comfort during training sessions, but it’s hard to figure out what you need without a little help from experts in the field.
We also understand how overwhelming it can be when starting out with boxing because we were there too! That’s why we created this guide on how to choose the best gloves for your needs. The information here will help make your decision easier so that you can get back into the ring faster than ever before!
Boxing gloves types:
According to the function, people can choose the appropriate boxing gloves respectively.
- Bag / Punching Pad Gloves
This type of boxing is most commonly used in fitness workouts, physical therapy, and warm-up before a sparring session. They are usually made from vinyl or leather with foam-padded backing for wrist support and protection. The padding provides minimal protection for the hands and wrist, so they are not recommended for any type of boxing or sparring training. The lightweight diminishes power in punches but increases speed.
- Sparring Gloves
Sparring gloves provide a more realistic training experience by allowing users to punch with greater force without damaging their hands. These gloves have more padding than bag gloves (usually about 1 inch thick). The wrist support is provided by an attached thumb or loop.
- Competition Gloves
Competition gloves are designed to protect your hands while still allowing you to throw punches with power. They usually have less padding, which also makes them lighter weight for faster movement. The wrist support is generally less secure than the other types of boxing gloves. They should be used only for training or sparring, not competition.
Factors to consider when choosing boxing gloves:
How to choose boxing gloves? There are some things you need to keep in mind when choosing a pair of boxing gloves: how much padding do you want? how much wrist support do you require? how much weight do you want? how is the ventilation (and how does it affect the glove’s weight)? how much is your budget? how often do you intend to use them? what type of training are you doing (sparring, bag work, etc.)?
- How much padding do you want? If you’re bag or pad work is very light, a thinner glove would be more comfortable. If you want to spar without hurting your opponent or yourself, go with thicker padding.
- How much wrist support do you require? The more support the better as it reduces the chances of spraining or breaking your wrist. In addition, some boxing gloves also provide a loop around the wrist for greater support.
- How much weight do you want? The weight of boxing gloves usually varies between 8oz to 20oz. It’s recommended that beginners start with a 12-14 oz glove, which is lighter but still provides enough protection for your hand. The heavier the glove, the more power you can generate, but it will also increase your chance of injury and fatigue. Read here more about the right size for gloves.
- How is the ventilation (and how does it affect the glove’s weight)? If you’re using them for boxing or sparring, highly ventilated gloves will not provide enough protection when hitting a heavy bag or when getting punched in the face.
- How much is your budget? Generally speaking, cheap gloves are made from cheap material and will not last long. Expensive gloves provide excellent protection and last longer, but it’s up to you how much money you’re willing to pay.
- How often do you intend to use them? If you’ll be training at least once a week, get a mid-range glove; if more than 3-5 times a week, get a good glove.
- How is the padding distributed? Some boxing gloves have more padding in the wrist area, which provides more support but also makes these gloves heavier. Other boxing gloves have added protection on knuckles and thumb areas, which reduces the impact against your sparring partner but sacrifices some comfort.
Often times how you distribute the weight is more important than how much padding is available. Some gloves will have one inch of padding across four knuckles with considerable gaps in between, which can still provide enough protection if the weight distribution allows you to hit hard without hurting your hands.
- How well does it hold up? Generally, you could expect between 6-12 months of use of how the boxing gloves are holding up depending on how well they are made. If you are using your gloves for sparring, make sure the stitching is wrapped around the padding well so that it does not unravel when hit or when grabbing your partner’s hand during grappling situations. Also, check to see how the glove’s materials are sewed together; how often your boxing gloves tear can depend on how well they are made.
- How long does it take to break in? This is not really how to choose boxing gloves, but something you will need to do regardless of what type of boxing equipment you buy. All gloves require some breaking in so they can conform to how your hand moves, but how long it takes will depend on how heavy the gloves are and how thick the padding is (more padding won’t break in as quickly).
- What type of training are you doing (sparring, bag work, etc.)? If you’re only using boxing gloves for hitting a heavy bag, you can get away with less padding. However, it’s best to invest in a glove that will protect your hands even during sparring sessions.
- How are they for grappling/wrestling? If you plan to use boxing gloves for wrestling or grappling situations where you need to grab the opponent’s head gear or uniform, make sure the glove’s padding is not too thick. Otherwise, you won’t be able to grab your opponent and will risk injuring your fingers in the process.
- How do they feel? Boxing gloves should fit like a comfortable pair of shoes: tight enough that no extra space exists between your hands and the padding, but loose enough that circulation and movement are not restricted. It will be uncomfortable at first, but your hands and wrist should adjust to how you’re boxing gloves naturally after a few rounds.
Before purchasing a pair of boxing gloves, be sure to check out some of our recommendations!
The hand is one of the most sensitive areas of the human anatomy; thus, you need to choose boxing gloves that are not only comfortable but also suited to your needs. You may wish to look at the following resources for help determining which boxing gloves are better suited for you:
Our guide about choosing the right size of gloves
To conclude, how to choose boxing gloves is affected by how you intend to use the gloves (sparring, bag work, etc.), how much you’re willing to pay for them, how often do you plan on using them, how well they hold up over time, what type of training are you doing with them (bag work vs sparring), how long the gloves take it to break-in, how much padding they have, how thick the glove’s padding is, how much support are they giving you when training, how comfortable they are.
P.S.: Always remember that if you feel any sort of pain while boxing with your boxing gloves, stop immediately and seek medical attention if needed.