A heavy bag is a designated piece of equipment that is whole purpose is training punches and combinations alongside footwork and movement. Heavy bags are the most basic piece of equipment in boxing and are common in fitness clubs and local gyms too making them very popular among non boxers too.
But in boxing, there are more kinds of heavy bags, and each of them serves a sole purpose by itself.
Heavy bags exist in boxing:
Each heavy bag in boxing is designed for a specific training purpose. Here we will review them and their purpose:
Traditional heavy bag
The most common type of heavy bag that is typically used to train punches and combinations in boxing.
The reflex bag is designed to move and respond to punches to improve the fighter’s reaction time, hand-eye coordination, reflexes, and speed. It has a stand system connected to it that makes it move and bounce back.
The double-end bag is designed to move in an awkward side-to-side angle and respond accordingly to punches, it improves reflexes, coordination, and speed. The double-end bag is hung to the ceiling and floor with a bungee cord.
A wall bag is usually used to practice punches on the head and chin. This specific bag makes the wall alongside the bag padding absorb the punch and thus make it stiff. This bag improves the power and accuracy of punches to the head and chin.
The aqua bag as the name suggests is filled with water and hung to the ceiling with a chain connected to it. It is used to improve movement and dodging punches as well as coordination and timing.
Angled Heavy Bag
The angled heavy bag is designed to simulate punches against an angled surface such as a human target, specifically the body and head. The angled heavy bag improves the accuracy of punches, speed, and power.
Uppercut heavy bag (wrecking ball heavy bag)
As the name suggests this bag is specifically designed for practicing uppercuts. Its shape is shorter and wider than a traditional heavy bag with a more angled shape to simulate the right position to throw the uppercut punch.
The speed bag is used to improve hand and eye coordination, reaction time, and speed and helps build a rhythm for punches. It also builds upper body strength and cardiovascular endurance. The speed bag is one of the most important ones among the bags and is the most iconic one.
Why to use different heavy bags?
Each of the heavy bags is used for developing strength and technique, boxers use these specialized bags for specific types of training. For example, a boxer like Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is using a wrecking ball heavy bag when he wants to practice his uppercut and dodging skill.
What weights exist for heavy bags and why?
Traditional heavy bag weight is between 70 to 160 pounds (31kg to 72kg) and greater, the weight is important because it needs to provide enough resistance to your punches and combinations. If you are hitting the heavy bag and it’s swinging excessively it means that you either don’t punch well or either the heavy bag is too light.
A perfect weight-heavy bag should not move much when you punch it so you won’t need to reposition it between each punch.
Each heavy bag has a different purpose, a boxer can choose a specific one to train what he lacks or want to improve in his skillset and according to the heavy bag purpose, this makes every single one of them a necessary piece of equipment in every boxing gym.
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