Written by Alistair Knight | 17 October 2020
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This is the ultimate review for the best punching bags you can find online.
Within this review, you’re going to see:
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My name is Alistair and I’ve been an amateur boxer for three years now. I’ve hit a lot of different punching bags over time, and I understand how frustrating the problems are with punch bags like splitting and damages to the ceiling.
I have written dozens of fighting equipment reviews across multiple websites and right now, my goal is to help find you the best punch bag which best suits you and your goals.
Helpful note on purchasing location: If you like the look of a product, the link you can click on will take you to Amazon for your country. I.e. Amazon.com if you’re in the US.
Absorbs your punches nicely: The Dripex free-standing bag comes with Dual TPU absorbers as well as 360° springs which help absorb your shots and prevent noise. You’re also able to remove the strings yourself for less vibration, meaning, you can do an intensive strength training workout.
Super stable: The base of this Dripex bag literally sucks to any surface you’d like to use it on. The reason why is because there are 12 strong suction cups beneath. Furthermore, you’re able to add up to 137lbs of water and 182lbs of sand which is recommended for extra stability.
Fine quality: The stainless steel tube which runs down the spine of the bag is enclosed with layers of high-density foam, eco-friendly fabric and an exterior PU leather for great tear resistance as well as a fast rebound. This means you’re able to safely throw knees, elbows, and kicks, although, we’d recommend wearing gloves and a quality pair of hand wraps.
It can move around over time: Some people have found that they need to use gravel and fill the base with water as the bag can move around over time.
The Dripex bag is the best free standing punch bag for any ability and it can be used on any surface.
It’s high quality, somewhat sturdy, and also absorbs your punches/kicks well.
Inexpensive: This punching bag with a stand costs half the amount of all the other free-standing bags reviewed on this list.
Can be used for both adults and children: This LIONS punch bag stands at 5ft 5 which is the perfect height for hitting an opponent chin (if you’re an adult) and isn’t too big for a child to use.
Soft, fine materials: With multiple layers of foam construction and a leather exterior striking surface, you can throw any punches or kicks without breaking the bag and without hurting yourself.
You need to assemble it: The base and the bag come in two separate boxes, so you’ll need to follow the instructions which arrive with the product to set it up.
This should only take ten to fifteen minutes and you can easily contact LIONS (the seller).
In summary, the Lions Free Standing Punch Bag is a great punching bag for any ability and any age.
The bag is well padded and durable thanks to the foam and leather. It’s also incredibly cheap in comparison to other punching bags reviewed on this guide.
EVA soft foam: This best-selling free standing punching bag is composed of multiple layers of EVA foam meaning you can strike it with any part of your body. However, it is still hard to hit so it’s best to wear boxing gloves with it.
Sturdy: The base of the punch bag is 65cm long and it can be filled with either sand or water to really help stabilise on any surface.Ch
Unpleasant smell: The exterior of the TurnerMAX punch bag is made from synthetic leather which is known to smell pretty pungent. However, over time this smell with go away.
Not that sturdy if filled with water: If you’re a heavy weight or a big hitter, the base can move around so it’s best to fill it with dry sand which is approximately 30% heavier than water.
The foam and general size of the TurnerMAX bag is good and it will serve as a great piece of equipment for any fighter of any ability.
However, it can smell a bit when brand new and it’s best to fill it with sand if you get it.
Free gloves, bracket chain, and skipping rope: Free add-ons are always great to receive, and this heavy bag comes with three different ones!
Prefilled: This can be either a positive or a negative for you, but a pre-filled bag is so much easier to set up and it saves you having to buy sand/foam from your local merchants.
Great reviews: The MAXX professional punch bag has excellent reviews online and is even an Amazon recommended product.
The bolts are known to be quite weak: Many people have found that the bolts simply snap off after five minutes of using it. But, if you buy some extra bolts from the local merchant dealer this shouldn’t be a problem for you.
Overall, the MAXX heavy bag is great for anyone with any ability and it even comes with free items too!
However, I’d recommend going to your local merchant and show them the bracket it comes with as you’ll need to buy more because the brackets have a history of breaking.
Multiple sizes for both children and adults: As the bag is only 5ft, it is both suitable for children and adults who prefer a lighter bag.
Prefilled: A prefilled bag is much easier to set up than an unfilled bag, this means you will be able to start your workout when it arrives at your doorstep.
The heavy bag comes with a decent skipping rope: While the rest of the accessories are low-quality, the skipping rope isn’t too bad and would be suitable for any beginner.
The bracket is poor: Multiple people have complained about the bracket which can either come loose or the bag simply comes off of it when hit hard. For this reason, I’d recommend buying a bracket separately at the local merchant.
The bag is good, but forget the rest: This bag comes with over 11 different accessories – which sounds great… on paper. The accessories will be suitable for any newbie looking to start throwing punches. But if you’re a more seasoned fighter, buy your training equipment separately as these are of low quality.
The ONEX Pre-Filled Heavy Bag is overall: good. The training bag is brilliant and it has proven to last a long time. However, the bracket and the accessories which come with it are many designed to get you to buy the bag because… when you start using them, you’ll find you’ll want to put them away again.
So, if you’re happy to get a great heavy bag and are willing to buy a separate bracket, then this will hold up well for you.
Good stitching and material: What is impressive with the SOGO sport heavy bag is how precise the stitching is.
It’s clearly well manufactured and the people who have used the bag have never complained about rips and tears. This is probably due to the fact that the exterior is made with a super strong tear-resistant fabric called nylon.
Train anywhere you like: Thanks to the strong exterior nylon fabric, you can use this heavy bag in any room of your home or any outdoor area. You also have multiple sizes to choose from. The smaller size you get, the easier it will be to throw uppercuts/head-kicks but a larger bag is best when you’re looking to throw leg kicks and body hooks.
Free delivery: Surprisingly, the other heavy bags above require you to pay extra for delivery. The SOGO Sport heavy bag on the other hand does not.
Too light for some heavy hitter: Some heavier hitters have complained that the bag is too light to hit (which is great if you have children) but can feel like hitting a pillow with too much movement.
The good thing above lots of movement is that you’ll be able to move your feet around more (something you want to get into the habit of doing)
In summary, the SOGO Sport heavy bag is in the list of the top 3 heavy bags because it has all of the following: durability, practicality, and versatility (everything you want from a heavy bag).
Yes, if you’re a heavy-weight, this bag might be too light for you, but then again: the move it swings, the more realistic it will be to your opponent in the ring/cage. So in my opinion (and the opinion of the reviewers), this would make the perfect addition to any fighters gym.
Height adjustable: Are you small or tall? Good is the answer! Because you can adjust this dummy from 60 inches (5ft) up to 78 inches (6.5ft).
Sturdy once filled with sand: The base of the dummy can either be filled with water or sand. But… if you’re a strong, heavy hitter, I’d recommend filling it with sand because it is over 30% heavier than water.
Useful for technical shots or power punches: The realistic manikin can be used for any type of strike/combination. You can even dress BOB up in the worst football/soccer shirt you know and let out your frustration (common Tottenham)! Okay, maybe that’s too much? 😉
Easy to move around: For the gym, for the garden, for the bedroom, wherever you want to hit BOB, he is waiting for you.
Note: I’d recommend bringing BOB indoors after you’ve finished abusing him because he doesn’t like being left outside in the wind and rain. (I’m being serious, his rubber skin will wear down and you won’t want holes in your BOB)
Expensive: Century are the real deal when it comes to a successful BOB dummy brand, but this dummy retails at very high prices and also includes delivery expenses.
The screws can rust and pop out: If you hit the bag hard and leave it outdoors, BOBs screws will unscrew and rust over time. Some people have to screw them tight again after every session.
Overall, if you’re a professional fighter looking for a more realistic target or a football hooligan looking to get the most out of some unpunishable skin, then the Century BOB is for you.
Beware however, that when you click on the link below, you might find the price too high and therefore need to review the third Dummy on this list (at a quarter of the price).
Longer body: The XL BOB now also includes a lower pelvic area. The benefit of this is primarily for MMA fighters/kick boxers who have more of a target to hit than the standard ‘upper torso’ dummy.
Tallest (and shortest) adjustable dummy on this list: This dummy can stand up to 6.8 ft tall (equivalent of Tyson Fury) tall and 5ft small. This makes it perfect for both children and adults.
Very expensive: This dummy is priced in the mid 3-figures, making it one expensive piece of training equipment.
Overall, if you have a good amount of budget and want to have fun training with a more realistic target, then this is a great BOB dummy to buy.
High-quality PU Grain Leather: PU grain leather is a good material and is one of the most common leathers for making boxing/MMA gloves.
Easy to move around: You can easily empty the sand or get a strong friend to help you move it from your gym to your home or garden.
Great way to stay fit and healthy: A fun way of letting off some steam and it is something professional fighters use to train.
Well-priced: Not only does this Bodyrip punch bag come with free delivery, but it is also ½ the price of any of the other dummy bags reviewed above, therefore making it suitable for those on lower budgets.
Very light: Unfortunately, if you’re a big hitter, you’ll need to fill the dummy with sand because water is 30% lighter than sand. I’d also recommend using a funnel when adding in the sand as it can be difficult to get in.
In summary, if you’re looking for a dummy punch bag which is well priced, high quality, and easy to move around, I’d recommend going with this Bodyrip Freestanding Dummy.
Comes with 2-year manufacturers warranty: As this is the best selling water bag on the market, the company now allow a 2-year manufacturers warranty so that if you punch your way into any faults, you might be able to get some warranty.
You can throw multiple (realistic) strikes: The shape of this Aqua bag allows you to perform any strike/combo in the arsenal (knees, elbows, left hooks, you name it!). The fact that you’ve got both the shape and the movement of the swing makes this water bag much better (and cheaper) than any dummy bag you can buy.
Wrinkle-free bag: The Aqua bag now comes with a new valve system which allows you to pump up the bag (once it’s filled with water) meaning your water bag stays in good shape without getting any wrinkles.
Both adults and children can use it: The bag is attached to a hanging kit which can be adjusted depending on how tall you or your child is.
Quite expensive: This bag comes at quite a high price tag: low-end three figures but it is cheaper than the majority of BOB freestanding dummy bags.
The Aqua Bag Bruiser will certainly enable you to pack a punch and what I find brilliant about this water bag is its realistic shape. Although more expensive, this bag is suitable for anyone and would be the one I’d personally buy. But you can…
Realistic yet protective: Hydrostrike technology makes hitting the bag feel realistic and it also serves to protect your heavy shots. Different to what you’d experience when using the heavy bag.
Very simple to fill up: Simply open the cap and fill it up with some water. Job done.
Great for throwing a variety of shots: The shape of this water punch bag makes it very easy to throw every shot in your arsenal. The main shot you can work on is upper cut, as the bag should be set at your head level.
Low in stock: This product looks like it is going to be unavailable soon.
It could leak: Two people have said that this water bag can leak after a while of hitting it.
Very hard for kicking: Any water bag you use will be hard as the exterior is made of plastic. This can be a good thing if you’re looking to condition your shins before a fight, but it’s best to stick with a softer training bag if you’re a kickboxer/muay thai/MMA fighter.
The Everlast Hydrostrike water bag is an excellent punching bag for anyone looking to improve their boxing style. I like how the hydrostrike technology imitates the feeling of hitting an opponent and I also like how simple it is to set up.
The only downside is that it is low in stock and some people have said it has leaked for them in the past, but… we don’t know what they did to the bag.
2 year manufacturers warranty: Most companies will only offer one year so this provides great reassurance for any big hitters.
You can hang it outside without a problem: The Aqua Energy bag is made with UV resistance which means you can hang it out in the hottest or coldest climates without any problem.
Easy to use and move around: First, you can very easily fill this bag up by opening the cap and inserting some water. Second, if you want to move it elsewhere, you can very easily empty the bag and set it up somewhere you prefer.
Not that suitable for kicks: Kicking a water bag with no protection can hurt a lot. It will feel like someone is slapping your shins and feet whenever you connect.
Not the most popular: It’s a new water-bag on Amazon which has some very good reviews, but not a lot of them.
Overall, Aqua Energy 15” Training Bag is joint second place in a way. It’s not overly expensive for a punching bag and the quality is very good. The only reason it isn’t higher up in this list is because it hasn’t got a lot of social proof yet. In all honesty, I haven’t tested it out myself, so this is something I’m basing off of lots of research alone.
From reviewing the top brands on Amazon’s front page for “punching bags” as well as researching the highest ranking punching bag brands on Google, the brand that came up the most included:
When your boy or girl is just starting out, I’d recommend getting something that is soft, solid, fun, and durable. When I read this sentence back again, the punching bag which comes to my mind is the PDX kids punch bag or the Dripex punch bag.
Now, at this age your child is going to be having his or her growth spurts, for this reason, I’d recommend getting a slightly larger punch bag which is still light and easy to use, but also more challenging than a bag for younger kids. You can get this XN8 free standing punch bag here (which goes up to 5ft 5) or this 6ft Gallant punch bag.
You can use any punch bag for working out at home but… if you’re looking to throw multiple combinations with power, the two best options you can choose are a free-standing punch bag or… a heavy bag.
Both of these punch bags can be set up with a few metres of space and are relatively inexpensive to buy:
A free standing punching bag is a great option (whether for indoor or outdoor use) as a heavy bag may need to be hung from the walls and can be a hassle setting up.
However, a heavy bag (even with a solid stand), is still less expensive in comparison to a high quality free standing punch bag (one that doesn’t fall over easily once hit) so if you’re on a budget, I’d recommend going with a heavy bag.
This one here is the best:
A wall bracket is something designed to hang a heavy bag up forever with the least noise possible.
This is what this AQF wall bracket does.
It can hold up to 60kg of weight (in any weather) and comes out 43 cm (half a metre) from the wall meaning you have plenty of space to move around the bag and strike from multiple angles.
The AQF wall bracket also comes with strong wall fixings, a D-shackle and clear, easy instructions to set it up.
Also, you can always refund it within 30 days if you don’t like it.
The only downside is that it doesn’t come with a chain to hold your heavy bag meaning you’ll have to buy it separately. Here is a good chain you can use.
A beginner might like to choose a punching bag which is:
A punching bag which fits this criteria would be the Lions Free Standing Punch Bag.
You can buy this on Amazon by clicking the image below:
The best punching bag a professional fighter can get is one made from high-quality materials.
What does this mean?
It means buying a bag made from fine leather and filled with a combination of different materials suited to your combat sport.
For example, a kickboxer may opt for a slightly lighter and softer bag to protect their ankles and knees from injuries.
There is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ boxing bag a professional can use and only use.
He or she needs to use a combination of multiple punch bags due the reasons labelled in the heading below (click here to jump to it).
A punching bag can be quite hard to hit sometimes, which is why we recommend using a good quality pair of boxing gloves so you have maximum protection and wrist support.
Over the last year of writing boxing glove reviews and researching what makes the best gloves the “best”, I’ve found…
The best glove is one made from high quality italian leather with quadruple layers of foam padding and solid wrist support.
When I read that sentence back to myself the boxing glove which instantly stands out in my mind is…
The hayabusa T3 boxing glove. Click this link to review the article I wrote about it.
Here are the different exterior materials punching bags can be made from with the first being the highest quality:
There are multiple grades of leather, with genuine leather (the lowest grade) being the most common. Leather is considered the best because they are both comfortable to use and durable over the long run.
You’ll also find that a leather boxing bag looks more aesthetically pleasing due to the colour of the hide.
Price: You’ll pay anywhere from £50 ($65) to £500 ($650).
In order to bring down the costs of a leather punch bag, manufactures in the fight game introduced the synthetic punch bag.
Synthetic Leather punch bags are not only durable, but they also feel similar to the real thing which is important when throwing kicks and punches over a long period of time.
Lastly, you also get to save a lot on the price…
Price: You’ll pay anywhere from £30 ($39) to £100+ ($130+).
Canvas and PU punching bags are common amongst the larger heavy bags and have been since the introduction of polyvinyl after World War 2.
Canvas and PU is a heavy cotton material which doesn’t feel great to hit with your bare feet or fists. The material also isn’t as resistant as leather or synthetic leather but it still offers a lot of resistance.
Price: You’ll pay anywhere from £20 ($30) to £90+ ($120+).
Plastic punching bags have been around since the early 1980s when Tom Critelli, who was working as a deputy sheriff invented a water-filled bag which could be drained and then refilled.
This means a plastic bag is great when using a water filled bag but I wouldn’t recommend getting any other sort of punch bag with plastic such as a plastic heavy bag.
Because the plastic material will be really uncomfortable to hit (even with boxing gloves on).
You may be wondering – ‘well, if a plastic heavy bag is bad, why should I use a plastic water-filled punch bag?’
Because a plastic water-filled bag is useful for throwing really nice upper cuts or a long range right hook without hurting your hand like you could on the heavy bag.
Price: You’ll pay anywhere from £15 ($19) with a really cheap plastic punch bag to £200 ($260) for a luxury water punch bag.
Punch bags are then filled with a particular material. This can include:
How you fill a bag is also very simple. Watch this video tutorial below to fill your heavy bag (with sand and insulation material):
Not all punch bags are created equal, and some shouldn’t be sold at all. Right now, I’m going to show you 3 things to look out for in a boxing bag so you can avoid the mistakes many other people make.
As we’ve discovered in the heading above (‘What Are Punching Bags Made Of?’), punching bags can come in multiple materials.
Typically, the higher quality the material you buy the more expensive the punching bag will be but… a better material will feel better to hit (especially if you’re throwing kicks).
The following list contains showcases different materials which make up a punch bag and its quality:
|Excellent quality||Fine leather|
|Good quality||Synthetic leather
Canvas and PU (Polyurethane)
Some punch bags you can buy online do not come filled. For some, this is a good thing because there are benefits to both a filled bag and an unfilled bag.
If you’re training for a competition: you’ll want to use a wide variety of punching bags with different shapes and weight.
The reason why this is important is because it can be easier for you to change your style of fighting when hitting multiple bags.
For example, a water-filled ball bag will be something you’d use to throw uppercuts and punching power whereas a double end bag would be something you use for reactions and timing.
Furthermore, you can easily become too used to using one bag and therefore be able to predict how it will move and when you should strike.
If you don’t have access to multiple punch bags, it’s still important to keep training as using one bag is better than no bags at all.
But really imagine as if that punching bag you’re using is your opponent and think about how your opponent would try to close the distance on you.
Read the complete guide to boxing footwork so you can win whether your opponent is closing the distance on you or vice versa.
If you’re training for strength and fitness: you can use any bag you like… If you’re looking to build muscle, then a heavy bag can require you to hit it harder for it to move, but you can still use the same amount of force when hitting a lighter punch bag. Besides…
Growing muscle can be sped up by lifting weights correctly in the gym.
Now, for general fitness, any type of movement where your heart rate is elevated is a great way to stay fit and healthy. This means you can choose any punch bag you like which will suit your training place.
Note: If you’re planning to get a punching bag for outdoor use, I’d recommend getting a water-filled punching bag or a bag made from textiles.
Because if you buy a sand-filled punching bag and it rains/is very cold, the sand can harden and you may as well be punching a brick wall.
This leads us to the question:
A punching bag can weigh between 15 and 200 pounds.
The heavier types of punch bags are heavy bags (hence the name), and the lightest types of punch bags are double-end bags which can be pumped up with air.
This guide was written to help you find the best punching bag and answer your burning questions about the equipment.
I hope you’ve enjoyed it and have gained a good grip about what you wanted to know. Which is why…
I’d like to turn it over to you:
Did you find the punching bag you were looking for?
What are your thoughts on the punching bag workout – did you try it?
Perhaps you now know that bags can be filled with sand, water, air, or clothing?
Either way, let me know your thoughts in the comments below and…
Click here to follow us on Instagram so that you can experience more great tips and tricks about fighting and fitness.
Alistair Knight is an amateur athlete in boxing and the founder of Healthy Principles. He spends most of his time practising and learning more about boxing to ensure you get the best experience-based and evidence-based insights to learn. Learn more about Alistair Knight