Yesterday morning I was sitting in my gym, waiting for my client to have boxing practice, and started wondering what to fill our punching bags with to make it ideal for most people.
A very common question associated with punching bags is what to fill the punching bags with to make the training experience with them as user-friendly as possible. Fillers for punching bags can be very different, from waste textiles, leather, corn, special foam rollers, to sand, sawdust, and the like. I’ve done some research, also incorporated our experience, and let’s look at what the pros and cons of each filler are separately and for which boxing bags a particular filler is appropriate.
What to fill boxing bags with and why is filler important?
The filler, just like the punching bag itself, is crucial in the question of what kind of user experience the user will have when using that boxing bag. A good punching bag filler can make a good punching bag great, while on the other hand, a bad filler can make a good and quality punching bag also useless.
According to the experience of our fighters and also fighters around the world, the filling for a punching bag must be such that it holds the shape of the boxing bag as nicely as possible, or oval along the entire length or the height of the bag.
It is also very important that the filling weighs the boxing bag appropriately so that it is heavy enough and does not move too much during use. According to experience, this weight should be around 40 kilograms for classic 120-centimeter punching bags, and around 60 kilograms and more for larger 170-centimeter bags. The question also arises as to where the weight is concentrated and how it affects the oscillation of the punching bag. We will not delve into this in this article, but our experience is that it is much better if the weight is concentrated in the middle or. the core of the bag, because of this, it will oscillate less.
Another very important, probably even the most important function of the filler is to maintain the softness of the punching bag. Some fillers easily get a tick on the above requirements but burn completely on this requirement.
The experience with very hard punching bags is very poor for the vast majority of regular boxing bag users. Such a filler or. hard boxing bags are, at least such is the user experience, can be the reason for many injuries or joint pains, from the knuckles, wrists, elbows, to the shoulders. In the worst cases, hard fillers also caused fractures of small palmar bones, permanent pain in joints and knuckles.
The filling must be such as to keep the punching bag relatively soft, so it must not be compacted too much, at least not in the area of the bag where hand punches are used (height from the waist to the top of the punching bag).
A good filling for a punching bag, therefore, keeps the punching bag of a beautiful shape, keeps the surface of the bag relatively soft, and, on top of that, gives the bag the appropriate weight so that it does not fluctuate too much.
Sand or corn can be a very good form of filler for uppercut boxing bags and similar smaller punching bags. Due to the smaller volume of the bag, the sand and corn also do not compact as much. However, it is also true that this form of punching bag is not used by fighters in training as often as classic boxing bags.
What is the difference between fillers for punching bags and why is one filler good for one type of bag and not for another?
Fillers for punching bags differ primarily in the material. The material, however, affects what the characteristics of an individual punching bag will be. It is known that different punching bags have different uses. With this, however, they also need different fillers. And a boxing bag filler, which may be good, or even great for one type of punching bag, is out of the question for another type of bag.
In the case of pear-shaped punching bags, or Boxing bags, which are usually designed primarily for training uppercuts, can be corn, dry and nice sawdust, or even sand, a great filler for this type of bag. While in experience, these fillers are out of the question in classic punching bags. Mainly because bags with such a filler are simply too heavy and too hard.
Do boxing bag fillers need to be replaced over time?
When we talk about classic punching bags, we can say that a good filling does not need to be changed because they retain their shape, are reasonably heavy, and do not compact too much, or some don’t compact at all.
It is slightly different with fillers that are not optimal, such as scraps of fabric, leather scraps… These fillers shrink over time, especially leather scraps. And after a while, it is very good if the bag is emptied, the filler is slightly shifted, shaken and the bag refilled, as this puts some more air in the bag again, allowing the bag to be softer and more user-friendly.
As already mentioned, the other fillers listed at the beginning of the article according to our experience and after what we found online are not suitable for classic punching bags.
In the case of specific punching bags, which are usually much smaller in volume and more or less intended for training uppercuts, one of the better fillers is corn in the grain. Given that corn is cereal and is unprocessed, that is, edible for humans and animals, care must be taken because moths and other insects can grow in it very quickly. When filling such punching bags with corn, it is a good idea to close the punching bag with a zipper so that moths are harder to line up in it.
Another good option is if there is another additional bag inside the bag itself, which also closes practically airtight. However, in my experience, it is good if before you close the bag in it or. drop some insect repellent into the corn. Regardless of everything, it makes sense to change the contents of such a bag every now and then, if for no other reason than because corn grains become cornflour when used for a long time.
Advantages and disadvantages of different fillers for punching bags
It will probably be best if we pay attention to each filler separately and give individual descriptions and characteristics.
This boxing bag filler is relatively very good for classic punching bags. In my experience, it’s great to add some softer, more airy parts to the filling, such as foam, or some form of felt that has a large volume. This helps to ensure that the filler does not shrink too much and too quickly. The problem with this form of filler is that the punching bags need to be refilled soon after we fill them up and start using them, as the contents settle down somewhat quickly, especially at the beginning. The good side of this filler is that it is relatively easy to get, it is cheap, if you are lucky, it can also be free. The filler also has a long service life.
This filler has been very popular in the past. Almost all the punching bags were filled with it, or at least partially filled. The downside of this filler is certainly that after a certain amount of time it compacts so hard that training with such a punching bag can be dangerous to the health of the user. In recent years, another disadvantage of this filler is that it is practically impossible to get it in Europe. However, if you get it, you have to pay well for it in most cases. One of the positives of leather as a filler, however, is that leather gives boxing bags a lot of weight, and bags filled with leather are very static (a matter of debate whether this is good or not).
As I mentioned in previous paragraphs, sand is unsuitable for this type of punching bag. It’s true that it gives a punching bag a nice shape and a lot of weight (I doubt any of the punching bags would withstand that weight), but the bag filled with sand is so hard that it would matter if you boxed into a masonry wall and not into the bag. And even cheaper would come to you.
Similar to sand, it is also for sawing. According to experience, bags filled with it are too hard, and like corn, insects can quickly grow in it. When sawing, there is also a problem with larger remnants of wood or sharp “chips”, which can injure a hand or leg when hitting a bag. if the sawing is very small or more similar to powder, but often from these bags also “smokes”, or. practice escapes from them.
This filler is much better in experience than all the fillers we talked about above. Looking at the criteria that characterize a good filler, foam rollers get hooks at just about all levels. Foam rollers are made to fit perfectly in a punching bag and give it a virtually flawless shape. These rollers do not settle and the service life of such a punching bag depends mainly on the quality of the outer lining of the bag or. its durability. Also in terms of weight, the rollers are made so that we have a cut-out hole in the middle, in which any weight can be placed. Due to its position and concentrated weight, a bag with this form of filling is very stable and fluctuates less than bags with the same weight and filling made of textile trimmings. The only downside to this form of filler, however, is that it is much more expensive than other fillers (if that is a downside) and that many settle for a few cheaper and worse trade-offs.
I hope you got the answer to the question of what to fill a punching bag from the record. I believe that the shape of the filling is something else and I will be very happy if you write your experience in the comment below the article, blue also add the shape of the filling that you like, or we add your experience with any of the fillers described above.
Boxing bags are the oldest form of boxing training and martial arts. This form of training is centuries old. And even today, punching bags offer us the most realistic form punches and kicks. On the SUD-boxing website, you can find a wide variety of punching bags for virtually all types of martial arts and training styles. Everything from the biggest Fat Berta, who is a giant among punching bags, specially tailored punching bags, for boxers, Thai boxing and karate bags, speed balls, doubleend balls, wall bags, uppercut bags and more and more. Most punching bags are made in EU.