As a Boxer, Kickboxer, Muay Thai fighter, or well rounded martial artist, one of the most frequent purchases you will make throughout your martial arts journey is buying a set of boxing gloves. Boxing gloves have one basic function: to protect your hands as best as possible. Like most of the products we buy, all good things eventually come to an end, and boxing gloves are no different.
Because we train on a regular basis with frequency, boxing gloves tend to slowly begin to wear out. Every training session, we spend time on the heavy bag or on the punching mitts throwing strikes with an uneven amount of power. Some days, we feel like unleashing our rage on the bags, but other days, the fatigue can kick in at any moment and you’re all of a sudden hitting the mitts with low energy.
Since we almost never hit the heavy bag or punching mitts with the same amount of force and pressure, we’ll really never know exactly when boxing gloves will give out. Normally, we see fighters replace their boxing gloves in 2-3 years, but this really depends on the boxing glove itself. Throughout our experience as life long martial artists, we’ve had our fair share of low quality boxing gloves and high end boxing gloves, so we can definitely guide you with things to consider in order for you to maximize the lifetime of your new pair of boxing gloves.
The internet is over saturated with a selection of boxing gloves. Finding a dependable pair of boxing gloves can almost feel like playing russian roulette - it can be a total guessing game. There are times when you pull the trigger on buying a set of gloves, and when they arrive in the mail and you slip them on for the first time, they can feel like the gloves we’re specifically made for you.
But many times (speaking from personal experience), they’ll arrive in the mail and you realize the gloves you ordered we’re totally not what you expected. The padding within the gloves can be too rough and the wrist support can be really loose, which can potentially cause you injuries in the long run.
While it’s difficult for you to know if a set of gloves will be the right fit for you, you can definitely get an idea by looking at the boxing gloves’ product details. Many times, retailers will let you know what kind of materials were used for the padding, exterior, straps, laces, and more. Let’s talk a little bit about key things to consider if the longevity of your boxing gloves really matters to you.
One of the first main indicators of a boxing glove that will not last you a long time is the type of padding used. Really cheap gloves can sometimes be found to have air padding within the boxing gloves and the gloves definitely won’t last you very long. But some of the main padding types you will encounter include:
Chances are, if you’re buying boxing gloves from a big-box retailer, you will find their selection of boxing gloves to have basic foam padding, and this type of foam padding will not hold up very well. On the contrary, brands like Everlast produce high end boxing gloves with better quality foam padding, which makes hitting the heavy bag a better experience. Take for example the Everlast Elite Hook and Loop training gloves - these black Everlast boxing gloves are padded with better quality foam and can last you up to two years with minimal issues with regular (non-intensive) use.
When you’re shopping for your next set of boxing gloves, take the padding material into consideration, your hands and wallet will thank you later!
Boxing gloves come in many shapes, but they all follow a standard sizing convention. Boxing gloves are sized by their weight in ounces (oz). They can be found in 4oz, 6oz, 8oz, 10oz, 12oz, 14oz, 16oz, and 18oz (we’re sure some manufacturer has built something heavier than 20oz, but that’s a little excessive).
When you are considering the weight of the glove in terms of durability, remember that with less weight comes less padding. Over time, as you train with a certain intensity, your padding may eventually wear out. Normally, you will find people regularly training with 14 oz and 16 oz boxing gloves.
The quality of the exterior of your glove, as well as the quality of the boxing gloves’ velcro strap or laces can affect the overall longevity of a boxing glove. Cheap synthetic leather boxing gloves have often been found to begin tearing around 6-8 months of regular training, whereas boxing gloves made with high quality synthetic materials or genuine leather can last up to 2-3 years with regular use. Again, many factors can determine how long boxing gloves will last, but these are average estimates.
A good boxing glove will ultimately be a pair of boxing gloves that you’re completely happy with. But in terms of longevity, a good boxing glove will feel really comfortable, even when you’re punching with full force. Good boxing gloves will surpass the one year mark of training from their time of purchase (as long as you bought them brand new… can’t say the same about resale boxing gloves).
A good example of a good boxing glove is the Cleto Reyes Extra Padding Boxing Gloves. These red Cleto Reyes gloves are an absolute joy to use at the gym. Hitting the heavy bag feels like butter and the hand made boxing gloves makes you feel like you’re training with a pair of luxury boxing gloves.
No one wants to train with a bad boxing glove, but sometimes it’s inevitable that we’re going to run into a pair in our lifetime. You’ll know you have a bad set of boxing gloves when:
If you encounter any of these issues with your current set of boxing gloves, you may want to reconsider purchasing another pair.
Below are a couple of our favorite brands who have established a positive reputation among combat sports enthusiasts:
Buying good boxing gloves online can be a challenge in itself if you don’t consider the information above. While we were able to provide you with ample recommendations, at the end of the day, we want you to find the pair of boxing gloves that suit your needs.
Have a pair of boxing gloves you absolutely love and want to rave about? Let us know in the comments below!