What are The Best Punching Bags For Martial Arts?

Discover my favorite selection of the best punching bags for home and the dojo

Best Punching Bags Best Punching Bags

So you're looking to buy a punching bag, but you're tired of reading false reviews from general websites that know nothing about martial arts? I was too, that why I wrote this punching bag buying guide for you. You will find here bags that I have personally tested.

I started my quest to find the best punching bag when it was time to change the one that I had at home. Because many of my friends are Karate practitioners and martial art school owners, I had the chance not only to try various models but also to have their honest opinion on their bags. So here is my review of the best punching bags for martial arts.

I wrote this article called 5 Ways Punching Bag Training will Massively Boost your Karate Striking Power, please have a look, I'm sure you'll find it interesting.


Ringside Power Puncher Heavy Bag

Best Hanging Punching Bag
The Ringside Power Puncher punching bag as the best of the best for martial artists.

The Ringside Power Puncher is an excellent, durable punching bag. We've been using it for years at the dojo, and it received a hell of a beating, and it's still going strong. The bag provides a wide punching or kicking surface, and it feels "consistent" from top to bottom.

The reason why I love this bag is that it's not only suitable for Karate (punching and kicking) but for any martial art or should I say various kind of practice (heavy striking, lighter workout, cardio, etc.). If your hands are not properly trained, you will need gloves as it's very hard on the knuckles.

When you receive it, the Ringside Power Puncher weighs 140 lbs (filled with densely packed cloth), but if you want to add more weight to it's totally possible. What is nice is that the bag contains an internal, plastic cylinder in the center that can easily be filled by unzipping the top of the bag and filling it with sand so it can go up to 200 lbs.

The shell is made of leather-like, durable synthetic material and has reinforced stitching, so you do not have to worry about tearing it apart. If you want to, it's possible to customize the hardness of the bag by using sand, gravel, wood pellets, cloths, etc. What I also like about this bag is that it falls somewhere between a water bag and a sand bag, it's a good compromise between the two.

The bag ships with the chains and swivel, so there is no need to purchase those separately. If you can't hang the bag, you can consider buying a stand for it.

If you're serious about training, this bag is for you.

  • Suitable for any martial art,
  • Soft filling provides a perfect hitting surface,
  • Easily add more filling, up to 200 lbs,
  • Durable leather-like synthetic material,
  • Comes with chain and swivel.

Name: Ringside Power Puncher Heavy Bag
Type: Hanging Punching Bag
Weight: 140 lbs (up to 200 lbs)
Dimension: 16" x 48"
Color(s): black and red

For more details check the Ringside Power Puncher Heavy Bag on Amazon.


Ringside 100 lbs Muay Thai Punching Bag

Best Long Punching Bag
You can't go wrong with this Ringside "Banana Bag".

Are you're looking for a punching bag that is not only suitable for any martial arts but designed for low-kicks, then, I highly recommend you to check out the Ringside Muay Thai Heavy Bag. A friend of mine (and training partner) has it in his basement, and I immediately fell in love with it after only a few kicks.

The Ringside Muay Thai Punching Bag is an amazing 72 inches banana punching bag (much longer than traditional heavy bags) designed primarily for practicing low-kicks. Of course, you can also punch, elbow and knee on it. That's the kind of bag that you can see in MMA gyms. The bag is relatively heavy, it weighs 100 lbs, and it doesn't swing too much around when you punch or kick on it; therefore, it can be used in a relatively narrow space. Don't worry about the bag hitting the walls or any other objects around it. The bag has a zipper on top so you can add filling if needed.

The shell is made from high-quality material that provides an almost genuine leather experience and that absorb striking impacts nicely. It feels comfortable to use. My friend that has this bag told me that it holds its shape well even after intense usage. I can attest to that because when I saw the bag, I thought it was new, but he's been using it on an almost daily basis for close to a year.

The Ringside Muay Thai Heavy Bag is an excellent long bag for personal home usage, professional fighters or martial arts schools.

  • Ideal to practice low-kicks,
  • Made of leather-like durable material,
  • Comfortable hitting surface,
  • Can handle non-stop pounding,
  • Great purchase for the price.

Name: Ringside 100 lbs Muay Thai Punching Bag
Type: Long Punching Bag
Weight: 105 lbs
Dimension: 13" x 72"
Color(s): black

For more details check the Ringside 100 lbs Muay Thai Punching Bag on Amazon.


Ringside Elite Freestanding Punching Bag

Best Free-Standing Punching Bag
The Ringside Elite Free-Standing Bag is great bag for martial artists.

I own the Wavemaster XXL , and for a long time I thought it was the best free standing punching bag out there, but when I discovered the Ringside Elite Free-Standing Bag, I quickly changed my mind.

The Ringside Elite Free-Standing Bag is probably the favorite bag of Karate practitioners and martial artists; it certainly is mine. I saw it in dozens of dojos. What is great about this punching bag is that it doesn't need any setup, you only need to fill the base with gravel, sand or wood pellets as I did, and it's ready to take a beating. What's great about free standing bags is that once your finished training, you can move the bag to the back of the dojo or in the corner of the room.

Rest assured, the Elite standing bag can take massive kicks and punches without falling over and provides excellent resistance, thanks to its spring-loaded base. It can stand against even the strongest Karate, Muay Thai or MMA punches, kicks and knees! Unlike other free-standing bags, this monster can take a hit without falling over. You can give it all you want, it will stand up nicely! Not only it won't fall, but the base won't move around either.

The shock-absorbing foam is encased in a durable, high-quality synthetic leather, and is designed to withstand intense blows during training. The material is durable and won't peel off because of usage. It's the only free-standing bag was designed for professional training.

This baby is 6' 4", and can weigh up to 270 pounds! Yes, you read that right! It has a massive base that can hold up to 270 lbs of sand, gravel or like I said, wood pellets. I don't put water anymore into free-standing punching bags because years ago, I had a bad experience with the old Century Powerline bag. The Ringside Elite's base seems way more resistant, but still, no water for me.

I'm not gonna lie, the Ringside Elite Free-Standing Bag is pricey, but you're paying for a high-quality product that will last long, not for some cheap low-quality, easily breakable standing bag. You won't be disappointed.

I'm totally in love with this bag, I have one at home, and I honestly recommend it.

PS: It's worth noting that the Ringside Elite punching bag comes with a 120-day purchase return policy in case you're not satisfied with it, but that won't happen, trust me!

  • Giant size and heavyweight,
  • Super stable, doesn't fall over nor move around,
  • Durable and resistant material,
  • Can hit full force.

Name: Ringside Elite Freestanding Punching Bag
Type: Free-standing Punching Bag
Weight: 100 lbs (can be filled up to 270 lbs)
Dimension: 64 x 30 x 16 inches
Color(s): black and red

For more details check the Ringside Elite Free-standing Punching Bag on Amazon.


Lil' Dragon Wavemaster Punching Bag

Best Kid Punching Bag
Your kids will love the Lil' Dragon Wavemaster Punching Bag.

I've bought this kids punching bag for my son's birthday (he's yellow belt in Karate) and I must say that he really loves it! This bag was designed with young martial artists in mind.

It has a nice kid-friendly purple color and a cute Lil' Dragon Wavemaster logo on one side, and colored numbers and shapes on the other side for target practice.

Because this is a free-standing bag, once out of the box, it was ready to use in no time. I filled it with wood pellets as it's a great alternative to water. The manufacturer of the Lil' Dragon Wavemaster says the bag weighs 170 lbs when filled with water. I would say that it weighs around 130-135 lbs filled with wood pellets. When I first saw it at a friends house, the base looks like it sticks out a lot, but my son (7 yo) and my daughter (4yo) can punch and kick on it without any trouble.

The shell is made of tough nylon with sturdy stitching, and the inner part is composed of a thick high-impact foam that can take a beating. I tested it myself! By the way, it features four height adjustments from 37 to 52 inches.

This free-standing kid punching bag is an excellent buy; your little karate kids will love it! I clearly recommend it.

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you, there is a one-year warranty on all Wavemaster training bags.

  • Excellent quality,
  • Resistant material, sturdy stitchings,
  • Easily adjustable height,
  • Very stable, won't fall over when kids hit on it,
  • Nice attractive colors for kids,
  • Children love practicing on it.

Name: Lil' Dragon Wavemaster
Type: Kid Punching Bag
Weight: 125 lbs -170 lbs
Dimension: 37" to 52" (height), Base: 22" Diameter x 12" Tall, Bag: 10.5" Diameter x 26" Tall
Color(s): purple

For more details check the Lil' Dragon Wavemaster Training Bag on Amazon.


Each type of punching bags have different training purposes, therefore, it is important to understand each type and to know what they are good for. Each punching bag has its own size, weight, shape, and has a different purpose.

So, before taking money out of your pocket to buy a punching bag, read this article carefully, you'll be able to buy the best punching bag for your needs. If your hands are not well-conditionned, don't forget to protect your hand when using a punching bag. I use these gloves , and I highly recommend them.

Hanging Punching Bags

Hanging Punching Bag
Hanging punching bags are excellent all purpose bags.

The Hanging bag is one of the most common punching bags found in martial art schools. It is a large enough bag that allows practicing your punches and kicks, elbows and knees on it. Depending on the filling of the bag, it can range from comfortably soft to very hard. Suspended bags are generally heavier than other types of bags and allow to develop striking power and endurance.

Ideal for: general workout
Recommended for: Muay Thai, Kickboxing, Boxing, MMA

Jump to the best hanging punching bag section.

Long Punching Bags

Long Punching Bag
Long punching bags, aka "banana bags' are excellent yo your your low-kicks.

The long heavy bag, aka the "banana punching bag" or "Muay Thai Bag" is specifically designed for people who want to work on their low kicks, in addition to their other strikes. These bags are around 72 inches in height (6 ft) and are designed to be the full length of a person. Long heavy bags do not swing as much as other bags and tend to be more solid towards the bottom of the bag as the material starts to compact towards the bottom over time.

Ideal for: practicing low kicks and clinch
Recommended for: Muay Thai, MMA

Jump to the best long (banana) punching bag section.

Free Standing Punching Bags

Free-standing Punching Bag
Free-standing bags are a great alternative to hanging punching bags.

Free-standing punching bags come with a base that can be filled with sand, gravel, water or wood pellets. They're a great alternative to traditional hanging punching bags as they require no mounting whatsoever. Free-standing punching bags are a great solution for martial art schools, home training, and outdoor usage (if well protected from the rain).

Ideal for: great alternative if you don't want to or can't install a hanging bag
Recommended for: Karate, Kickboxing

Jump to the best free standing punching bag section.

Kids Punching Bags

Kid Punching Bag
Kid punching bags are a great buy for youn martial artists.

Whether your kid is practicing a martial art or not, he or she will have lots of fun playing with a kids punching bag. If they are into martial arts, a punching bag is a great and fun way to encourage them to practice their skills at home. If applied properly, their technique will definitely improve faster. Your child is not into martial arts? No problem, these bags will make them move and burn some calories! That's better than playing video games isin't? Don't make the mistake of offering your kid a punching bag so that he can unleash his emotions on it. Kids should learn how to manage their emotions, not mindlessly unleash them on a bag.

Ideal for: various strikes and all-out fun!
Recommended for: kids that practicing martial arts and kids that don't!

Jump to the best kids punching bag section.

Summary Table
Hanging Bag General Workout Muay Thai, Kickboxing, Boxing, MMA
Long Bag Practicing low kicks and clinch Muay Thai, MMA
Freestanding Bag Alternative to hanging bags Karate, Kickboxing
Kid's Bag Various strikes and all-out fun! Kids that are practicing matial arts and kids that don't!


Can I hang a punching bag in the basement?

Yes, and it's actually a great place to put your bag. Make sure to fix it to a strong support beam that must be able to not only support the weight of the punching bag, but also the impact as it swings.

Can I hang a punching bag on the ceiling?

If you have a finished ceiling, I'm not sure that would be a great idea, but it's totally possible to hang your heavy bag from a ceiling joist or beam located behind whatever your ceiling might be made of.

Can I keep a punching bag outside?

Most punching bags are not made to be kept outside, but it's possible to do so if you cover your bag with a tarp to protect it from the rain when you're not using it. One thing is sure; it has to stay dry.

Can I use MMA gloves on a punching bag?

Yes, you can if your hands are well-conditioned, but to minimize injuries, I would use gloves explicitly designed for heavy bag training as they usually offer better hand and knuckle protection along with wrist support.

Can I hit a punching bag with just hand wraps?

Once again, you can if your knuckles and wrists are well-conditioned and strong enough. That being said, hitting a heavy bag regularly with only wraps or even barehanded can put a lot of pressure on your articulations, particularly your wrists and elbows. I would advise wearing bag gloves most of the time.

What do I fill a punching bag with?

Every bag in this guide comes filled, so make sure it can be filled with additional material before proceeding. The most common and useful filling for punching bags is old rags and sand. Wood pellets are also a good option. If you only use cloths, your punching bag will be too soft and too light. Some bags have plastic tubes at their core that are just waiting to be filled up.

Where do you hang a punching bag?

The best place to hang a punching bag is in a basement if you have on in your house. Just put a few screws in a solid beam, and voila! If you don't have any place where to hang a bag, you can buy a specially designed stand.

Where to hang a punching bag outside?

The ideal place is to hang your punching bag on the sturdiest branch of a tree. You can also buy a special stand designed four punching bags or a wall mount that you can fix on concrete wall or wood surfaces.

How expensive are punching bags?

If you're looking for a good-quality, durable bag, you should expect to pay between $400 and $600. You can always buy cheap ones, but you'll rip through them quickly. I know, I did a few times.

How heavy should a punching bag be?

It depends on what kind of bag you're looking forward to buying. If you're looking for a traditional punching bag, the minimum weight is, in my opinion, 150 lbs. If you're looking for a banana bag or a long low-kick bag, you can start at 75 lbs or so.

What punching bag size should I get?

The general rule for sizing a heavy adult bag is that the minimum weight should be approximately a little more than half your body weight. For example, if your weighing 180 lbs, your punching bag should weigh 100 lbs minimum. That being said, I like my bag to weigh at least 150-170 lbs, as it works better on deep muscles when kicking.

Can I kick a punching bag?

We call them "punching bags", but you can definitely kick on it! You can practice all sorts of kicks with a punching bag like the front kick, roundhouse kick, and sidekick. You can even work on your knee strikes.


I'm positive that if you buy any of the bags suggested in this guide, you'll be more than happy about your choice.

There are so many different types of punching bags and companies that make them, that it can be quite perplexing to choose well. A good punching bag is expensive, so you wanna make sure in advance that you make the best decision before buying.

Which punching bag do you plan on buying?

Thank you for reading!
Hey, it's Martin, I hope you liked this article! I will share on this website information related to Karate, Martial Arts, Self-Defense, Health, Spirituality and more! Please read my bio, and follow me on Facebook and Instagram.

Hi, my name is Martin Jutras. I've been studying and practicing Karate, practical self-defense and Zen Buddhism for more than 35 years.

Let's discover and explore together the benefits and richness of Karate's Lifestyle - Martial Arts, Self-Defense, Health, Spirituality and More!

Want to know more about me? Read my bio

Got questions? Contact me!

Subscribe to my newsletter

Enter your email to receive news and updates straight in your mailbox.