How High Should a Punching Bag Be?

Last Updated: 15.09.19

 

If you’re training to become a successful fighter or just to get in shape, you’ll find the following article to be helpful, so check it out before you start. The height of a punching bag depends on the training equipment you are using, your fighting style, experience, and training purpose. The correct set up will accelerate your progress and keep you away from injuries.

Having the proper set up for your training equipment could be hard to manage even for experienced athletes. Choosing the right height for your punching bag allows you to work out more effective and to become more skilled in a shorter period of time.

 

Finding the best height

Usually, a punching bag has what athletes and coaches are calling a “sweet spot”. It represents the ideal place for your kicks and punches to land. Hitting that small area is similar to hitting a real-life opponent during a fight.

If you manage to strike the sweet spot during the punching drills, you will knock back the bag. The movement of the bag should remind you of a fighter hit with a very effective punch. Adjusting the punching bag’s height will have a greater impact on your training than you might think. 

What happens if you don’t hit the sweet spot

If you hit the bag above the sweet spot, the bag will spin around without moving backward. Furthermore, the superior part of the punching bag might be almost empty. This happens because the punching bag filler settles to the lower part over time.

If you hit the bag below the sweet spot, you will get a greater resistance. After a period of time, this training method may result in injuries in your wrists and knuckles. It could be a great way to condition parts of your body but as a rookie, it might not be the best way to go.

Of course, it will take some time before being able to hit your target constantly. But some of the bag producers might help you achieve this goal. Most of the punching bags manufacturers use a label or a different color paint to mark the exact location of the sweet spot.  By learning how to hit with proper technique on this exact area, you can master the knockout punches.

Some of the professional boxers place the bag in order for the sweet spot to be around the mid-torso level. They train to hit at this level because a liver shot usually ends the fight.

 

A different style means a different height

For example, if your fighting styles include both kicks and punches, you will need a bigger and lower punching bag. This will help you improve your leg sweeps and kicks while being able to throw head-level punches and elbows.

Things are different for boxers, which only train their punches. For their training, the bag could be at a higher level since they only punch above the waist when fighting in a match. A higher set-up punching bag will also put the accent on fighting against bigger opponents.

 

The head-height method

The head-height method is used in order to determine the correct height for a heavy punching bag. When doing this, line up the top of your head with the top of the bag. The head-height approach allows you to train different techniques on a target as tall as you. 

The goal of this method is to get familiar with landing strikes at the superior level. It makes sense to practice this way since most of the fighting sports do not require to wear headgear.

 

Take note of the bag filler

The bag filler is the material that fills the inside of the punching bag. It could be sand, foam, water, rags or even rice. Usually, the bag filler is a combination of two or more materials. Most of the manufacturers use more than one type of bag filler in order to create a natural feeling when hitting the bag.

Foam, air, or water as bag fillers

Using foam as a bag filler has the advantage that the punching bag has the same firmness everywhere. Therefore, a bag with the same hardness all over its surface might be a good fit for a style such as Taekwondo or Muay Thai. These styles include kicks at a low and high level. While training your leg kicks you will get the same feeling no matter where you hit.

There might be the necessity of anchoring down a light punching bag. It will move around a lot when you will be practicing powerful punches. This is the case for punching bags filled with foam or air. Another interesting option is to use water as a bag filler. By using water as a bag filler you will get a heavier bag together with constant firmness.

If you are using a punching bag filled with sand or rice, keep in mind the hardness of the bag. In case you just started to train you might want to hit the softer part of the bag. In order to do so, you should place the punching bag at a lower height.

 

How to set up a speed bag 

Speed bags are punching bags used to improve hand-eye coordination and weight shifting between punches. Usually, a speed bag is filled with air.

Until you get people to envy your speed bag skills while training at the local gym, you must fix it at a proper height. If the speed bag is either too high or too low it will make your training feel tiresome and unnatural.

 

Place yourself in front of the bag

Although the shape can vary slightly depending on the producer, the speed bags usually have a tear-drop shape. When you are making adjustments to the bag’s platform, pay attention to the “belly” ( the thickest part of the bag). It should be on your nose and mouth level. Having placed the bag at this level will increase the effectiveness of your strikes.

Some of the speed bags available on the market have an adjustable platform. Without needing any wrench, you can make the bag’s platform to go higher or lower. This is a great choice for a boxing gym.

 

How to adjust the height on a double end bag

Double-end punching bags are used to train hand-eye coordination, fighting distance, and rhythm. It is a useful training tool since it trains both offense and defense by promoting short reaction times. 

The middle of the bag should be around your chest level. By setting the bag this way, it will be easier for you to train your jabs and to speed up blocking reflexes. If the bag is set up too high, it could hit you in the face when bouncing back. Also, don’t fix the bag too low as it may hit your stomach during training.

Most of the time, a double-end punching bag is set up vertically. However, if you decide to go old school, you can place it horizontally. The punching bag should be as high as your chest level. Otherwise, it will move around diagonally adding chaos to your workout.

How to set up a wall bag

Wall bags are not as common as heavy bags or speed bags. In general, they are used in order to train uppercuts and hooks. You need to be really careful when installing a wall bag because it is hard to readjust. 

Keep in mind the size of your regular sparring partners. If they are as big as you, the largest part of the bag should be as high as your head in order to develop good muscle memory.  

 

How to set up a large maize bag

The large maize bag is not one of the common or popular punching bags. It is primarily used to improve hooks, uppercut punches, and head movement. To optimize your training, the base of the bag should be on your chin level.

 

Free-standing punching bags

These kinds of bags are a great choice for someone who trains at home or doesn’t have a lot of workout space. The height of the bag can be easily adjusted, without using any tool. Some of them stand between 47 and 68 inches so they could easily fulfill your needs.

The plastic base can be filled with water or sand. If you are going to train while having the bag at its maximum height, you need a heavier base. Otherwise, your bag will move around too easily or will fall over. 

 

 

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