Workouts and sports help us both physically mentally. But you must equip yourself with proper instruments to avoid the risk of getting injured. The purpose of sparring hand gloves is not to enable you to smack your opponent down. Rather, it serves to protect both your hands and your opponent!
I know it sounds a little disappointing or less adventurous! But sports, however thrilling they are, are meant to promote physical and mental wellbeing, passion, and compassion towards everyone involved in the game. Besides, you surely don’t wanna hurt yourself, right?
The decision on the best gloves for sparring is up to you. What I’m gonna do here is to take you on tour to the world of gloves for sparring so that whatever your choice is, you get to make the best one!
Gloves for Sparring | What and Why
The history of boxing gloves goes back the 2000 BC in Ancient Middle-East. It was merely a band supporting their wrists back then. Since then, humans have evolved, and so the products. And it proves that we humans have always been sporty!
Boxers and workout enthusiasts wear gloves padded with foam and covered with synthetic leather or vinyl. It’s because whenever you hit something, be it a punching bag or your girl’s ex’s face, you expose your own hands and wrists to immense power and pressure.
We all memorized the mighty third law of motion! Every action has an equal and opposite reaction! So your knuckles and wrists have to face the same force that you put on the surface you hit. If there isn’t a sufficient amount of protection, naturally, you’ll get injured!
Also, the weight of the gloves helps you enhance endurance and speed. You keep practicing in greater force with gloves on and that in turn helps you hit faster wearing a lighter or no gloves at all. Sturdy, isn’t it?
If you’re dying to know the best gloves for sparring, you’ll have to wait a bit more! Coz I’m gonna tell you about the different types of hand gloves out there first. Let’s go!
These are worn during punching bag workouts. Not suited for professional boxing, these items are often called training gloves. These products come with minimum protection and lighter weight. A little amount of foam is used to pad it, and the cover isn’t much durable.
You’ll find these gloves in nearby sports retail stores because they don’t require many specializations. Bag gloves are used for versatile purposes, but the protection issue must be kept in mind.
With thicker as well as softer foam pads and synthetic leather covers, these gloves are also called professional gloves. The weight of a sparring glove pair depends on what level of boxing you’re in and the ratio of your height and weight.
Experts suggest using a least 14 oz while comparing it to your body measurement. However, if you weigh less or more, the glove’s size and weight should vary accordingly. It’s wise to take suggestions from your mentor or coach as they know better than others.
These are similar but different from sparring and bag gloves. The formation is designed to make the impact of each punch sharper and powerful. Your hands will have compact space and there’ll be less padding. A pair of these weighs less (around 8 oz) to serve the same purpose.
As you can understand, they’re not built to wear for a long time. If you’re a professional boxer and a hard hitter, wear it, use it and just get rid of it!
Muay Thai Gloves
It’s a special kind of gloves for kickboxing. The pad is spread wider on the backside of the hands, and you’ll get much more space to move your hands inside it. This helps a better grip and smoother movement.
These gloves are famous in the Thai region among kickboxers. Others also like them for general boxing. However, the special structure makes many players uncomfortable, and therefore, they simply avoid it!
There are other less-used types of gloves, such as the MMA. Mixed Martial Arts gloves are open on the side of the palm and are fingerless. It helps easier grip. However, a boxer must never get in the ring wearing them!
Taekwondo or Karate gloves are made with little foam considering the action of the sport and offer less to zero protection from hard hit.
The Most widely Recognized Sparring Gloves Brands
I hope you’ve had a decent idea of what sparring gloves are and where to use them. I’ll now tell you about some of the brands that are ruling the market and have been receiving positive consumer reviews for a pretty long time.
1. Everlast Pro Style Training Gloves
These training gloves are really handy with 12 and 14 ounces weight sizes. Their patented famous thumb-lock system offers extra protection to both the boxer and the opponent. You can optimize the knuckle’s force without injuries.
Its professional structure and premium quality synthetic leather make it highly durable. Also, it’s got a curved anatomical fit and grip that helps the hand relax after heavy workouts and mitt work. The glove’s got a wrap-around hook and loop strap closure for a better fit, which is also called Velcro.
Imagine punching your opponent and watching him faint due to sweat odor instead of a hard hit! Awkward…
These gloves, just like other great gloves brands, are equipped with a full mesh palm that allows your hands to breathe and expand to prevent offensive odor. Besides, it’s got an “ever-fresh” treatment that helps the gloves smell fresh. Aha!
Everlast, being a world-renowned brand for sports and workout equipment, knows very well what customers want. Their consistent innovation includes anti-microbial treatment to fight uncomfortable odors along with bacterial growth.
They fit around your hands properly and thus save your wrists from getting hurt. The good side of Velcro is that you can put and pull them without someone’s help and the wrap itself offers some extent of protection. However, the same wrap can scratch an opponent’s face which is really bad!
Often people wonder why sparring gloves are expensive. Honestly speaking, sparring gloves prices vary. It depends on the quality, size, brand, and purpose. What you should keep in mind that less expensive gloves can’t endure power and provide protection.
You may not mind spending on new gloves every couple of months but remember that your hands need to get comfortable with the new gloves each time. Isn’t it better to get comfy with your reliable old friend?
2. RDX MMA Gloves
Here come the specialized gloves for kickboxing, Taekwondo, and MMA! As mentioned earlier, it’s built with a special type of padding called Tri-slab PC3. This tri-layered padding helps spread the hit shock around the glove surface and saves the knuckles and wrists.
The Velcro wrap or Dual Quick EZ hook-and-loop closure enables putting and pulling it easily and protects the wrists. The ergonomic design is created based on the feedback of expert boxers around the globe. Therefore, it fits well and keeps well.
If you need to have a grip against bar or rods in your training or games, the D cut curved open palm will serve your purpose perfectly. It allows hands to breathe and keep dry. It additionally helps smoother grip and clinches.
The gloves have got needlework that helps them regain their natural shape even after a hard round of practice or game, be it speedball workout, boxing bag, or the human opponent!
The Maya hide leather cover offers long durability, crack and wear and tear resistance. The outer surface has to survive shock and power time and time again. Therefore, the higher the leather quality, the longer it survives.
People often ask if they can use bag gloves for sparring. Now, it needs an elaborative answer to explain it. Novice boxers often use bag gloves for sparring, but they shouldn’t. Bag gloves consist of a thinner layer of foam pads that may hurt your wrists and knuckles.
Besides, the game is about power and timing. If you miss the right moment to hit, you may miss the whole match! And though we discourage hitting the opponent to the hospital, you must use enough power to the point where your opponent gets knocked down, and you win!
That’s why sparring gloves are the perfect tool for boxing practices as they offer you resistance for yourself and power balance for your opponent.
3. HOHJYA MMA Gloves
Velcro wrists have been famous for years among both boxers and Martial Arts enthusiasts. Hohjya offers a perfectly ergonomic pair of hand gloves for MMA practitioners for the best fit and great endurance. Passionate players who forget time and place during practices would love this piece!
The cover is made of the finest synthetic leather to provide excellent longevity and the big fat padding offers comfy resistance during harsh practices. As Martial Art requires versatile movements and a very high level of control over the body, this glove’s extra widen wrist straps are built highly adjustable.
As I discussed before, MMA gloves are covered half-finger. Therefore, this Hohjya gloves are pretty breathable and help you dry your hands sweat quicker. Besides, your palms don’t heat up and make you lose control consequently.
People are often curious to know if MMA gloves hurt more. It’s true when you’re hitting hard. But as the name goes, you should use it only for Mixed Martial Art practices. And if you’re bound to use them for boxing, please be careful with the force and angles. Else, you might end up in the hospital!
Remember, these are UFC gloves. Therefore, they weight between 4 – 6 ounces and size 7.87”x4.34” (length x width). It’s very important to keep the weight and size balanced with your own body weight and height. New players are suggested to opt for 6 ounces for better balance and impact.
4. CLETO REYES
Now’s the turn for the mighty Mexican sparring gloves! You can use this versatile rockstar for boxing, MMA, Muay Thai, and kickboxing. It’s got a specialized knuckled area so you can grip your fists better without feeling uncomfortable. Besides, its extra-long cuff ensures great adjustability.
Don’t worry if you’re practicing for a long time and get sweaty. The water-resistant nylon lining will keep the sweat in check and won’t let the gloves slip off your hands. That’s surely a relief! These items are prepared with premium quality head leather.
What’s more interesting is that these are handcrafted in Mexico. This country has long been producing its own category of sparring gloves, famously called Mexican Sparring Gloves. The long cuff and adjustable knuckles are their iconic features.
We’ve talked about all the Velcro wraps so far. But this one’s got traditional lace closure. You might need assistance in tying them up, but they’ll stick to your hands like stubborn athletes, and you won’t end up scratching your opponent’s beautiful face!
When you’re giving so much effort in developing punching and boxing skills, why not do it in style? Get in the ring with this badass and knock out any opponent!
So, what are the specialties of Mexican gloves? First, their long cuff; second, the extra pads used to make it compact. It enables better fitting. When choosing a perfect pair of sparring gloves, always try to pick the comfy fitting one so that your hands don’t have extra space to move around.
The third one is their handcrafted, high-quality leather. You keep banging for better practice, and these leathers are born to survive the pressure and hit. The handcraft makes them even better in structure. Here’s a tip, always try on your hands before you buy any gloves.
5. Ringside Gel Shock Safety Boxing Sparring Gloves
Ringside is one of the brands you’ll surely get to hear whenever talking about boxing and MMA equipment. They’re one of the early producers of punching bags, boxing gloves, and many other MMA items in the early 2000s.
Before I dive deep, two issues must be clarified. First, there’s a huge difference between being a fitness freak and being a passionate boxer. The first category people often buy low-budget fitness items for light workouts. Those items usually never sustain and often cause physical harm.
Ringside is known for mid-range fitness products with moderately sustainable solutions. However, the price is always a crucial point. Nowadays, they’re shifting to high-end goods with higher quality that is suitable for heavy workouts and professional practice.
The second important factor is to understand the difference between foam gloves and gel gloves. The second one is filled with a special kind of gel padding to absorb the shock generated from each punch for both the hitter and the opponent.
What are the pros and cons of a gel-padded sparring glove? Gel pads spread the hit shock all over the glove and therefore protect your hands. It helps the opponent in the same way. The punch hits him/her with less force than you created.
So if you’re fighting for real, I mean in a competition where you must knock the opposition down to win, you better not use a gel padded glove. The pros? If it’s not a hard-hitting match or you’re a newbie or you’re concerned about your safety, this is a decent boxing partner. Up to you!
How Do I Know I’m Buying the Best Gloves for Sparring?
Honestly, you can never say it during the purchase! But the later experience will tell you if the decision was right. You can be confident by noticing some small details while buying. Even renowned brands have variations based on the user’s requirements.
I’ll now share some of the common noticeable factors to help you get the best sparring gloves.
Chose Materials Based on Your Skills
Are you at the beginner level? Then opt for the vinyl-covered gloves. They are less durable and less expensive, which means you can use them for light hitting. If you feel the need for an upgrade, the price won’t hurt much. They usually come with a Velcro closure that makes them easier to put on and off.
If you have a decent level of training and skills, buy the leather one. They’re durable and prepared for hard-hitting. Professionals always prefer leather-covered gloves.
Can You Handle the Size and Weight?
Boxing gloves usually weigh from 8oz to 20oz. They’re usually small, medium, and large sizes. Sparring and training gloves are mostly available from 10oz to 20oz and depend on the user’s body weight. Professionals normally use lighter gloves, while newbies are suggested to start with heavier ones.
The standard weight for training and sparring gloves is 16oz. This standard falls down to 10oz for professionals and experts.
Velcro or Lace?
Training, sparring, and bag gloves usually come with Velcro closure which is a modern form of closure technique. These are easier to put on and pull off. However, the con is this can scratch both the user’s wrist and the opponent’s face.
The other closure system is lace tying. It requires assistance from someone to tie them but is guaranteed to remain unmoved due to continuous punching and movement. Also, these laces don’t hurt the user or the opponent.
Take Measures to Keep Your Hands Protected
You’ll require wearing an inner glove or wrap to protect your wrists from the closure and harsh movement during boxing or punching. Besides, they’ve shock-absorbing materials that help your fists get firmer day by day.
Curiosity Is Good!
We’ve learned about different types and brands of sparring gloves. We further looked into the techniques to buy a good pair of gloves. Now, you surely have some questions popping out and around! Let’s delve into some of them.
How Do I Protect My Gloves from Being Smelly?
It’s just not possible that you practice or work out and don’t sweat. Hands will naturally sweat and gloves will naturally get smelly. But we can reduce the amount and frequency of it. Producers create punched holes, breathable mesh, and even sweat-absorbent thumb to ensure airflow in the palm.
Besides buying these, you’ll have to dry out the gloves after each use to let the air take away the sweat and smell. Keeping them in mild sunlight sometimes will both remove the odor and kill bacteria.
Do Heavier Gloves Hurt More?
Interestingly, gloves get heavier because of extra padding, and this extra amount is put in to make them softer and more shock absorbent. This is why beginners are suggested to use 16oz gloves while professionals prefer lighter ones.
What if I Wanna Buy an All-rounder Glove?
Like I mentioned, the size and weight of gloves depend on the usage and expertise as well the user’s body weight level. The most commonly used size is 12oz. Another commonly sued size is 14oz. it weighs more because of the padding and is suitable for sparring.
As you can see, an all-rounder glove isn’t always a wise choice!
Let’s Sum Up
While conducting deep research on gloves, we mustn’t forget that this is a part of an entire workout or sport, which is boxing, punching, or sparring. If you buy a perfect pair of sparring gloves but ignore the importance of a compatible punching bag or other sports material, it all goes in vain.
Selecting the best gloves for sparring among all the various brands in the market is tricky and often depends on the buyer’s efficiency and experience. The purpose of this article was to make that first experience positive.
While you’ve started making the cost-benefit analysis in your head, let’s not forget that boxing or punching is a form of sport. Heavy or light, large or small, don’t burden your body with over-practice and don’t get violent with your opponent either.
Workouts and sports should cause physical and mental wellbeing by generating thrill and calorie burns. Let’s not make our sports or any other equipment a memory of negativity. After all, sportsmanship is all about respect and inspiration!
Last update on 2023-01-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API