The 8 Best Punch Mitts

Updated July 06, 2017 by Sam Kraft

8 Best Punch Mitts
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We spent 38 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top picks for this wiki. Ideal for protecting your boxing, karate or mixed martial arts training partner, these punch mitts are tough enough to withstand regular beatings from accomplished fighters. And while they are designed for fight practice, they also work well as a way to blow off steam and release frustration in the form of a high-powered cardio workout. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best punch mitt on Amazon.

8. Blok-It Focus

The Blok-It Focus allow you to take your training to a new level with a forgiving padded gel center that absorbs strong punches. This helps reduce the chance of injury so you can focus on improving your technique and building your strength.
  • suitable for heavy hitters
  • quick and easy cleaning process
  • poor stitching tends to split
Brand Blok-IT
Model FocusMitts2000
Weight 1.1 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

7. Meister MMA Target

Train with accuracy and power using the Meister MMA Target, which are engineered with contoured hand pockets that offer the user a snug fit and nearly unparalleled glove control. They feature a synthetic leather body that is resilient and flexible.
  • slightly curved to improve accuracy
  • carabiner tie to keep them together
  • not ideal for large hands
Brand Meister MMA
Model pending
Weight 14.9 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. Everlast EverGel

In order to utilize your energy as efficiently as possible and ensure the safety of your hands at the same time, the Everlast EverGel are constructed with an advanced gel and a breathable mesh fabric that keeps your hands dry during extended sessions.
  • strong velcro strap system
  • suitable for fighters of all levels
  • contact area could be bigger
Brand Everlast
Model 4416GL
Weight 1.2 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

5. Title Boxing Platinum

The Title Boxing Platinum are a top choice for trainers, as they come equipped with an anatomically curved design that is ideal for maintaining durability despite countless jabs, hooks, and uppercuts. As an added benefit, they feature special shock-absorbing padding.
  • d-ring attachment secures to wrist
  • rear finger cover for protection
  • wrist padding on front and back
Brand Title Boxing
Model PPM
Weight 1.4 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

4. Pro Impact Curved

The Pro Impact Curved are constructed of premium-quality black leather, with a prominent white target circle in their center for improved accuracy. They feature a sweat-resistant lining, which helps them stay fresh and functional.
  • more padding than most models
  • secure hook and loop closure
  • wide face is easy to hit
Brand Pro Impact
Model pending
Weight 1.8 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

3. RDX Thai Strike

Equipped with a rounded mound for your palm, the RDX Thai Strike place your hands in a natural cupping position that’s ideal for absorbing blows and leads to enhanced comfort. A handy Velcro wrist strap makes them easy to slip on and off.
  • moisture-wicking interiors
  • closures are tight and reliable
  • easy to break in
Brand RDX
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

2. Ringside Heritage

With a lightweight, genuine cowhide leather design, the Ringside Heritage offer trusted protection and quality. They sport an engraved logo and classic lace detailing, which adds an old-school element of style to your training sessions.
  • innovative impact-minimizing foam
  • double hook support straps
  • weigh only 15 ounces
Brand Ringside
Model HPPM
Weight 2.8 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

1. RDX Cowhide

The RDX Cowhide are able to absorb grueling hits, with three thick layers of integrated gel foam padding and state-of-the-art breathable technology. They're well-suited for MMA or kickboxing fighters, but you can certainly use them for general workouts as well.
  • ventilated channels keep hands dry
  • very lightweight for fluidity
  • domed palm pads for a good grip
Brand RDX
Model FPL-T3W
Weight 1.7 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

What Separates a Good Punch Mitt From a Great One?

The key to a great punch mitt is its ability to absorb a shot. This is important for the boxer, but even more so for the trainer, whose palms need to maintain their position even after a flurry of blows.

Most punching mitts feature a leather exterior which is both durable and resilient. Beneath the leather is a reinforced layer of foam padding. Top-of-the-line gloves sometimes combine that foam padding with gel, which cushions the contact while ensuring that the mitt retains its shape. Shape is important in that most mitts bend inward, complementing the curved shape of a boxer's glove. If the mitt has no cushion, that could impact a boxer's wrist. A lack of cushion could also end up fracturing a trainer's metacarpals or phalanges.

Consequently, you may want to take note of a punching mitt's weight. If a mitt weighs less than a pound, chances are you're going to experience some blowback whenever sustaining any hitter's punches. If, on the other hand, the mitt weighs more than 3 lbs., that weight could impede your ability to swing quickly whenever taking part in any slipping drills (please see below).

From a trainer's perspective, it is critical to account for the fact that you'll be sweating in these mitts for several minutes at a time. Consequently, any worthwhile pair of mitts should allow your fingers to either breathe or rest comfortably inside a cushioned glove. Be sure to read some of each mitt's customer reviews before making a final purchasing decision. This way you can get a sense of whether there might be any risk of the gloves fitting too tight, or falling apart.

Several Training Drills That Are Centered Around Punch Mitts

Punch mitts, which are also referred to as focus mitts, are beneficial because they allow a fighter to simulate hitting a precise target while simultaneously slipping any punch that could be hurtling his way. As any trainer will attest, a fighter is never more exposed than in the seconds immediately after he has thrown a fist.

This may explain why one of the most common focus mitt drills involves both the boxer and the trainer throwing a straight jab at the same time. The goal of this drill is for a boxer to practice sidestepping the trainer's jab, while also landing his own punch (This is usually accomplished by striking upward at an angle, from a crouching position). Once the boxer has thrown an initial jab, the trainer may insist that he follow it up with a combination to work on timing: counter-jab-cut-hook-repeat, for example, and so on.

The trainer and the boxer develop a kind of shorthand for these drills, wherein every combination is represented via a number. If the trainer calls out, "Three!" for instance, then the boxer may respond by throwing a right-hand jab followed by a left-hand cross. Each number corresponds to a pattern. Over time, this focuses the boxer's precision. As a result, the trainer might call out any one of these combinations during an actual match in the same way that an NFL quarterback might call out a well-choreographed play.

One of the best drills for practicing combinations is called "The 4 Count." The 4 Count consists of throwing four repetitive combinations (e.g., "1-6-3-9!") in rapid succession. These combinations may vary based on style, and perhaps even upcoming opponents. As the boxer establishes a rhythm, the trainer might begin to increase the tempo, or even incorporate some slipping drills to keep the boxer on his toes. The purpose of a slipping drill is to teach a boxer how to maintain balance despite turning, or crouching, or otherwise disrupting his stance. During the majority of these drills, a boxer is made to duck or swivel, as the trainer swings the focus mitts to simulate incoming blows.

How The Focus Mitt Arrived Full Circle

Punch mitts were originally designed for training martial artists, who would use these mitts to harness their power. The goal for any martial artist was to hit each mitt in its central pocket, which was painted like a bull's-eye. The more adept a fighter became at placing his punches, the more successful he could be when squaring off against any opponent.

These early "focus mitts" were an asset in that - up until the early 1900s - martial artists had been forced to practice blocking or punching on a wooden dummy or the blunt exterior of a Thai pad. These apparatuses had little give, and they were ineffective in terms of teaching a fighter how to respond. Sparring was beneficial, but it also increased the chances that a fighter could get hurt. Focus mitts, on the other hand, were being worn by a sensei who was working with the martial artist, as opposed to against him.

There is no landmark patent for a focus mitt, although everyone from Rocky Marciano to Bruce Lee has been credited with either inventing these mitts, or bringing them into the mainstream. What is evident is that these mitts really took off throughout professional boxing's golden era (i.e., 1950-2000), a period during which the designation "punch mitts" became more apropos.

Today, focus mitts are experiencing a commercial resurgence thanks in large part to mixed martial arts. There is an irony to this in that martial artists were the first athletes to train by using focus mitts. This was, of course, eons before the UFC came along, and transformed martial arts into a billion-dollar sport.

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Last updated on July 06, 2017 by Sam Kraft

Sam is a marketing/communications professional and freelance writer who resides in Chicago, IL and is perpetually celebrating the Cubs’ 2016 World Series victory.

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