MMA is a fast, aggressive sport that requires many different martial arts styles all wrapped into one. You will need to work on your skills in striking, grappling, cage work, clinch and just about anything else you can think of. You will need to be able to throw punches but still use your hands for grabbing and controlling, so you’ll need a glove that allows you to do all of these things easily.
It’s important that you use MMA gloves for MMA training and competing, but when you’re training specific stand up skills like boxing or Muay Thai, you still use appropriate gloves for those sports. MMA gloves offer protection and mobility for their purpose, but don’t give you enough protection for boxing, Muay Thai or heavy bag work.
When you’re looking for MMA gloves, you want to keep in mind that these are specific for MMA, so they need to be comfortable for you and also used and practiced in. Get MMA training in so you can get used to them. If you’re coming from a stand up background, you might be very comfortable in heavy, fully-enclosed gloves, and you can be very surprised by the difference you will feel in timing, weight and simply just being able to use your fingers.
MMA gloves are small, open-fingered gloves that are much lighter than boxing or Muay Thai gloves. They are designed to protect your knuckles, wrist and hands when you’re punching, but also so you can use your hands to grab and grapple effectively. The weight allows you to move your hands faster than you might with a heavier glove, but they don’t offer as much protection. This is why it is important to train with the proper glove for what you are working on.
Before you start buying your MMA gloves, you should decide what you’re going to use those for. There are a few different types of MMA gloves that you can use for either training or competition.
Types of MMA gloves
- MMA competition gloves- If you’re planning on competing, then you will want to have a pair of gloves that are specific for competition. These are 4 oz. gloves that offer minimal protection for your hands, which makes your hits much harder against your opponent. You should only use these in practice for very, very light sparring before your competition just to get used to the feel of them.
- MMA grappling gloves – These gloves are specifically designed to be used for practicing your grappling during MMA. They are set apart from other MMA gloves by having more finger flexibility to really work on your holding and grabbing. They’re a great choice to use for practice if you’re more focused on your ground game, because they will give you a bit of an edge in your training. However, you won’t be competing with these, so you should still get used to a glove with stiffer fingers if you plan on fighting in any competitions.
- MMA sparring gloves – If you are working a lot on your standup training, then MMA sparring gloves might be right for your practice. They are a bit heavier, usually 7 oz., and have more padding and shock-absorbing materials to allow them to protect you better when you are throwing punches. It is important to get a good quality sparring glove to give you and your opponent the most protection you can. This is also essential for kids boxing.
You can buy one of these or all of them depending on what you want to do with your gloves. If you are only going to practice and spar, then go ahead and just get sparring gloves. But if you want to compete, you can buy all three (as well as a good pair of boxing gloves). If you’re serious about training and competition, then you should have as much gear as you need.
You gota remember that boxing gloves and MMA gloves feel a LOT different when you get hit. Don’t believe me… watch some science.
Things to consider when choosing your MMA Gloves
- Quality of Materials
- Purpose- Decide what you’re going to use your gloves for. Are you just training MMA for fun or are you serious about competing? Do you need one pair of gloves for everything? Are you more focused on stand up so you don’t need a pair of grappling gloves? Are you more focused on grappling and prefer to work on your stand up with boxing gloves? These are all things you need to think of before you spend your money. Make sure you will use your gloves before you buy them.
- Quality of Materials – MMA gloves are made of either leather or synthetic leather. Leather gloves will be more expensive, but are of better quality and will last you a long time. If you plan on using your gloves everyday, then you should have a pair that will last you more than a few weeks. If you are just beginning and aren’t sure, of you’re not very serious about training, then you can probably get away with a cheaper pair. It is up to you and what you plan on doing.
- Size – You want to have a pair of MMA gloves that fit you properly. They will need to fit across the widest part of your hand, so it’s a good idea to know that measurement before you buy a pair. You also want to make sure that they fit in the right spot and are not too big and restricting your finger movement or too small and not offering you protection in the right places.
Know your measurements and refer to a sizing chart for the brand you’re going to purchase. For womens gloves, just follow the same measurements. I’ve found that medium gloves fit almost everyone.
You will absolutely be better off if you have your own gloves. If you plan on training MMA, then spend the money to get yourself a solid pair. Here is our list of our favorite MMA gloves on the market.
Final Thoughts On Our Top Mixed Martial Arts Glove Reviews for Sparring and Heavy Bag Work
MMA gloves are an important part of your gear. You will need them for training and for competition, and you will most likely need a few pairs for different styles. There are gloves that are specific for competition, and if you’re going to compete, then you should have a pair of these. You also might want to get a pair that are heavier and have more padding for sparring or that have good finger flexibility for grappling.
When picking a specific pair, make sure you know what you’re going to use them for. Get the appropriate glove for what you need. Decide how much you want to spend and how long you want them to last. We recommend that you spend a little bit more to get a better quality glove that will offer you the best protection and last you a long time. A good quality pair of gloves will be made of real leather and have padding that is strong enough to protect your hands. Also, make sure you’re getting the right size. If you have the wrong size gloves, you could end up with injuries.
If you have a good pair of gloves, they can help you with your training, your competition and how comfortable you feel during these. They’ll help protect you, allow you to throw and grab your opponent and give you enough speed to throw a powerful punch. For all of these things you want to have the best MMA gloves you can.