How To Choose The Best Thai Pads – Tips & Recommendations

July 16, 2018

Choosing a good kick pad for high-quality Muay Thai fighter can be tricky. All of us look at the slightest details. When it comes to Muay Thai, the shin needs to perform the impact. It leads you to some criteria which need to be reviewed thoroughly before choosing the most suitable one – kick pad thickness, size, shape, quality, price, durability, brand, possibility to simulate the real opponent… Choosing the best Thai pads is the combination of many attributes and requirements of Muay Thai as a martial art. And remember – kick pads can be used for knee strikes too. Best Thai pads should be able to absorb kick and knee impact and enable good feel of the strike.

Best Thai Pads -  Contender Kickboxing Training Thai Pads (Pair)

Contender Kickboxing Training Thai Pads (Pair)

The thickness is the first thing you need to pay attention to when it comes to the choice. Thicker kick pads will enable more protection for the holder. Their main purpose is a strong kick. However, thinner kick pads are used for quick strikes and your legs will be fast as lighting. Usually, a cheaper and thinner pair of kick pads means your arms will be bruised when your partner trains extremely strong strikes. Best Thai pads should be able to absorb the shock and protect the holder from strong strikes, bruising, and other possible injuries. Heavy injury, like a bone fracture, for example, is not an option in any case.

Size is an important criterion too. Actually, bigger kick pad means you can perform spinning strikes and techniques where you don’t have full control of your leg. Smaller kick pad is used for precision. For example, you are trying to hit the moving opponent with a high kick… bigger kick pad is not good for that kind of task. Brands usually offer 4 sizes – from small to extra large. Which are the best Thai pads when it comes to size? It purely depends on the goal of your training sessions! Make sure to choose the pad which has a strap for adjustment.

The choice of the shape is the trickiest for the best effect of a training session. You have a hybrid, straight, and curved kick pads. Some pads have the perfect spot where you should hit. Other pads are designed for precise kick or counter kick training session.

Hybrid Thai pads are used for a combination of kicks and punches. It is a good choice if your fighter likes to perform combinations and hates the fight of the long distance. They are thinner than traditional Thai pads. It is good for speed and quickness training sessions, but hard kicks are not an option. Hybrid pads may be the best Thai pads if you know to combine one boxing mitt with one hybrid pad. For example, your fighter can perform jab or cross followed by a high roundhouse kick or diagonal kick. Unusual combinations are a great choice for hybrid pads.

When it comes to quality/price ratio, you need to know that a kick pad which is made in Thailand usually has better quality than the one made outside of it. It will usually cost less money. A kick pad which is purchased in Thailand for the same amount of money will mostly last longer than the one from China, USA, or Europe. The best Thai pads, when it comes to the price/quality ratio, are the ones made in southern part of Thailand. It handles hard kicks better, it provides more protection, and it costs less! You will have to spend at least 70 dollars for high-quality Muay Thai kick pads! Otherwise, there are big chances you won’t be satisfied.

Best Thai Pads - Venum Giant Kick Pads

Venum Giant Kick Pads

Best Thai Pads - Training with Kick Pads

Durability and comfort might be tricky. The kick pad might be made in Thailand, but is it curved, straight, or hybrid? Hybrids don’t last too much if you decide to throw hard kicks. However, straight pads should be able to take it for a longer period of time. The most durable ones should be curved Thai pads. There is one simple reason – you don’t have to hit to create the curvature of your leg. But straight Thai pads are definitively better to the one who holds. What is your criterion for the best Thai pads when it comes to this?

Despite all of the brands from Thailand are excellent, FBT is a bit too expensive. There are many other high-quality brands like Fairtex, Top King, Twins… If you are ready to spend more money, you can freely try FBT. But Twins has same or even slight better performances for less money. When you purchase online, purchase a pair of kick pads. How would you let your practitioner kick two pads if one is straight, and other one curved? This might be a big mistake! Other good brands are Boon, Windy, Everlast, Contender, Farabi, Sanabul, Combat Sports…

Best Thai Pads - Meister XP2 Professional Curved Thai Pads

Meister XP2 Professional Curved Thai Pads

Possibility to simulate the real opponent is the last part of a puzzle. Best Thai pads are the ones which can cover every single situation in the fight. Can you perform low kicks, middle kicks, and high kicks? Can it simulate the opponent’s head and can you perform a counter kick? Here are the explanations:

  • Smaller kick pad can simulate the opponent’s head, but it is not good for low kicks;
  • Straight kick pad is good to simulate an opponent who blocks, but a curved one is a perfect to simulate the opponent who receives a strike;
  • You will need a larger kick pad for hard low kicks;
  • Hybrid Thai pads are very useful for counter kick training sessions, however bigger pads are suitable for spinning kicks to the body, and smaller ones for the spinning head kicks;
  • The choice of the best Thai pads is heavily related to the long-term goal of your fighter and the goal of the current training session.

The Best Thai Pads - Reviews & Recommendations

#1. Fairtex Muay Thai Training Curved Standard Kick Pads

Since this is a curved kick pad, it has the ability to absorb even the hardest kicks. Fairtex Muay Thai MMA Kickboxing Training Curved Standard kick pads protect you like a natural during the hard training sessions. The best Thai pads when it comes to the training of world class Muay Thai fighters.
Review grades: 5/5

  • Made of extremely durable leather construction.
  • It has two forearm support straps, which provides amazing balance and stability.
  • It enables premium training sessions.
  • It decreases the chance of injury.
  • Made in Thailand.
  • It has no sharp edges and it absorbs even the spinning back kick without a problem.
  • Very light and durable, made of leather construction.
  • Expensive.
  • Only black/white combination is available.
Best Thai Pads - Fairtex Muay Thai Training Curved Standard Kick Pads

Fairtex Muay Thai Training Curved Standard Kick Pads

#2. Twins Special Muay Thai Boxing Kicking Kick Pads KPL

Twins Special Muay Thai Boxing Kicking Kick Pads KPL is one of the best Thai pads for the ones who really want to enjoy design, hard training sessions, and various sizes.

Review grades: 5/5

  • Great foam padding.
  • Made of real leather construction.
  • Made in Thailand.
  • It absorbs the heaviest strikes without any problem.
  • Bigger sizes enable maximum protection to the holder.
  • Suitable for the ones who want rock solid shins.
  • Very durable product.
  • Easy for adjustment and excellent balance and stability.
  • The best kick pad when you want to simulate the movements of a real opponent when the strike is delivered.
  • Expensive.
  • Your leg might really hurt in the beginning since the pads are not curved.
  • A break-in period is required.
Best Thai Pads - Twins Special Boxing Kick Pads

Twins Special Boxing Kick Pads KPL-1

#3. Combat Sports Training Kick Thai Pads

If you want regular training sessions and don’t look for the smallest details, this sounds like a good choice. Combat Sports Muay Thai Kick Pads are great for beginners who want to feel the kicks, but it can also be used in the training of elite Muay Thai fighters.

Review grades: 4.4/5

  • Extremely light kick pads and very easy to use.
  • Balance and stability are good, it has two straps.
  • The price is acceptable.
  • International shipping is available.
  • Very durable kick pads.
  • Hands don’t hurt, no matter how hard the kick is.
  • Material behaves like real leather.
  • Only one size and color are available.
  • It is sometimes difficult to control during hard kicks.
  • The safety of the holder might be problematic – it doesn’t protect the area slightly above the elbow properly.
Best Thai Pads - Combat Sports Muay Thai Kick Pads

Combat Sports Muay Thai Kick Pads

#4. Sanabul BattleForged Muay Thai Kick Pads

Are you a fan of classic style looking kick pads? Sanabul BattleForged Muay Thai Kickboxing Kick Pads look classic, but their design and quality are excellent, just as price/quality ratio.


Review grades: 4.3/5

  • Price is excellent.
  • Ultralight kick pads.
  • Made of high-quality leather construction.
  • It has the ability to absorb hard kicks.
  • Kick pads are easy to take on or off due to a perfect secure Velcro strap system.
  • Two colors available – black and white.
  • Excellent stitching.
  • Not suitable for spinning back kicks and strong knees.
  • A bit harder to control when you connect kicks.
Best Thai Pads - Sanabul Battle Forged Muay Thai Kick Pads

Sanabul Battle Forged Muay Thai Kick Pads

#5. Farabi Fierce Curved Strike Training Thai Pad

This is an excellent curved training pad. With Farabi Fierce Curved Strike Training Pad, no break-in period is required and you will feel the kicks like a natural. You will be able to feel the distance and the strike very quickly.


Review grades: 3.9/5

  • Price is only 30 dollars per single item.
  • Excellent ability to absorb hard kicks.
  • Good gripping and safeguarded system for excellent balance and stability during training sessions.
  • Excellent durability and sturdiness.
  • High-quality stitching.
  • The impact of the force disseminates throughout the kick pad equally.
  • The chance of injury is very low.
  • Extremely lightweight kick pad, suitable for speed training sessions.
  • It is not sold in pairs.
  • The kick pads are not firm enough.
Best Thai Pads - Farabi Fierce Curved Strike Training Pad

Farabi Fierce Curved Strike Training Pad

#6. RDX Curved Training Thai Kick Pad

It is one of the best Thai pads. RDX Curved Training Thai Kick Pad offers excellent balance and stability during the hardest training sessions.


Review grades: 3.9/5

  • It absorbs the hardest kicks without any problems and your hands won’t hurt.
  • It has a leather handle.
  • The product offers double re-enforced straps – no matter how hard the kick is, chances of moving are very small.
  • Three colors are available.
  • Very durable product.
  • There are no sharp edges or extra stitching material.
  • Price is 41-46 dollars per one kick pad.
  • The kick pad is not light.
Best Thai Pads - RDX Curved Training Thai Pad

RDX Curved Training Thai Pad

#7. Everlast Thai Pad

If you haven’t got much money in your pocket left, Everlast Thai Pad sounds like a good choice. It is available in black color only, but it has high-quality performances.


Review grades: 3.9/5

  • Authentic Muay Thai design.
  • It is made of synthetic leather and it is a very durable product.
  • The product has dense foam padding.
  • It is easy to hold and suitable for fast kicks training sessions.
  • The price is 26 dollars per one kick pad when on sale.
  • The kick pad is durable.
  • Only one color available.
  • Only one size available.
  • It is not suitable for extremely strong kicks.
  • The kick pad is a little bulky.

Our Recommendations

When it comes to the product we like the most, it is definitively Fairtex. Maybe it costs a bit more, but you will get a high-quality training session, with a kick pad made of leather. The product will protect you during hard strikes and you will have very small chances of hurting yourself. Your training sessions will become an enjoyable and you will become a pro in a split of a second.

The top value product, when it comes to the price/quality ratio, is definitively Combat Sports. It is a very light kick pad which is affordable to many people. Despite it has only one design and color, this is a high-quality kick pad which will strengthen your shins like never before. A break-in period is required, but this is an outstanding kick pad which receives the hardest strikes with an ease. And there is a possibility of international shipping too!

Wrap it up

The choice of the kick pad definitively relies on many qualities. The best Thai pads are definitively the ones which fulfill your needs and enable progress. People are different, everybody asks for the different thing when it comes to the final decision. Here are some of our recommendations.

The professional fighter who wants results and has money should definitively try Fairtex or Twins out. These are excellent high-quality brands for elite training sessions.

Combat Sports and Sanabul are models with high quality and affordable price. If you don’t look for elite models made in Thailand, but you need a kicking pad that receives strong kicks with ease, this is your choice.

The ones who ask for a cheap solution should try Farabi or Everlast out. The products are good, but it is sold as a single item. You will have to order two instead of one.


Teaching, Friendly, Young, Passion. Always wanna go up & down. Hey, you gotta live, do you?  

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Robert Sterling  //  Author

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