Why Do You Need A Good Muay Thai Boxing Gloves

September 7, 2017
muay thai gloves


very good muay thai fighter needs good muay thai boxing gloves. Fighters face many different situations which require the maximum of their possibilities. Almost every requires different treatments. This thread will show you the importance of gloves, which type of gloves you can choose and what are their main purposes. Don’t be surprised – the choice of a glove can affect your performances heavily.

Why do you need muay thai boxing gloves ?

A modern sport requires gladiators who fight under the rules. During the earlier centuries, bare knuckle fighting was very popular. In the ancient Greece, fighters were having cestus. It had only one purpose – to harm or kill the opponent. Today, the modern sport requires protection and rules. Here are the main functions of muay thai boxing gloves and why every fighter should obtain a good pair:

  • Decrease the chance to harm the opponent. The modern sport requires you to respect rules at the first place. A referee can also protect the opponent with counting, but good gloves will make the fight more interesting. Fighters will risk more if they are protected. If not, the fight will mostly go around avoiding and waiting for a perfect knockout opportunity. With muay thai boxing gloves, you have fewer chances to create a hard injury to your opponent.
  • Provide extra padding and protect knuckles from direct impact. If you have no gloves, the power of the impact goes on your knuckles, and the skin is very thin. You can easily earn a cut or you can open your skin without a good pair of gloves.
  • Prevent the knuckles from separating or smashing together. This is extremely important if the opponent moves and you don’t hit properly. In this case, you can easily break your fingers. A dislocation is another possibility.
  • Prevent your fingers from pushing into palm. This reduces the chances of unwanted wrist rotations. It protects eight wrist bones. If you break them, a doctor will have a very hard time returning them to the previous state.
muay thai boxing gloves

Hand anatomy

  • Reduce sudden movements of the thumb. This is very important if you want to avoid dislocation. A thumb moves up, down or sideways if an impact is hard. And especially if you block. You can also use hand wraps, see it here.
  • Prevent vibrations in the wrist and keep the wrist straight. This is good if you have to connect strikes. If an opponent is too strong, you will risk vibrations and unwanted rotations in the wrist every time you collide. If you prevent a hard head kick, gloves will prevent the fracture. Your opponent will have a hard time breaking your guard.
  • Crowd wants a fight that will last. Take a look at this video. The bare fist is very dangerous, as you can see. But do you think people would come to watch the fight if it is constantly over in the first round? Maybe some would, but attractive fights with more exchanges definitively attract more people.
  • Make training sessions safer. If you train clinching or conditional sparring, you don’t hit an opponent hard. But why to cut him open? Keep your aggression for the fight. Enjoy your training sessions and prepare better carrying a pair of muay thai gloves.

Types of Muay Thai gloves with their purposes

Every type of glove has its purpose. Each glove has three mutual features – it protects you, it protects the opponent and increases the effectiveness of the training session.

What do you think, how would a training session look like if the fighters wouldn’t use gloves? It is ok if you need to strengthen your wrist, perform shadow boxing or work on the technique. But how many injuries would occur on each training session? There are some people who simply cannot control their power.

There are generally five types of gloves used by Muay Thai fighters:

  • Training gloves
  • Competition gloves
  • Sparring gloves
  • Bag gloves
  • Clinching gloves.

muay thai boxing gloves

You can freely call it all-around gloves. You can perform all aspects of the training session with one type of Muay Thai gloves – clinching, sparring and bag training.

This is good, but if you want specific training which will focus on your specific features, this is a problem. You can spar with 16oz gloves, but if you punch mitts with these gloves, you will be slower. This is a good choice for beginners or fighters who want to save money.

If you want one pair of gloves for every single training activity, our recommendation is to buy 14-18oz gloves. However, you need to be aware it may affect your training performances.

Competition gloves

The best thing you can do is to keep these gloves for fighting sessions only. Don’t train in them – you will damage it. You need something good for your fights, a glove which will fulfill the rules and provide good protection for your knuckles.

Professional Muay Thai fights require from fighters to use lace up gloves. The gloves are stiffer than the regular Muay Thai boxing gloves and have a tight fit.

Depending on the competition and weight bout, you should have 8-12 oz gloves. If you don’t use them for any other activity but competition, it is good since the gloves will last longer and you will save your money.

Sparring gloves

The main purpose of those sparring gloves is providing more protection when punching. If you want to spar and don’t think much about the safety, it is always better to buy thicker gloves. You may be slower, but remember – safety in the first place!

The range of sparring gloves usually goes from 14 to 18 oz. Women who compete in lighter bouts can use 14oz gloves. Heavyweight fighters shouldn’t spar without 18oz gloves. The recommendation for middleweight fighters is 16-18 oz.

If you perform technical sparring, you may wear lighter gloves. But if you want harder sparring, better stick to the recommendations. Sparring gloves are bigger because they are designed for shock absorption and protection. The dominant factor when it comes to the choice is size and thickness, rarely brand.

If the glove is bigger, your hitting technique may spoil. You can also be slower, but you will suffer fewer injuries.

Bag gloves

Every Muay Thai fighter who wants to become a professional should have at least one pair. Bag gloves are a lot lighter than the regular ones. Designed for punching speed bag and mitts, its main purpose is to improve your speed.

Remember, those gloves are not designed for hard heavy punching bag hits – there is not enough padding. It will not protect you sufficiently. But it will boost your speed.

Don’t use these types of gloves for sparring since the protection is minimal. You may not scrape your hand, but you will hurt the opponent.

On the other side, you can use these Muay Thai gloves effectively for clinching. You can open the palm easier – it means clinching control will be better. You will be able to land more attacks of the clinch.

Clinching gloves

Clinching is a very important part of Muay Thai. Unlike the kickboxing or K1, holding and clinching are allowed. If you are a good clincher, you can easily knock your opponent out. Do not underestimate the importance of clinching gloves!

You can use standard gloves for clinching, but you may scratch your opponent’s neck. The good recommendation is any type of lace up gloves. You can also use bag gloves if you want to train clinch control.

Clinching gloves provide fewer grip than bare hands. The main benefit is a protection of the opponent from your nails.

If you are a serious fighter, you should have at least three types of Muay Thai gloves or even more. One pair of 16 or 18 oz gloves are perfect if you need to punch hard or spar. Buy two pairs of smaller gloves, one for competition and one for training sessions. Both pairs should be 8 to 12 oz gloves, depending on your weight bout. Remember to use competition gloves for fight nights only!

Especially, you want are extremely serious, obtain the fourth pair – clinching gloves. Do you want to clinch up and land knees like Anderson Silva and Wanderlei Silva? Do you want to be successful like Buakaw Banchamek? Let’s roll with the fourth pair! Keep training and never give up your dreams!

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Robert Sterling  //  Author

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