In recent months, I have tested a bunch of boxing and combat sports equipment, among which were also a couple of punching dummy bags. Out of all the punching dummies I have tested, I found the Century B.O.B. Body Opponent Bag to be the best punching dummy bag for training any type of combat sport or martial art.
Martial arts and combat training can be some of the most fulfilling experiences of one’s life. I know that personally since I have been training martial arts for nearly a decade. However, the equipment you use can make or break the journey. Using bad equipment can lead to injuries or just completely demotivate you from training, which is why I value high-quality training gear and equipment.
When it comes to dummy bags for boxing or other types of martial arts training, I believe that quality is very important for anyone who wants to avoid injury or perhaps spending a lot of money on a product they can only use for a few weeks or months at best.
I believe that the Century B.O.B. Body Opponent Bag is the best out of all punching dummies because time has proven it to be sturdy and durable, and it is also great at providing a realistic striking feel. Aside from that, it is really fun to use and is also adjustable in terms of height, which makes it versatile.
In this text, I have compiled a list of some of the best boxing/combat sports punching dummies to help you choose the best one for your needs. Aside from the Best Overall, there will be Best Budget and other categories so you can choose the optimal piece of equipment for your training sessions.
If you are interested in finding out more about punching dummies or perhaps buying one, but you don’t yet know which one to choose, this text is for you! Read on!
Century B.O.B. Body Opponent Bag – Best Overall
The best punching dummy overall, the B.O.B. is an iconic piece of equipment that can be found in almost every combat sports gym or martial arts dojo. From funny videos to professional athletes’ highlights videos, there is barely a setting in which this dummy hasn’t been in. The reason for this is its unmatched quality and simplicity of use.
The design of the Century B.O.B. is one that remained iconic over the years, both because of its effectiveness and its unique aesthetic. It is a male torso made out of high-quality materials to represent a human torso so that the punching and kicking experience can be a lot more real than on a heavy bag.
The “skin” of the dummy is made out of high-strength plastisol and is very realistic. I have one of these very punching dummies in my home gym, and I can attest to the fact that it is near the closest thing to skin that has been placed on a dummy. It feels almost exactly like human skin, except that it is colder and without any hair on it.
The inside of the torso, which is basically what gives it its general shape and durability, is made of high-density urethane foam, which is sturdy but also quite light on the joints and bones of someone punching it. All-in-all, the torso is made out of a combination of some very high-quality and effective materials, which make the dummy feel realistic and also look awesome.
The weight on the bottom can be filled with any material of your choosing, and when filled weighs around 270 lbs. The most common filler choices are water and sand since these are the easiest to fill them with and are also the most widely available options. However, many people use pebbles, rice, beans, or whatever other material they have an abundance of. The main goal is to weigh it down as much as possible so that it doesn’t move or rock around when receiving the strikes.
I would recommend sand, pebbles, or other dry materials for the filling because with water there is quite a danger of algae and other organisms rapidly multiplying in the tank. Though this doesn’t pose any threat to one’s safety and can also be cleaned, having a dry filling is much less of a fuss and is cleaner.
The only negative comment one can have about the Century B.O.B. is that if a highly experienced and strong striker starts training on it, it is just not heavy enough to hold up against large blows. Many Youtube videos also depict how one of these can be toppled over relatively easily if that is the goal. However, I don’t agree that that is a fair commentary since heavy bags are the products that were made for extremely powerful striking, not dummies. Though the B.O.B. is able to take relatively strong punches, it is a better tool for training accuracy, precision, realistic drills, speed, and more. Basically, the only thing you cannot properly train on a B.O.B. is haymaker punches directed at toppling it over.
Another cool feature of this product is that it can be adjusted in height from 60 all the way to 78 inches tall. This makes it really versatile since both shorter and taller people can use it without an issue. Also, you can use this feature to diversify your training, since you can “simulate” fighting taller or shorter opponents and practice your strikes accordingly. The only issue which is sometimes noted is that if you adjust it to the tallest setting, 78 inches, striking the head makes the whole dummy a little bit more wobbly than it should be, however, this should be a big issue if you weigh the dummy down properly.
Also, do make sure that you place this product on a surface that isn’t sensitive, so either in your garage, garden, gym, or another place where it cannot really hurt the floor. Even though it won’t damage your floor like a steel heavy bag stand could (check out this article on heavy bag stands if you are interested!), it still might cause some unwanted scraping or scratching.
If you are interested in investing in one of the best punching dummies of all time and have an iconic B.O.B. at home, all you have to do is click on this button, which will take you to the product’s Amazon page!
Ring to Cage MMA Man-Shaped Dummy Punching Bag – Best Budget Option
This product is one that I had a lot of fun practicing with and testing, and I am sure you will too. It is the Man-Shaped Dummy Punching Bag by Ring to Cage, and it could be called a hybrid between a punching dummy and a bag, since it can be hung up like a heavy bag, but it can also be used in different ways.
This dummy is made out of polyester-coated vinyl and is best to fill with old t-shirts or other unused fabric for the best feel. The reason for this is that if you fill it with water or sand, it can rupture, since it is uneven in shape and often hung up on a heavy bag stand. Filling it with fabric and clothes on the other hand can provide a solid filling which is great for punches, but one that won’t damage or rupture the dummy.
The most amazing feature of this bag is that it can be used either as a human-shaped boxing bag, hung up on a heavy bag stand, or as a grappling dummy as well. This versatility and the great price point of this high-quality product makes it the best budget option out there in terms of punching dummy bags. For a reasonable price, you can get a grappling dummy and a striking dummy in one.
I had a lot of fun using this product since when hung up, I could strike it with maximum strength to simulate a real fight and it only moved like a heavy bag. I could also aim for different organs or weaker points like on a real human, so precision training is also an option with this bag. After being done with striking, I tried to practice my grappling skills. Although it wasn’t anywhere near as productive as training with a real human, it was probably as productive as training with a dummy can get, so no issues there.
If you don’t have a lot of cash to burn but are looking for an awesome dummy product you can practice both strikes and grapple on, this product is the one that I would recommend to you. Check out this link to Amazon if you are interested in purchasing one for yourself!
DEAGLE MMA Master Smith BJJ MMA Sitting Dummy – Best for Grappling and Ground-and-Pound
The Deagle MMA Sitting Dummy is the absolute best dummy you can find at a surprisingly low cost if you are looking to improve your grappling and ground-and-pound game at home during the pandemic. Since the virus caused most of the gyms and training facilities worldwide to close, it is not a surprise that demands for all sorts of grappling and striking dummies have skyrocketed, as people are trying to get the best they can in the comfort and safety of their homes.
This dummy provides just that. If you aren’t into grappling or you only train a standing martial art, the previous products will suit you better probably, but if you want to practice some groundwork, this is your best bet.
Ground-and-pound, just like all forms of grappling, is one of the most important skills an MMA fighter needs to know in order to be successful in the ring (or the octagon). It is one of the most effective ways to tire out, wear down or even finish your opponent, and using a heavy bag or some other striking-based bag isn’t optimal for practicing this skill, since the filling can often become unbalanced or the material of the bag can become damaged.
This bag is also shaped in a way that mimics a sitting person, which is great for practicing wrestling and grappling into a position of dominance, optimal for ground-and-pound. Since it has extended arms compared to previous versions, unless you are very tall, you can also practice things like armbars and Americanos on the dummy, which are all amazing techniques to have in your arsenal.
The only downside that I saw to this dummy is that it is too grappling-oriented. Yes, you can practice a ton of ground-and-pound and similar striking techniques which are irreplaceable in a finger’s repertoire, however, the striking options are quite limited. The myriad of grappling and wrestling positions and techniques you can practice with it makes up for that, though.
If you are interested in getting yourself a Deagle MMA Sitting Dummy, click on this button and purchase yours today!
UFC Pro 70lb Ground & Pound Throwing Dummy – Best Versatile
A product from the most popular MMA organization in the history of fighting, this 70lb dummy will be a great addition to your combat sports equipment collection. It has a very functional shape, and even though it does not resemble a human, a large majority of strikes, throws, ground-and-pound movements can be easily practiced with the use of this product.
With the traditional red and black colors of the UFC, this dummy looks great aesthetically, but that isn’t the only thing that makes it awesome. It is shaped in a way that allows for the practicing of strikes like uppercuts or knees to the body. Many, or actually most bags are not shaped in a way that can allow this, which makes this bag highly functional and versatile.
Though it only weighs 70lbs, which is nowhere near a grown person, it is still great for practicing throws, some forms of takedowns, and also ground-and-pound. The versatility of this product is what makes it so awesome, since you can deliver some punches and knees to it, then grab it and throw it on the ground and go into a ground-and-pound drill, where you can also specifically target the liver, ribcage, jaws or other areas on the body which are sensitive to strikes. Though these body parts are not visible on the dummy, the angles needed to strike them can be practiced easily due to the shape of the product.
The UFC Dummy is also made out of highly durable polyurethane, and also has reinforced stitching in some key parts, which together guarantee long-lasting function.
The issue I had with this dummy, though it was really fun and productive to use, is that it cannot be hung. It cannot be used as a punching bag, only if you manage to stand it up with some DIY stand or if a friend holds it from aside, which can be dangerous. Aside from that, there were absolutely no issues I found. The material seems durable and great to the touch, the shape of the product makes it versatile, and the weight was just enough for me to practice throws over and over again without tiring out, mostly focusing on the form, not the brute strength.
If you are interested in buying this awesome and versatile bag, made by the one and only UFC company, check out this button and get yours today!
Guide to Buying Punching Dummy Bags
In this section, I will be going through some major things one should take into consideration when searching for and purchasing a punching dummy bag in order to help you avoid making some significant mistakes.
Identify the Purpose
A very important but often overlooked aspect of buying dummies is making sure you have figured out the exact reason why you want to buy one. This is probably the most important one out there since it will determine the type of dummy you will be looking for.
If you are training in Taekwondo, for example, you probably won’t need something that is also used for grappling, but rather a striking-only dummy, in which case the B.O.B. might be a great option for you.
However, if you are looking to improve your ground finishing skills, and are looking for an extra piece of equipment to compliment your boxing bag, your best bet would be to get a more grappling-inspired dummy.
Before purchasing the product, decide what you will use it for, since different products are meant for different uses, and most of these items are not really on the cheap side. Of course, if you want to or can afford to buy multiple dummies for different purposes, do so, but if you don’t want to waste your money, make sure you buy to suit your needs.
The material a dummy is made out of is extremely important, and for multiple reasons. Heavy bags can be made out of a couple of different materials like leather or PU, but there isn’t all that much diversity. However, when it comes to dummies, there are a bunch of different materials they can be made out of and also a ton of different filling materials used.
Again, an important part of this is to fit the product to your needs, but even more important than that is the durability of the product you are going to buy. In an industry where the number one goal and priority is to punch, strike, kick, grapple your opponent or the equipment you are training with, durability is key.
Look for high-quality synthetic materials or things like real leather. When buying combat gear, don’t be afraid to spend a bit more on a higher-quality item, since you probably won’t be buying another one soon. Quality and durability is the most important aspect of good training gear, so don’t ignore it.
It Should Cover the Range of Your Training
This is also really important. Don’t get a dummy on which you can’t practice the strikes you use often. Many dummies and even more punching bags are not fit for practicing things like uppercuts, knees, and a bunch of other, otherwise highly effective movements. If you are getting a dummy, it is likely for the realistic training experience, so never settle for a product that doesn’t provide just that.
All the products on this list, for example, can be used for a variety of techniques, even the ones which don’t look like humans. The UFC product, which doesn’t look at all like a person, is great for practicing abdomen punches, uppercuts, and all different types of ground-and-pound punches from the side or above.
Out of all of the amazing products on this list, the B.O.B. is still the winner at the end of the day. One of the main reasons for that is just how iconic and also durable it is, which are two characteristics that complement each other perfectly. By this, I mean that the product’s durability is partly what made it so iconic and popular, and the popularity it has guarantees high-quality and durability as well.
It is one of the best dummies on the market for practicing striking arts and combat systems since the realistic recreation of a human torso make precision-focused training easier and more available to people even during times like the pandemic.
There is a lot more to be said about the B.O.B., and all of it would be positive, but to conclude, I would end by saying that if there was one punching dummy that I could recommend to a fighter of any level who is looking for a dummy, it would definitely be the Century B.O.B.
If you want to purchase one for yourself and start training on one of the most realistic humanoid punching dummies on the market, check out this button and order yours today!