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MMA Gear

MMA Gear Essentials: Must-Have MMA Training Equipment for Every Fighter

Are you ready to embark on self-discovery and physical transformation through mixed martial arts? As a hero in the making, you know that every great adventure requires the right gear, and MMA is no exception. Whether drawn to the striking arts or grappling disciplines, you’ll need essential tools to protect yourself and maximize your training sessions.

But with so many options, it’s natural to feel overwhelmed and unsure where to start. That’s why we’re here to help. In this guide, we’ll break down the essential MMA gear you need to begin your training journey and provide insights on why each piece is crucial and how to use it correctly.

As you take your first steps towards becoming a skilled fighter, remember that the right equipment can make all the difference. From gloves to shin guards, mouthguards to headgear, we’ve got you covered with everything you need to know to get started on your path to greatness. So let’s dive in and discover the must-have gear for any beginner in the world of MMA.

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Protect Your Hands and Strengthen Your Strikes: The Importance of Gloves in MMA

As a beginner in mixed martial arts, one of the first pieces of gear you’ll need is a pair of boxing gloves. These gloves protect your hands and minimize the impact on your training partner during striking practice.

So what exactly are boxing gloves? They are padded gloves that cover your entire hand and wrist, allowing you to forcefully deliver punches without injuring your hands. They also protect your sparring partner from facial injuries that could result from bare-knuckle strikes. Additionally, using boxing gloves in training can help to strengthen your strikes.

Various boxing gloves, including those designed for sparring, training, and competition, are available. Depending on the weight class of the user, boxing gloves may weigh between 10oz and 16oz. However, smaller gloves ranging from 4oz to 8oz are typically used in MMA competitions. For beginners, a 16oz glove is recommended for added protection and to help build arm and shoulder strength.

When choosing boxing gloves, numerous options are available from various brands and designs. As a general rule, higher-priced gloves made of leather tend to offer better protection and durability than those made from synthetic materials like vinyl. Ultimately, investing in a quality pair of boxing gloves will pay off in the long run, providing you with the protection and performance you need to excel in MMA.

Kick with Confidence: Why Shin Guards are Essential MMA Gear for Beginners

If you’re serious about your mixed martial arts training, a reliable pair of shin guards is a must-have piece of gear. Designed to protect your lower legs and feet during sparring and training, shin guards are critical in preventing injuries and allowing you to focus on perfecting your techniques.

So what exactly is a shin guard? Simply put, it’s a piece of equipment designed to cover your shins and feet and absorb the impact of strikes during training. Without proper protection, your shins and feet are vulnerable to injury, which can sideline you from training for extended periods.

There are a variety of factors to take into account when selecting the appropriate shin guards. For MMA training, selecting a shin guard that fits properly and provides adequate leg coverage is essential. Quality and durability are also crucial, as you’ll want a pair of shin guards that can withstand the rigors of regular training sessions. Premium leather shin guards are often a good investment for those planning to train long-term.

Another crucial consideration when selecting shin guards is their protection for the top of your foot. This area contains smaller, softer bones that are particularly susceptible to injury, so make sure your shin guards provide ample padding and flexibility to minimize the risk of harm.

Investing in a quality pair of shin guards can make all the difference in your MMA training journey. With the right gear, you can kick confidently, protect yourself from injuries, and keep pushing yourself toward your goals.

Protect Your Most Vital Asset: The Importance of Head Gear in MMA Training

Regarding mixed martial arts, there’s no denying that your head is one of your most vital assets. Investing in a high-quality head guard is essential for any serious MMA athlete. Suitable headgear protects you from superficial injuries to the face and head and allows you to spar harder and more often with reduced risk of head injuries.

The headgear is protective equipment made from materials like high-density foam that absorbs impact and is designed to cover your head. While headgear is not worn during MMA competitions, it is strongly recommended for sparring and training, especially for striking-focused exercises with a higher risk of head injuries.

The benefits of headgear are numerous. They can help prevent injuries like broken noses, cuts to the eyebrows, and concussions and reduce the impact of accidental headbutts or eardrum damage. There are several essential aspects to remember when selecting headgear for MMA training. First, ensure you get the right size for a perfect fit without affecting your focus or line of sight. Additionally, consider the weight-to-size ratio, as a lighter head guard will be more comfortable and feel like a natural extension of your body.

Visibility is also crucial, as you need to ensure that the opening of your eyes does not obstruct your peripheral vision. Lastly, check the protection rating of your headgear, ensuring that it provides comprehensive protection not just for the front but also for the sides and rear of your head.

In MMA, your head is critical to your overall safety and success. By investing in high-quality headgear, you can train with confidence and peace of mind, knowing you’re taking the necessary steps to protect yourself from harm.

Protect Your Pearly Whites: Why a Mouth Guard is Essential MMA Gear

Protecting your teeth and gums is crucial in the fast-paced world of mixed martial arts. That’s why a high-quality mouthguard is essential gear for fighters at all levels, whether you’re training or competing. Designed to minimize dental fractures, jaw injuries, and head trauma from strikes to the face, a mouth guard is a simple but highly effective way to reduce the risk of injury and keep you in the game.

So, what exactly is a mouthguard? It’s a protective device made of a thermoplastic material that covers your teeth and gums, providing a barrier between your delicate mouth tissues and the hard-hitting strikes that are a fundamental part of MMA. A well-made mouth guard can mold itself to the unique shape of your mouth for a personalized fit that maximizes both comfort and protection.

In top MMA organizations like the UFC, mouthguards are mandatory for all fighters during competition. But even during training, a mouthguard can be a game-changer, protecting you from costly and painful injuries like broken teeth that can derail your progress and sideline you from the sport you love.

There are several important factors to consider when selecting the right mouthguard. First and foremost, make sure you get the right fit to ensure both comfort and safety. Look for a mouth guard that is impact tested, approved, and certified to CE standards. Finally, while style and design are essential, the most critical consideration should always be protected. Investing in a high-quality mouthguard lets, you train and compete confidently, knowing you’re taking the necessary steps to safeguard your oral health and overall well-being.

Protect Your Hands and Amplify Your Strikes: The Versatility of MMA Gloves in Mixed Martial Arts

MMA gloves are a vital piece of fight gear for any serious mixed martial arts athlete. Designed to protect your hands and amplify your strikes, these gloves can be used in various styles of MMA, from grappling to striking. But what exactly are they, and why are they essential for success in this dynamic and demanding sport?

Put, MMA gloves or grappling gloves are smaller and lighter in weight than traditional boxing gloves, with an opening that exposes the fingers for greater flexibility and maneuverability during grappling and clinch fighting. There are two primary types of MMA gloves: sparring gloves, which feature more padding and weigh around 7oz, and competition gloves, which are lighter and have little padding, typically weighing in at 4oz-6oz.

In many MMA organizations, wearing gloves during competition is mandatory. However, gloves are even more critical during training, where they protect your hands during different fighting styles, minimize the risk of injury, and help amplify the impact of your strikes. Some critics argue that padded gloves in MMA may threaten fighters, as they allow more brutal hits to the head without damaging the face or hands.

When choosing MMA gloves for training, a larger grappling glove weighing around 7oz is essential. This will allow for a looser fit if you wear hand wraps, providing protection and flexibility. Additionally, investing in high-quality leather gloves is always wise for those planning to train in MMA long-term, as they offer superior durability and longevity.

Every advantage counts in mixed martial arts’ fast-paced and physically demanding world. Using suitable MMA gloves and incorporating them into your training regimen can enhance your performance, protect yourself from injury, and achieve your goals in this exciting and challenging sport.

MMA Shorts: Unrestricted Movement and Peak Performance for Any Fighter

MMA shorts are not just for professional mixed martial artists – they’re an essential part of any athlete’s wardrobe, whether you’re a seasoned fighter or just starting. Designed to provide unrestricted movement and unparalleled comfort during striking while maintaining peak performance on the mats, these shorts are a must-have for anyone serious about MMA training.

There are three primary types, each with unique benefits and features. First, there are the traditional board-type MMA K1 shorts, also known as “MMA grappling shorts.” These shorts feature a longer leg length and a velcro and drawstring closure for superior hold at the waist. They’re ideal for all mixed martial arts styles, providing ample stretch during striking while safeguarding the legs from scratches during a scrap.

Next are the vale tudo style compression shorts, designed to provide maximum flexibility and unrestricted movement during combat. However, these shorts can’t be worn independently and require a groin guard for complete protection.

Finally, there are hybrid MMA shorts, an evolution of both the board short and vale tudo styles. These shorts come in various designs and cuts, with the Engage MMA hybrid shorts leading the pack in performance, comfort, and style. With a shorter leg length, higher reinforced leg slits, and lightweight materials that eliminate irritation from velcro, these shorts are the ultimate choice for severe MMA athletes.

Compression Rash Guards: More Than Just a Garment

Compression rash guards are more than just a garment – they’re an essential piece of MMA gear that offers numerous benefits to athletes of all levels. Designed to protect the skin from cuts and abrasions during grappling sessions, these garments are manufactured using a combination of polyester, spandex, and other elastic microfibre materials, providing a tight fit that wicks away sweat and evaporates moisture.

In addition to their protective properties, compression rash guards have been shown to offer a range of health benefits. By improving recovery and reducing the Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) rate, these garments can help athletes train harder and longer, with less downtime between sessions. They also help reduce the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), a potentially life-threatening condition caused by blood clots in the legs.

Compression rash guards are trendy in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (No Gi), where they’re often used to identify different skill levels through belt grading incorporated into competition-graded rash guards. These garments come in various styles, including long and short-sleeve tops, leggings, tights, and shorts, and are available in multiple colors and designs to suit any athlete’s preferences.

Groin Guards: Protecting Your Family Jewels

Let’s face it – no one wants to get hit in the family jewels. That’s why the groin guard, also known as the groin protector or groin cup, is essential training equipment for mixed martial arts. The groin guard is mandatory equipment for amateur and professional combat sports, designed to protect your sensitive areas in the lower body.

While blows to the groin are prohibited in competition, accidents can happen during training. All it takes is one stray knee or errant kick, and you could be in severe pain with long-term damage. That’s why it’s best to wear a groin guard during training, so you can get used to wearing it if you’re planning to compete.

A groin guard is a sturdy material molded into a shape that covers the genital areas, protecting them from severe injuries during striking or sparring. While wearing a groin guard doesn’t give you 100% protection, it significantly lessens the damage, making it an essential piece of MMA gear for anyone serious about their training and development.

Hand wraps: The Unsung Hero of MMA Gear

Hand wraps may not be the flashiest piece of MMA gear, but they’re essential for anyone serious about their training. Designed to protect your hands and wrists during striking, hand wraps provide added support and stability to help prevent injuries and increase your punching power.

Hand wraps are cloth strips around your hands and wrists, providing extra support to your bones and tendons. By distributing the force of a punch across a wider area, hand wraps help to prevent injuries like sprains, fractures, and other long-term damage.

But that’s not all – hand wraps also help to keep your gloves in place, preventing them from slipping or sliding around during training or competition. They absorb sweat and moisture, preventing your gloves from becoming too damp and slippery.

Gear Up for Your MMA Training: The Essential Elbow Pads, Knee Pads, and Focus Pads

While the essential MMA gear we’ve already discussed is critical for anyone starting in mixed martial arts, a few other pieces of equipment can be helpful in certain situations. Elbow and knee pads are handy for fighters with many grappling or takedown techniques, as they can help protect these vulnerable joints from injury. These pads can be made of neoprene or foam and are designed to fit snugly over the joint without inhibiting movement.

Similarly, focus pads can be a valuable tool for improving striking accuracy and technique. These pads are usually handheld by a training partner or coach, who can move them around to provide a target for strikes. This helps fighters work on their timing, precision, and power while building up their endurance and stamina.

While not strictly necessary for all MMA practitioners, these pieces of gear can be helpful for those who want to take their training to the next level or prepare for specific types of competition.

MMA Gear Maintenance: How to Keep Your Gear in Top Condition

MMA Gloves

To keep your MMA gloves in good condition, it is essential to maintain them regularly. After every training session, you can start by wiping them down with a damp cloth to remove sweat and dirt. Allow them to air dry in a cool, dry place. Avoid exposing your gloves to direct sunlight or heat, which can damage the material.

If your gloves smell, use a deodorizing spray or sprinkle baking soda inside them to absorb any odors. Some gloves come with removable inserts that you can wash separately in cold water and air dry.

It is also crucial to check your gloves for any signs of wear and tear, such as ripped seams or loose padding. If you notice any damage, it is best to replace them immediately to avoid injury during training or competition.

By following these simple maintenance tips, you can extend the life of your MMA gloves and ensure they remain in excellent condition for your training sessions.

Shin guards

After each use, wash your shin guards with a damp cloth to remove any accumulated dirt or sweat. Avoid using harsh detergents that can damage the material. Hang them to dry in a well-ventilated area, and never leave them in a damp environment. Storing them in a breathable bag or container can help prevent any odors from developing. Make sure to check the straps and padding regularly and replace them if they become worn out or damaged.


To keep your headgear in top condition, it’s essential to clean it regularly with a damp cloth and mild soap. Avoid using harsh chemicals that can cause damage to the padding or the outer shell. After cleaning, let it air dry completely before storing it in a cool and dry place. Inspect the chin strap, ear protection, and padding regularly, and replace any damaged or worn-out parts immediately.

Mouth guard

After every use, rinse your mouth guard with cold water and then soak it in a mixture of water and mouthwash for a few minutes. Avoid using hot water, which can cause the mouth guard to warp. Let it air dry completely before storing it in a clean and dry container. Inspect it regularly for any signs of wear and tear, and replace it every six months or as the manufacturer recommends.

At Way of Martial Arts, we understand the importance of having the best gear for your MMA training. We have covered the essential MMA gear for beginners, including boxing gloves, shin guards, headgear, mouth guards, MMA gloves, compression rash guards, groin guards, and elbow, knee, and focus pads. We believe every piece of equipment is essential to ensure safety, comfort, and performance during training.

Our experts have put together various “best of” reviews for all types of MMA gear, including product-specific reviews to help you make informed decisions when purchasing your equipment. We understand that the quality of your gear can make a significant difference in your performance and safety, and that’s why we have taken the time to review and test the best MMA gear on the market.

Thai Style Heavy Bags

Thai Style Heavy Bag, coupled with Thai pads and regular punching bags are a testament to the rigorous training and unyielding spirit of fighters. Originating from the land of Muay Thai, Thailand, these bags embody the essence of a martial art revered for its devastating strikes and fluid movements.

Crafted to endure the toughest of blows, Thai heavy bags are typically longer and narrower than their Western counterparts. This unique design, often stretching to a length of six feet, allows practitioners to unleash a full range of strikes – from the bone-crunching low kicks synonymous with Muay Thai to the soaring high kicks and knee strikes that define its formidable arsenal. The bag’s construction, often filled with materials like cloth, sand, or rubber, is engineered to mimic the resistance and feel of a real opponent, making it an indispensable tool for honing both power and precision in the gym.

Yet the Thai heavy bag is more than just a piece of equipment; it’s a silent teacher. As fighters rhythmically pound the bag, they learn the art of timing and develop an acute sense of distance. Each strike, whether a sharp jab or a thunderous elbow, is a conversation between the fighter and the bag, a dialogue that hones technique and builds endurance.

Interestingly, the use of heavy bags in Muay Thai training can be traced back to ancient times when warriors prepared for battle. Today, this tradition continues in modern gyms, where the thud of leather against the bag is a familiar anthem, echoing the relentless pursuit of mastery.

For enthusiasts and professionals alike, training with a Thai heavy bag is a rite of passage. It’s where stamina is tested, willpower is forged, and the spirit of a fighter is born. The bag doesn’t just absorb strikes; it absorbs sweat, determination, and the countless hours dedicated to the pursuit of martial excellence. Not to mention they are available at a great price.

Frequently Asked Questions About MMA Gear

What is the purpose of wearing MMA gloves?

The purpose of wearing MMA gloves is to protect the hands when striking and to allow for grappling maneuvers with exposed fingers.

A mouth guard is essential for MMA fighters as it minimizes dental fractures, jaw injuries, and head trauma from strikes to the face.

Compression rash guards are garments worn tightly to the skin that protects the skin from cuts or abrasions during grappling sessions. They also provide extra benefits such as improved recovery, reduced muscle soreness, and reduced Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) risk.

Sparring MMA gloves have more padding weighing around 7oz, while competition MMA gloves have little padding and weigh around 4oz-6oz. Competition gloves are used in MMA fights, while sparring gloves are used in training to reduce the risk of injury.

All MMA equipment is vital in its way, but the essential equipment to buy is the mouthguard. It protects the teeth, jaw, and head from impact and can prevent expensive visits to the dentist. In addition, it is mandatory in most MMA competitions.

Vladimir Vladisavljevic has been training in the art of kickboxing for over seven years, holds a Taekwondo black belt, and has a master's degree in sports and physical education. He's also a huge mixed martial arts fan. He's a big deal in Bulgaria as a mixed martial arts commentator, analyst, and podcaster.
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Vladimir Vladisavljevic

Vladimir Vladisavljevic has a master's degree in sports and physical education. He has been training in kickboxing for over seven years and holds a Taekwondo black belt. He's also a huge mixed martial arts fan. Vladimir is a big deal in Bulgaria as a mixed martial arts commentator, analyst, and podcaster. He was known as The Bulgarian Cowboy in the Western world. In addition, he has a YouTube channel where he talks about his love of esports, one of the fastest-growing fields in the world. Our testing and reviewing method.
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