A punching bag (also known as heavy bag) is a piece of exercise equipment you can use to improve your health and fitness. In fact, it is used by well-known trainers and professionals of all ages.
Although it is physically demanding, a punching bag workout increases your strength and stamina effectively.
Heavy-bag workouts provide amazing health benefits to your physical and mental capabilities. Thus, a punching bag is a great addition to your home or commercial gym.
Ideally, you can include heavy-bag workouts as part of your fitness plan to keep yourself motivated, healthy, and energetic.
Yet, doing the same exercise with a heavy bag is not going to yield results. As much as possible, implement workout varieties to get maximum benefits that your body needs.
Heavy-Bag Workouts: Physical Health Benefits
1. Improves aerobic fitness
Punching workouts are aerobic exercises because it involves various movements around the equipment as you change your body positions. This workout improves your aerobic fitness, as it challenges your cardio-respiratory system.
Throwing punches for at least two minutes, while sustaining high intensity, adds to the aerobic dimension and provides a great workout.
To maximize aerobic benefits, consider increasing your punching time.
2. Strengthens core stability and coordination
Staying on your toes and carrying your weight from one foot to the other while punching the bag helps develop your core stability. Meanwhile, moving around the bag and throwing punches increases your hand-foot-eye coordination.
Excellent coordination and stability give your body a good posture, grace, and firm. Nevertheless, they provide great support to your body and help you avoid injuries from accidental falls.
3. Boosts muscle power and strength
Punching bags are among the excellent activities you can perform in boosting your muscle power and strength effectively.
You might be wondering what muscles are being worked when doing heavy-bag workouts. Further, the muscles that are worked on include the arms, shoulder, chest, back, and waist.
Meanwhile, the legs are involved when generating power in the upper body. You will notice this when performing hooks and uppercuts, as you are using your arms and backs while punching the bag.
All of these combined efficiently adds to your chest and shoulder strength. In case you want to develop more muscle mass, you need to have full-body workout variations.
4. Increases stamina and endurance
Since heavy-bag workouts are considered an aerobic workout, it increases your heart rate and oxygen supply—this process makes your heart and lungs strong and healthy.
And as you exercise, these organs work harder to supply enough oxygen throughout your body, which increases your body's stamina and endurance successfully.
5. Helps build upper body strength
Constantly punching the bag develops your upper body strength. Plus, it allows you to throw and receive quick punches without being hurt.
6. Builds strong bones and ligaments
Heavy-bag workouts strengthen your bones and ligaments.
Further, this exercise reduces your chances of getting osteoporosis. Additionally, resisting the punching bag's pressure makes your ligaments stronger.
7. Enhances your boxing technique
Heavy-bag workouts are an excellent workout to improve your punches, body movement, and performance. With these being said, you are likely to develop boxing skills and technique, as long as proper posture is observed.
In turn, punching bags keep everything tight.
Heavy-Bag Workouts: Mental Health Benefits
8. Develops your self-defense skills
Some trainers see punching bag as an "opponent;" they need to do what it takes to knock the enemy down.
But the main difference here is that the bag does not hit you back. So it's a perfect way to practice your self-defense skills through a series of punches.
Knowing that you have these defense skills can save not only your life but also others in times of troubles.
9. Builds self-esteem and confidence
Heavy-bag workouts also build your confidence and develop boxing techniques, which you can use when it is needed the most i.e. in the boxing ring or self-defense.
10. Decreases stress
Did you know that punching bag is a great way to release your body's stress and pressure?
Ideally, heavy-bag workouts benefit you mentally since it encompasses stress-countering attributes. The fact that it is physically exhausting and aggressive exercise allows your mind to concentrate while you strike the bag.
By focusing your mind and body on the workout, you are releasing the toxins (which piled up as a result of internal stress). In turn, your body lowers the stress level and improves the immune system.
It also leads to the release of endorphins, which is the natural chemical that elevates your mood. Nonetheless, heavy-bag workouts help in counteracting depression and anxiety.
Heavy-Bag Workouts: Weight Loss Benefits
11. Helps you lose weight and tones the body
Regular aerobic exercise assists in burning calories; hence you will lose weight as you punch the bag.
For example, training for one hour helps your body burn about 500 calories. As you hit the heavy bag, you encounter resistance from it. This activity helps in strengthening and toning your body muscles. Moreover, it improves your overall lean muscle mass and reduces visceral fat.
With reduced fat percentage in the body, you are less likely to get health disorders, such as diabetes and heart diseases.
As you build lean muscle mass, you raise the metabolic rate and burn calories to the maximum level.
12. Improves your body shape
A heavy-bag cardio workout works on the biceps, shoulders, and back; thus, providing you with a great way of stripping body fat and revealing the underlying muscles.
This, in turn, enhances your physique as it cuts out the excess fat while shaping your body muscles.
13. Saves your money
There are several workouts you can do with a heavy bag. Some of them include jab, cross, uppercuts, and hooks. You can even try combos and upgrade your bag's resistance level.
With the mentioned activities, you would not be needing additional equipment to sustain your fitness, unless you wanted to build your overall physique and muscles.
Punching Bag Workout for Beginners
If you are a newbie, you may want to start learning the principles of basic punches. These are particularly useful to understand the best practices and formation when striking the heavy bag.
20-Minute Boxing Bag Workout Routine
The 20-minute heavy-bag workout is not an easy routine since it is intensive and exhausting.
Yet, it is an excellent way to improve your speed because it includes intervals and activities for training your muscles and losing weight.
This is an all-in-one routine that includes not only punches and simple combinations but also bodyweight exercises—perfect for boosting your endurance and burning fat.
What is the difference between a heavy-bag and speed-bag workout?
The heavy-bag workout develops your strength and allows to practice punches, combos and defense skills. This workout is beneficial when you want to improve your muscles, increase punching power, and boost resistance.
Meanwhile, a speed-bag workout uses a lightweight ball hanging on a special platform. It is useful for improving your eye-hand coordination and speed.
Nevertheless, both the heavy-bag and speed-bag cardio routine are excellent workouts to burn calories, release stress, and shape your shoulders.