You’ll regularly hear me announce in class ‘If you’ve got them, get your bag gloves on’.

This isn’t done for effect, it’s done because I know only too well how much damage you can do to your joints from ‘high impact’ training… and nothing is more high impact than training in a combat sport.

I know in our youth we all believe we are indestructible.  We think ‘those things’ will never happen to us, but trust me, many years of punching and kicking with any amount of power and with no protection WILL eventually take its toll on your joints.

Imagine constantly running barefoot on the hard streets.  We would NEVER do it. We know that the constant impact of your feet striking the concrete would cause us some serious damage.  It’s exactly the same when we punch bare knuckle.

My advice to all of you is to protect those joints.

ALWAYS ensure you wear a pair of bag gloves when you punch… and DON’T wear boxing gloves (or worse, MMA gloves) as these are designed to protect the person you are hitting more than they are designed to protect you.  A bag glove is solely designed to protect you. It is designed differently with a much tougher exterior to help absorb impact.  You’ll also wear your boxing gloves out much quicker if you use them to hit pads or punchbags with as you’ll break down the padding inside.

Also, ensure you wear proper martial art training shoes and not jogging (or fashion) training shoes.  Martial art training shoes are designed to assist your movement and cushion your joints when kicking.  Jogging shoes will stick to the floor greatly increasing the risk of injury to the knees, and the raised heel also increases the risk of injury, especially where ankles are concerned.  There is also a high risk of injury to the instep when kicking due to the laces on a jogging shoe.

Good quality martial arts shoes mimic the foot, offer little resistance allowing the feet to twist and glide naturally (some even have swivel pads built in) and there are no exposed laces.  Just be aware that there are a number of ‘fashion’ trainers that look like martial art shoes, so if you are in any doubt, drop me an e-mail, give me a call or grab me in class (and keep the receipt for anything you buy).

And my last piece of advice is to buy the most expensive pair of bag gloves (and martial art shoes) you can afford.  Don’t skimp on price as it’s your joint health you’re protecting here and you really do get what you pay for.

For further advice or to purchase bag gloves and martial arts shoes speak to a staff member down at class.