Any one who has watched a boxing movie knows about the speed bag-that little black bag that swings from a swivel. Speed bags, however, are not just for boxers. Any individual who participates in a sport that calls for "fast hands" can benefit from using this equipment. Following are some guidelines to follow when buying a speed bag.
Decide whether you want to buy a speed bag that is mounted or one that sits in a free-standing floor frame.
Assess the pros and cons of both styles. Bags that are mounted on a wall or platform are stable and stationary compared to free-standing models, which have greater mobility but are not as secure.
Know the various speed bag sizes that are available. Speed bags in the 11 x 8 inch to 14 x 9 inch range are recommended for beginners because of their manageability and reduced speed. Select the mid-size models (9 x 6 to 10 x 7 inch) if you are experienced. Opt for smaller bags (6.5 x 4, 7 x 4 and 8 x 5 inch) if you're more advanced, are lightning fast and have mastered the proper technique.
Select the right board for mounting your speed bag. Standard sizes range between two and three feet. Recommended models are those that allow you to adjust the height in proportion to the bag's user. Smaller models may require additional reinforcement, such as affixing a section of wood to the top of the platform.
Pick up a pair of hand wraps or bag gloves. These items are designed to shield your skin and knuckles and offer support.
Buy your speed bag online, at retail or sporting goods stores or through a local boxing gym. Take advantage of the employees' expertise. Ask them to recommend the best model for your fitness level and to explain how to use the various style bags.