The speed bag is maybe the coolest boxing equipment. If you have ever watched an experienced boxer “playing’ with the ball, it is fantastic how fast they can hit the ball with one hand or both. Not to mention the various tricks and the steady sound it makes.
But the speed punching bag is more than just a “toy” to play with. It is a very beneficial piece of equipment to boost the speed of the hands and your reaction which is vital not just in martial arts, but other sports as baseball, volleyball, tennis, table tennis, etc. And this is only one advantage of this simple yet effective equipment. Let’s see, what is a speed bag good for?
What are the speed bag benefits?
1. Better hand speed
Swift hands can help you in various ways. Firstly, it is harder for your opponent to defend your punches, but it also helps you to protect yourself from his attacks.
Besides, the faster your hands, the bigger your punching power is. A quicker hand with the same weight has more impact than a slower one. Therefore, in some cases, if you need to develop your punching power, it is better to improve the speed than the size of your arms with putting on more muscle mass.
Finally, your speed bag workout routine teaches you to hit the opponent at a constant power since you have to do the same with the ball. If you check a boxing match, you can see that the competitors do not throw only huge punches, but mainly small or middle ones in most of the time. (Throwing just massive hits would make them tired quickly leading to lack of defense and offense.)
2. Teaches you to keep your hands up
The most important thing you have to learn in boxing is the basic boxing guard. It is mainly about keeping your fists up in front of your face. That position is crucial since you can protect your head, but also start punches from an optimal state without wasting time.
A typical mistake of beginners is that they lower their arms because of lack of shoulder strength or merely because they “forget” it. This way, they “open” their defense and slows down their punches since time is needed to lift their arms up for jabs, straights, or crosses. (I know pros lower their weapons, mainly their jab one, but that is why they are professionals.)
When you work on it regularly, your shoulders get strong, and your mind learns to keep your fists in the proper position.
3. Eye-hand coordination and reaction time development
This equipment is a small and fast target, so you must concentrate to hit it. Typical speed bag sizes are just from 8×5 to 13×10 inches. By practicing, your punches will be more accurate, and your timing will be more accurate. This way you can target one particular area of the opponent better, and you are going to be more effective against a quick, “always-moving-here-and-there” fighter. Simply, you can find the best time to hit to a place where you want.
4. It improves your physique
It enhances your fitness in two ways.
What muscles does a speed bag work? You hit the bag with your arms up and always moving. This way it strengthens and tones all parts of your arms and shoulders. Hence, it might be a good solution for those girls and boys who want to shape their arms. It may help to get rid of arm fat as well.
Plus, it is intensive training with small yet fast moves, so it increases your heart rate. Hence, it is a good cardio activity that improves your endurance and burns calories. (Particularly, if you hit the bag for a long-term, 15-30 minutes).
5. Injury-free training
Compared to the heavy bag workout the potential to get an injury is far less. A heavy bag has a hard surface. A badly-performed punch or lack of hand protection can lead to serious hand injuries. Since, it is light, as it is filled with air, you will hardly get any injuries from it. (Maybe your fists will be red here and there, or just a little bruise if you hit it with bare hands.)
6. Great home exercise equipment
A speed bag platform does not cost so much, and you can quickly install it. It does not require so much space as well. This type of workout is “compatible” with other exercises like cardio or strength training.
7. Learn & get rid of stress
Hitting the speed ball, besides the physical benefits, helps to get rid of the daily stress. You can switch your brain off quickly because you will have no time to concentrate on anything else just the bag.
Finally, there are so many tricks you can learn. And, there is always a place to boost your speed, footwork, technique, rhythm, etc. You will always find some new skill to perfect.
To sum up
As you see the speed bag workout benefits are numerous. It helps to improve both your brain and body, and it is a fun way to exercise. Typically, we see fighters using this equipment, but it has a place in the life of an average person.