Are Hand Weights Useful for Developing Punching Speed & Power?

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punching speed power hand weights

When I started beating my first heavy bag and get familiar with this type of workout a little bit, I began thinking about how to increase my punching power and hand speed.

I used to lift weights, and I thought if I did shadow boxing with hand weights my strikes would be more powerful and quicker. It is evident, isn’t it? The dumbbells will strengthen my arms, shoulders all the other muscles that are engaged. As a result, the punches will be stronger and swifter.

So, I started with 5 pounds dumbbells. Then I increased used 10-pound ones. I made 2-3 rounds of shadow boxing with hand weights for a few month. And I decreased the heavy bag workouts just to 1-2 rounds.

And, I developed, but not the way I wanted. I mean, I felt my muscles were stronger, but my punching power just did not get better. I was a bit let down because of this, and I did not understand reasons.

Finally, I took the time to dig myself into the topic, and to my surprise, I had to realize that using heavy weights is absolutely not recommended by experts to increase speed and power. (I wish I had taken the time to learn.)

Light hand weights 0.5-1 pound are OK to use, but not as a shortcut or a substitute for real practice. It is even OK if you do not use them all.

Recently, I bumped into an excellent video in which JT Van V is talking about the reasons why hands weights are not as beneficial as they seem to be and how to use them to get benefits. Watch it below, and you will understand whys.

Let’s Recap the Main Points

  • Use only light hand weights. (0.5-1 pound).
  • You may feel you can punch faster, but that does not mean your hands are quicker in reality.
  • Training with hand weight is not a substitute. You should do the typical workouts first such as heavy and speed bag training, sparring, etc.
  • It may help to get used to the weight of the gloves, though.
  • Don’t forget too much resistance will result in improper technique. And if that bad technique is done for a long time, it turns to a bad habit.

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