What do you fill a punching bag with?

Have you bought an empty punching bag? From this guide, you will learn how to fill it properly and in various ways to get a bag for the home that will be comfortable and safe for training.

When I purchased mine I thought I only need to throw some clothes into it and it is ready to use, but it is far from that. A poorly filled heavy punching bag gives an awful user experience plus it can be dangerous to your knuckles and wrist. Also, it does not swing suitably which is essential as well.

Typically, the biggest problem with a badly-filled bag is that the filling sinks to the bottom. This way the top will be soft and the bottom rock-hard. Hence, you cannot place punches correctly on it, and the bottom will kill your knuckles.

Furthermore, a too softly filled punching bag will not provide correct resistance, while a too hard one might cause injuries in your wrist and knuckles.

There are four types of heavy bag filling you can use: old clothes, sand, sawdust or you can buy special filling. You can also combine them.

Here we are only talking about the no-cost methods.

The Sawdust filling

For this method, you will need a few pieces of old clothes, a sturdy rubble sack, and sawdust depending on the sizes of your heavy bag.

Firstly, place the clothes into the bottom of the bag tightly maximum to 1/3 of the bag. Then, put the rubble sack and start filling it with the sawdust until it reached the sides of the heavy bag. If it is required use more than one rubble sacks to fill it entirely. And don’t forget to tightly close the mouth of the rubble sack(s). Do not put sawdust directly into the heavy bag.

With this method, you can get a punching bag that is not so hard and heavy.

Clothes Filling

For this method, you will only need old clothes. It is important to place the pieces of clothes very tightly with each other. There should not be empty places, so the best is if you fold them before. If the clothes sink, add more clothes into the bag.

Even if you use clothes for this filling, if you do it right, you are going to have a medium-heavy and hard equipment.

Sand filling for additional weight

The sand filling does not mean we fill the entire bag with sand. It would be hefty and hard. And I think no model in the world can handle such a huge weight.

Instead, we use it for making it heavier and more solid. From the following video, you will learn how to fill a heavy bag correctly to get a classic heavy bag that has a perfect shape and structure.


If you ask me the best is if you fill a punching bag with all the three materials above. This way you can have a heavy punching bag that will suit your need. If you require more weight and hardness use more sand. In case you need lighter equipment then use more sawdust. And, if it is necessary, refill it regularly. In case you need equipment for kicks, then it is better to choose one from the standing punching bags.


Hi there, I'm Imre. I started boxing when I was 15, but nowadays I hit my old, dirty heavy bag at home (you know, family, business, etc.) I love boxing so much, so I made this blog to help people get started with it (at home).

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