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Buying guide for Best double-end striking bags

The double-end striking bag is arguably the most versatile piece of equipment for boxers and mixed martial artists. It's also great for those who simply appreciate the exercise and stress-relieving benefits of hitting something!

However, when you look at the variety available — all the different sizes and mounting options — you'll soon realize that choosing the right double-end striking bag isn't straightforward. For those who need help deciding which to buy, we put together the following comprehensive shopping guide.

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The term “double-end” doesn't signify any particular size or shape. Rather, it pertains to the fact that the punching bag is attached to the ceiling and floor.

The benefits of a double-end striking bag

A speed bag is great for fast handwork. A heavy bag builds power and endurance. The problem is, that both of these are highly specific. The former is mounted up high; you work at or above head height with a speed bag. The latter has a more normal body position, but the weight and density of a heavy bag are a lot like hitting a brick wall; all you can really do is pound at it.

A double-end striking bag is fixed at shoulder height and held in place at the top and bottom. You can use it to practice combinations, counter-punching, kick speed, and so on. It offers a much more comprehensive training experience to serious boxers and martial artists, as well as to those who simply enjoy this form of exercise.

Types of double-end striking bags

A double-end striking bag can also be called a double-end punching bag, a double-ended dodge ball, or a crazy ball (perhaps in reference to the way it behaves when struck off-center). However, for all its different names, there are really only two types of double-end striking bag: the single and the two-in-one.

A single double-end striking bag is often a simple ball; sometimes the shape is elongated. This is the option to choose if you're developing speed and accuracy. If you don't hit it square, its movement can be erratic, much like an opponent. You can get in close and add dodging and weaving to your workout.

A two-in-one striking bag is usually two balls stacked on top of each other, so you have a head and body to aim at. You can take a boxing approach or combine handwork and footwork. While it doesn't move as quickly, most two-in-ones are still faster than a heavy punching bag. (The exception to this rule is a “heavy” punching bag designed specifically for increasing power.)

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Did you know?
Though synthetic leather is a cost-effective alternative to pricier striking bags, experts still recommend real leather for maximum durability.

Double-end striking bag considerations

Mounting options

There are two mounting options. For want of better expressions, we'll call them portable and fixed.

  • Portable: Fitting a punching bag permanently isn't always convenient at home, so some models come with a doorway kit. This includes a bar that locks in place near the top of the doorway and a heavy weight, or anchor, to fix the position at the bottom. This is a convenient, go-anywhere solution, but it does limit your movement while training. Because of size and weight, it's also not available with two-in-one punching bags.

  • Fixed: Fixed striking bags have a permanent attachment to the ceiling and floor. They can take more weight, and there's no fear of too much power knocking them loose. You can move around these bags however you want. A fixed double-end striking bag is considered the “pro” approach.

Material and stitching

Inexpensive double-end striking bags tend to be made of synthetic leather, also known as PU leather. When making real leather, part of the hide is normally discarded. Synthetic leather is made by taking this waste product and coating it in polyurethane. It's much less expensive to produce, but its wear characteristics are inferior. A synthetic leather bag is fine for occasional use, but it won't last long under constant punishment. If you're going to use your double-end striking bag on a daily basis, it's worth paying a little extra for real leather.

The stitching of your striking bag needs to be as secure as possible. Double or triple rows of nylon provide plenty of strength. Before you buy, check that the seams aren't raised. Raised seams could prove uncomfortable with regular hitting.

Ropes, bungees, and S-hooks

A double-end striking bag is held in place by a combination of ropes (usually nylon), bungee or elastic cords, and S-hooks. Adjustability is useful to compensate for differences in ceiling heights. It's important to note what is included with the product when ordering, since even the pricier models may not include all necessary components.

Quality of elastic is paramount. If it's weak, it will give a poor reaction to striking and will soon need to be replaced. It's not expensive to upgrade if you find that's the case, but it is frustrating. Conversely, if it's too strong — in other words, if you’ve got heavy bag elastic paired with a light bag — you won't get much feedback.


Size is not usually an issue with two-in-one bags because they're all fairly similar, but single bags can vary from four to nine inches in diameter. Small bags are great for precision and fasthand work, but if you're looking for all-round exercise, you'll want a larger model. A bigger bag is easier to hit and also marginally slower, so it's recommended for beginners.


Almost all single bags and most two-in-ones have one or two latex bladders inside which are inflated for use. These inflation points are usually, but not always, near the top. Avoid purchasing a double-end striking bag in which the inflation point is within the hitting area. Some cheaper bags have this configuration.

Double-end striking bag prices

There's little point in buying a cheap double-end striking bag. Poor materials and stitching mean it's just not going to stand up to the beating it's supposed to take.


That doesn't mean you have to spend a vast amount of money, however. If you want a double-end striking bag for general exercise (and stress relief), prices start around $25. High-quality models seldom exceed $60. Many people spend more than that on gym footwear.


Two-in-one double-end striking bags tend to cost a little more, but not much. Expect to spend between $60 and $100 for a good one.


Those from top brands can exceed $150, but unless you're a professional, you probably won’t see a need to spend that much.

"Cheap double-end striking bags are often criticized for poor elastic cords that wear too quickly, resulting in excessive stretch. Fortunately, good-quality alternatives are not expensive."


  • Your double-end striking bag must be perpendicular. When setting it up, fix the top mount first. Then, use a plumb line to accurately mark the position for the bottom fixing (or anchor).

  • When inflating, never use a compressor or garage air line. You risk splitting the bladder. Use a basic hand pump or a pump specifically designed for sports equipment.

  • Heavy double-end striking bags can weigh 45 pounds or more. Before you hang your bag, make sure there's sufficient overhead support — not just for the bag, but to allow for the forces that are generated when striking it.

  • If you want this type of striking bag but are concerned about having a permanent floor fixing, buy a heavy double-end bag anchor. The bag can then be moved out of the way when not needed.

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You don't need any experience to start using a double-end striking bag, but a little training at a local gym can help you learn the proper techniques that help you avoid common injuries.


Q. What's the difference between a double-end striking bag and a speed bag?

A. A speed bag is small and mounted at the top only. It's primarily used to improve hand speed and hand/eye coordination. Some double-end striking bags are a similar size, but many are larger. Double-end striking bags are designed for a much wider variety of punching and kicking practice.

Somewhat confusingly, you can get double-end speed bags. These are a hybrid of sorts. Before deciding what you want, think about the type of exercise you're looking for, and choose a shape and weight that suits your goals.

Q. Should I wear gloves when using a double-ended striking bag?

A. This is a personal choice. If you're using the bag for general exercise, hand wraps or light gloves are a good idea. If you're training for actual fights, then not wearing gloves will toughen your skin and build more muscle. That said, using full-weight boxing gloves would also help build arm strength.

The same principles apply to your feet when you're practicing kicks.

Q. What are double-end striking bags filled with?

A. It depends on the type. Smaller models are often inflated with air. Some are filled with water. Heavy bags might come pre-filled with sand, grain, or shredded rags. That can have quite an impact on shipping charges, so it's a good idea to check the cost when ordering.

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