The best boxing gloves for beginners are designed to protect not just your opponent’s head, but also your hands and wrists during bouts or when hitting the punch bag.
Since your hands are particularly easy to injure during boxing (unless you’re shadow boxing), you need gloves that fit well and provide excellent wrist support.
Boxing gloves are classified by weight, from 6oz up to 18oz and when choosing the best pair, you need to consider factors like durability, comfort, convenience, and whether they’re training or competition gloves.
We’ve reviewed 5 of the best boxing gloves suitable for beginners as well as intermediate users and included a buyers guide help you decide.
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How To Choose The Best Boxing Gloves For Beginners
There’s a huge variety of different types of boxing gloves on the market. The best gloves must protect your hand well, be comfortable to wear and convenient to put on and take off. Low quality gloves can irritate your hands before you’ve even punched a bag or leave you vulnerable to injury.
Some manufacturers classify gloves by size: i.e. small, medium, large. More often, though, gloves are classed by weight, ranging from 6oz to 18oz. The appropriate weight is determined by how you plan to use them, as well as by the size of your hands.
6oz and 8oz gloves are usually used for competitive fights while the bigger 18oz gloves are used for training on the heavy bags and for improving hand speed.
Beginners are usually advised to start with a 14oz or 16oz pair of gloves.
Most boxing gloves are made from either natural or synthetic leather:
- Natural leather is very hardwearing but tends to be a lot more expensive than its synthetic alternative.
- Synthetic leather, or PU leather, is not as durable so you may find that you need to replace synthetic leather gloves more often. However, synthetic leather gloves are cheaper. Good quality synthetic leather will last longer and feel more pliable.
Whatever gloves you choose, it’s always a good idea to wear hand wraps under them. These offer further protection to your hands and they can also ensure a tighter fit from loose-fitting gloves.
Some gloves include free hand wraps, otherwise you’ll need to buy them separately.
5 Best Boxing Gloves for Beginners
1. Venum Challenger 2.0 Boxing Gloves
Venum makes a lot of pairs of boxing gloves and the Challenger 2.0 gloves come in a good variety of designs and sizes, with the 14oz being especially good for beginners.
They have three layers of foam padding to protect the hands, making them suitable for bag work, and a breathable mesh liner allows air to circulate inside the gloves, preventing a big sweat build up. They are very well priced and the Velcro fastening is a decent quality that won’t break down after a few uses.
The only real negative about the Venum Challenger 2.0 gloves is that the interior lining can break down and flake away quite easily.
- Three layers of foam padding
- Good variety of sizes and designs
- Good price
- Lining can break down and flake
2. Sanabul Essential Gel Punching Bag Gloves
Sanabul Essential Gel Punching Bag Gloves are a set of beginner gloves that are ideal for the punching bag. Sizes range from 8oz to 16oz and come in a selection of colors, including an all-black design.
The material is gel infused which Sanabul claims soaks up the impact when punching the bag, and the palms have a mesh design that is breathable and prevents your hands from overheating while preventing excessive sweating.
The gloves are a really low price, so they are suitable even if you’re taking your first punches, while the quality of the gloves ensure that you won’t have to keep buying new pairs. The gloves are a bit wider, which is inconvenient for smaller hands, and the padding is a bit soft and spongey, but otherwise they represent great value for money.
- Strong wrist support
- Mesh palms
- A bit on the wide side
3. Venum Elite Boxing Gloves
Venum Elite Boxing Gloves are another pair of gloves from Venum that come in sizes from 8 to 16 ounces and in a good variety of colors and designs. They have three layers of foam for protection and include a mesh panel under the fist so your hands won’t sweat too heavily.
The fastening strap is really wide so they stay secure and give plenty of wrist support, and the thumb is fully attached to the body of the gloves, so there is no compromise in the integrity and strength of this area and the risk of thumb injury is minimized. They are very high quality but also expensive compared to most beginner boxing gloves.
- Choice of sizes and colors
- Triple-layer foam protection
- Fully connected thumb prevents injuries
4. Venum Contender Boxing Gloves
Venum Contender Boxing Gloves are Venum’s cheapest set of gloves and are best used for heavy bag work only. If, or when, you move to sparring and speed work, you’ll probably want to upgrade to a better quality and more expensive glove. However, these are really cheap and they have three layers of foam to protect the hands.
The thumb is fully attached, designed to prevent the thumb from twisting, but this does mean that the thumb area inside the glove is expansive so you might struggle to get a tight fit in this area. There’s also not much ventilation to speak of, apart from a few holes in the palm, so they can become uncomfortable after a decent bag session.
- Really cheap
- Three layers of foam protection
- Minimal ventilation
- Thumb area is too large
5. Ringside Apex Boxing Gloves
Ringside Apex Boxing Gloves are modestly priced gloves: a little more expensive than some, but certainly not pro prices. They come in small or medium, rather than weight sizes, and are designed for punch bag routines and workouts. They have a tapered wrist design for a more secure fit and Ringside claim that the synthetic material is easy to wash and maintain. A breathable mesh section on the palm of the hand allows air to circulate and keeps your hands cool during use.
While the gloves offer reasonable protection, thanks to a gel infusion, they are seemingly designed for lighter work so they won’t progress through your boxing career with you, but are a good option for regular boxing workouts.
- Decent padding for protection
- Tapered wrist design is comfortable
- Material is easy to maintain
- Minimal sizing choice
- Better suited to workouts than heavy boxing
Verdict – What Are The Best Beginners Boxing Gloves?
If you’re buying your first set of boxing gloves, you really don’t need to spend a fortune, but you do need to ensure good protection and durability. The beginner gloves above are suitable for bag work and for those that are new to the boxing world.
14oz and 16oz boxing gloves tend to be the best for beginners because they’re good all-rounders. They’ll protect your hands through all forms of training and still offer decent flexibility and durability.
We found Venum Challenger 2.0 gloves to be the best all round option because of their excellent padding, support and breathability.
For a cheaper alternative, the Sanabul Essential Gel Punching Gloves offer excellent quality at an amazing price.
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Check out our guide to using resistance bands for boxing to develop speed and power.
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