How to Use a 40 Pound Punching Bag

How to Use a 40 Pound Punching Bag

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A 40-pound punching bag allows you to practice your boxing fundamentals.

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Hitting a punching bag is a key part of any boxer's training, but if you don't plan on stepping into the ring any time soon, this workout could still benefit you. Whether you have finely tuned fundamentals or just enjoy slugging the bag after a particularly frustrating workday, a 40-pound bag provides a lightweight alternative to traditional bags, making it convenient for use in your basement or garage.


Stand a couple feet away from the bag in your boxing stance. If you're familiar with the sport, your stance will come naturally, but if you're new to this type of workout, learning the correct stance is important. If you're right handed, stand with your left foot slightly forward and your upper body turned to about 1 o'clock. Raise your fists into a guard position, with your right fist lightly pressed against the right side of your jaw and your left fist a couple inches higher and slightly away from your face. Left-handed people should reverse this stance, placing their right foot and hand forward.


Throw a jab toward the bag by taking a slight step forward with your left foot as you extend your left hand. Keep the punch on a horizontal plane and quickly return it to your guard after it makes contact with the bag. A common approach is to visualize punching "though" the bag. To do so, you might need to move slightly closer to the bag.


Incorporate a variety of punches into your heavy bag workout. Trained boxers use the heavy bag to practice their striking, while beginners can just use this workout to burn off some steam. Beyond jabs, essential punches include straights, crosses and hooks, all of which you can throw high or low. Despite the uppercut's usefulness in the ring, it's not an ideal punch to practice on the heavy bag.


Move continuously as you throw punches at the bag. Step your left foot forward when you throw your left hand and your right foot forward when you throw your right hand. Always position your feet no wider than a step beyond your original boxing stance -- in the ring, wide foot placement throws you off balance. Move around the bag as you throw punches and, occasionally, take a peek at your feet to ensure your stance is still correct.

Things Needed

  • Hand wraps
  • Bag gloves


  • Hit the bag for three minutes and then take a 60-second break. Repeat this pattern to create an up-tempo workout.
  • If you find the 40-pound bag swings excessively, hook a bungee cord through the metal ring on the bottom of the bag and tie the other end of the cord to a heavy object, such as a heavy dumbbell or weight plate.


  • Always protect your hands with hand wraps and bag gloves before you attempt to hit the heavy bag. Wraps and gloves are crucial to protecting the bones and joints in your hands and wrists.

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