The most essential martial arts training gear is?
Purists might argue that you don’t really need equipment for martial arts training, but most people see the need for and value of some gear. Depending on the art you practise, training gear may be essential.
The following are some of the most popular items of equipment for martial arts training.
If you train in judo, aikido, or any art involving throws or groundwork, you need some kind of mats. Jigsaw mats are a great option, as they can be transported easily and you can fit them together to suit the shape and size of your training room. Interlocking Jigsaw mats are made from high density foam, and are hard wearing and long lasting. They come in thicknesses ranging from 20mm to 40mm, with the thicker mats being particularly suited for throwing arts. Jigsaw mats are also great for arts like karate where you spend most of the time on your feet, and can reduce the risk of injury during knockdowns. They are easy to wipe clean, and you can use different colours to designate different zones for training.
Wavemaster Punch Bags
Punch bags are a common sight in gyms and dojos around the world, and they are fantastic for training in boxing and a wide variety of martial arts. Wavemaster punch bags are one of the market leaders, and they come in a wide range to suit different styles of training. Punch bags come in all shapes and sizes, and you need to think about where you will use it and the type of training you’ll do with it when choosing one. Hanging punch bags are great for heavy bag work and practising upper cuts, but you need a sturdy beam or place to attach them. Free standing bags are more flexible, and you can drag them into a corner when you aren’t training with them.
Wavemaster punch bags can cost a little more than some, but you get what you pay for in terms of quality. Cheaper vinyl coverings show signs of wear and tear very quickly, so don’t compromise if you want a bag that will last.
Body Opponent Punch Bags – or ‘BOBs’ – are also great for martial arts training. Shaped like a human torso and head, a BOB is great for practising strikes to target areas. When the base is filled with water or sand, a BOB will take a serious pounding.
Whatever martial art you train in, you’re going to need some sparring equipment at some point. Gum shields – or mouth guards – are essential if you’re training in a full contact style. Head guards can literally be a life saver, and are recommended if you’re into hardcore pounding! Don’t be all macho about it – losing a tooth or taking a hard blow to the head isn’t worth it for the sake of wearing some sensible safety protection. Sparring gloves and shin guards are also recommended for some arts, and chest protectors are commonly used in Taekwondo. You may also want to protect the family jewels with a groin guard.
We’ve all heard stories of martial artists training on wooden floors, breaking boards and bricks on a daily basis and wearing no protection for full contact sparring, but these guys pick up injuries and often regret it when their training career is cut short. If you want to stay fit, healthy and safe, invest in some good quality martial arts training gear.