Nothing feels worse than using a pair of boxing gloves that don’t fit your hands. It causes discomfort, injuries, and an overall lousy training experience.
Boxing gloves should fit snugly without discomfort. Most gloves will always have some room between your hand and the glove, needing to add hand wraps to fill up any dead space.
In this article, I’ll tell you more about how to know when a glove is bad or good for your hands and answer many other common questions – so strap up.
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Perfect fit for boxing gloves
You can’t just eye a pair of gloves and immediately know it’s a perfect fit.
You need to have a good feel by putting it on. To help you check the boxes, I’ve prepared some green flags you should look out for.
A snug fit feeling is when the boxing gloves are not too tight, yet not too loose. It fits perfectly with your hand without feeling discomfort throughout the training session.
My favorite gloves to bring to the gym are the ones that feel like butter when I put them on. The ones which I don’t even notice I’m wearing because they’re just right.
But you need to know when the gloves are too snug. You’re looking for a tight enough fit to keep your hand in place but not so much that you lose blood flow.
Heads up: The favorite pair of gloves I’ve tried so far that give the best snug fit with incredible wrist protection is the Hayabusa T3:
For more great options, you might want to check out my article about the best boxing glove for wrist support.
Feels comfortable with hand wraps on
Some gloves fit well without hand wraps. And some gloves need you to wear hand wraps to achieve a snug fit.
If your gloves are already snug without the wraps, it means it’s too tight for your hands because you’ll normally need to wear hand wraps.
To make sure you’ll buy the right pair. Before you go to the store, take your (clean) hand wraps with you and try them both on at the same time.
This way, you’ll have a better idea of whether these gloves will fit you perfectly.
Wearing them feels natural
The perfect boxing gloves should feel like it merges with your skin when worn. They should feel the right weight where you can move naturally.
Some gloves are too heavy that you’ll feel like swinging a boulder. And some are too light that it doesn’t give enough protection.
It’s challenging to find a glove like this on your first buy. I know it’s easier said than done, but don’t buy the first good-looking pair of gloves you see in the store. Take the time to try them on and throw a few shadow combinations.
Common signs of a bad boxing glove fit
Sometimes, red flags are difficult to notice, especially if you have no idea what they are. I’ve listed examples of what you should watch out for below.
Injuries don’t need to be career-ending to be considered real injuries. If you feel discomfort or pain while using your gloves, you should consider switching to a different pair.
Very tight boxing gloves will restrain your fist more than it needs. This will cause numbness, tingling, or friction.
For example, hitting the bag hard with a boxing glove that’s too tight could mean you’re absorbing too much of the impact into your bones.
If you frequently work on heavy bags, be sure to buy gloves for the heavy bag so you’ve got the right level of impact absorption.
Hands are overly sweaty inside the glove
Overly sweaty hands mean that your gloves don’t have enough ventilation.
If the gloves are too tight and are pressing too much on your fist, it may lower the airflow inside the boxing gloves.
Low airflow will cause too much sweating, which may lead to an uncomfortable training experience.
To save yourself money from buying low-ventilated gloves, make sure to buy from trusted brands and also try them on before going to the cashier.
Too much space
You need space for your hand to breathe inside the gloves, but too much is no good either. If this is the case, your gloves will feel very detached while using them.
A sign that your boxing gloves have too much space is when it’s too easy to wear. We’re looking for a smooth slide with a bit of resistance, but if it’s oddly easy to put on, there’s something wrong.
A loose boxing glove might constantly move around and distract you inside the ring.
Wearing a boxing glove with too much space is like wearing a size-13 shoe despite having a size-9 foot. You might be able to wear it, but it doesn’t make it much useful for walking in.
Too much space means that your hand is not connected to the gloves properly. This can decrease the protection you can get while using it.
The ligaments at the back of the knuckle are severely at risk in a loose glove. Even if you have extra layers of hand wraps to make the fit, it’ll not be enough for shock absorption and overall hand support.
Tips for picking a perfectly fitted glove
Now that you know how to differentiate good boxing gloves from bad ones, you’re a step closer to your goal. It’s time for you to pick. Below are some tips I think you should keep in mind.
Don’t be shy to try every size
Don’t rush it when choosing your gloves. Try on every possible option to have an idea of what fits great and what does not.
Most beginner boxers might feel shy when they go boxing-gear shopping, especially if they get picky about the style.
All boxing gloves are different. Each pair offers a different feeling based on your hand size.
Your friend might tell you that he bought a glove that fits perfectly for him. But it feels horrendous when you try it on because your hands are a different size or shape.
That’s why it’s important to try different sizes to avoid being misled and to assess the boxing glove by yourself and not rely too much on the comments of others.
Measure your hand size
Measuring your hand size can help pick out the right glove because certain glove sizes (or weights) can be better depending on your hand size.
Here’s a boxing glove hand circumference sizing guide I’ve put together to help you:
|Hand circumference||8 oz gloves||10 oz gloves||12 oz gloves||14 oz gloves||16 oz gloves||18 oz gloves|
|5.5” – 6”||✔|
|6” – 7½”||✔||✔|
|7½” – 8½”||✔||✔|
|8½” – 9½”||✔|
|9½” & above||✔||✔|
Note that every boxing glove brand could be different from this, but it gives a good general guide.
Some high-end brands offer a sizing chart similar to the above with their own specific hand circumference measurements, which you can use to get even better accuracy.
All you need is a cloth/fabric tape measure and the size chart of your chosen brand, and then you can begin measuring.
To measure your hand circumference, wrap the tape measure around the widest part of your hand, over both sides. The widest part is usually just below the knuckles but not around the thumb.
For your hand length, start from the tip of your middle finger down to the area where your palm and wrist meet.
Common questions about boxing gloves fit
Sometimes, you’ll still have questions about getting the right fit for boxing gloves.
Below are some frequently asked questions by fellow martial artists like you.
How tight should boxing gloves be?
A boxing glove should be tight enough to hold your fist in place before, during, and after the training session. The gloves shouldn’t be too tight to be comfortable enough to provide ventilation for the hands.
How do you know if your boxing gloves are too big?
Your boxing gloves are too big if it’s too easy to put your hand in, and you can move your fist around too freely while wearing them.
For kids, boxing gloves are too big if it feels heavy for their body size. Sometimes, heavier gloves are harder to swing for the little ones.
Final thoughts on boxing gloves fit
Getting your gloves to be the perfect size for your hands is a tricky business.
No one glove is the same because each brand has its own manufacturing methods and molds they form their glove around. And this template rarely changes between their glove options, either.
Make sure you understand your own weight, the purpose of your training, and your hand size. Then test out gloves as much as you can to get the one that’s right for you.
What to read next
Now that you have a good overview of how to pick out the best fit for boxing gloves, it’s time to consider your glove options. Lucky for you, I’ve covered some of the best picks already: