What Heavy Bag Filling Material should you Use?

Sometimes we need to get an unfilled bag and need to fill it with suitable materials for ourselves. I know that many people prefer it because these are way more affordable. Also some people increase the weight of the bag as they get stronger. Even though only some filled bags allow it, ALL unfilled bags allow it.

Also some people can prefer having different striking experiences.

Some materials are just more common for filling the punching bag. And in this short content, I will walk you through about these materials, their features and which one can be better for your circumstance.

Let’s start with one of the most common heavy bag filling materials…

Shredded Clothes, Fabric

There are some materials which can even hurt the cover material of hanging heavy bags. And below you will see them. However What Heavy Bag Filling Material should you Usefabric is one of the safest materials for your bag and if you don’t add more weight than its capacity, then it definitely won’t cause any harm for your bag. It will provide incredible durability.

According to me this is the best material for bags in gym. I can only guess how long these bags can take constant punishment.

You can find some old clothes, shred these and then fill the bag with them. If you can’t find enough you can just go to garment factory and ask them.

After you fill the bag with clothes, its weight may be “light” for you. And if that happens, you can always remove some fabric and add some sand bags according to your preference.




You can fill the bags with water quite easily and you can do it very fast. With that water provides a unique feature. It gives the most “natural” striking feeling.

Of course if the cover material is really sturdy and thick, you won’t feel any difference from other filling materials. However if you train with genuine leather bag, you will feel huge difference and realize that water gives really smooth punching experience.



Sand can make the bags heavier than other materials and it is a great option for “heavy” people.

With that sand can ruin your workout. Because if inside of the bag has moisture, it can cause soft and hard spots. So you can’t get a good punching experience and it can even affect the rebound rate of it. Also if your boxing gloves don’t have a good wrist support, these hard spots can harm your wrist.

I really don’t like when these things happen. Firstly, I hate wrist injuries and secondly when a bag does not provide decent rebound rate, I just stop working out with it. Because that situation is simply not ideal for improving footwork skills properly.

With that you can’t know that a bag has hard spots or not, so your boxing gloves need to have premium wrist support. These pairs for heavy bag will secure your wrist very well and swing the bag more than regular pairs, so you can have an amazing session.

Of course there are some very quality bags and these wick moisture quite well and make sure that it won’t have any hard spots. So before you buy any punching bag, I strongly recommend you to check out the reviews of heavy bags from boxing sites and forums. It can make your life a lot easier.

is rice good for filling the punching bag


Shortly, rice can ruin your bag in a very short amount of time. Years ago lots of punching bag companies have something like “The bag can be filled with water, sand, rice…” in their description. However even they removed the rice from their description. So I highly recommend you to use other materials instead of rice.


What about Free Standing Punching Bags?

Whatever you choose, free standing bags tend to give same rebound rate, however if you want to have more resistance you can choose sand instead of water.

There are some really quality bags which give good rebound rate and their cover materials wick the moisture well so these won’t have any hard spots. If you are interested, then definitely check out these bags and their features. Some of them are unfilled and you can have an idea about their durability, exclusive features, warranty periods etc.

Each of these filling materials provides different experiences. A material can be perfect for someone however it can suck for another.

If you want extra durability from your bag, fabric is your best bet. I also know that many people just love having “natural striking experience” and if you are one of them you can use water for filling the bag. Also there are really big guys and water, fabric or other materials may not provide enough resistance for them. If you are in this category, you can fill your bag with sand.

I have not mentioned rubber mulch because I have never used it and I could not find any decent information online. However it is not used commonly so I guess it is not so good 🙂 However if you have any experiences with it or anything to share, please let me know in the comment section.


Media Courtesy of crustina, navcent via Creative Commons License, Some Rights Reserved
Spread the love

2 thoughts on “What Heavy Bag Filling Material should you Use?”

  1. Thanks for the informative article. My son is into MMA and used to wrestle in jr. high. I use to do a little boxing and wrestling years ago but never had the access to too much equipment. We had a sand-filled body bag ( I think it was sand-filled, felt like cement filled haha!) back when I was going over the local rec center in our neighborhood. Good article!…

    1. I guessed you filled it way too much. In that case, it can be dangerous for your wrist and knuckles. I am glad you did not have any injury.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *