Training with boxing focus pads and gloves is one of the most important parts of training as having good hands and strong punches are the fundamentals of most combat sports and martial arts. Focus pads or hook and jab pads are an essential tool for any boxing, kickboxing and MMA gym.

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What are boxing focus pads and how do you use them?

Boxing focus pads come in pairs and are made from either genuine leather or synthetic leather materials filled with an absorbing padding and are slightly bigger than a hand. Each hand is inserted to the back of the pad in a fixed glove and secured by a velcro wrist strap. The front of the pad come in either a flat or slightly curved design.

Boxing focus pads are used by a pad holder to help improve the strikers punches. Focus pads are used for practicing accuracy, power and speed of punches. They are also used for punching combinations and drills of punches as well as simulating sparring defense like slipping and countering. They are smaller and more compact than traditional Muay Thai pads as they are to solely to focus on punches to allow faster punching.

They can still be used in kickboxing and MMA classes but they are used more for speed, especially if they are going to be kicked.

To use boxing focus pads correctly it is important the pad holder is just as experienced as the person hitting as it involves speedy timing to allow the punches to land correctly. In any boxing or kickboxing class your coach should guide you through how to use them properly.

Tip: While using the focus pads make sure you punch the same hand of the pad holder. For instance, the left jab should hit the left hand of the pad holder.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a trainer or a coach just yet, you can still use them at home and get a friend to be the pad holder for you. Although it will not be as effective, you can still get a pretty good workout. When you go to buy you focus make sure you buy both boxing focus pads and gloves to protect your hands and for the pads to last longer.

Focus pads are built to withstand endless of hours of fast and hard punches, so it is important to always buy the best quality of focus pads to get the most out of your training. Their purpose is to withstand plenty of punishment while protecting the holder to maximise training and improve punches.

What are the different types of focus pads?

Focus pads come in a wide range of different sizes and designs to suit the styles different training.

  • Straight focus pad – A flat style for a larger striking area.
  • Curved focus pad – A curved design is good for catching strikes.
  • Micro mitt focus pad – The micro mitts are the smallest in design to improve accuracy and generally are for more professional use.
  • Hybrid focus pad – A hybrid focus pad which is a cross between kick pads and focus mitts, these hybrid mitts combine the thickness and target area of a small pair of curved Thai pads with the hand compartment and functionality of regular focus mitts.

Should i buy leather or synthetic leather focus pads?

Depending what the pads will be used for will determine which type of focus pads will suit you best. If you are just using them at home not so often than a synthetic style will be fine, but if you own a club and they are to be used often than a more durable leather pad will be more substantial.

To learn more about the different materials used in boxing read our article ‘Leather vs faux leather: which is better?’ here.