To choose Muay Thai gloves that will best support your training and performance, consider glove materials (such as full grain leather, KEVLAR®, etc), size/weight, and your own aesthetic preferences. In this article, we’ll go in-depth about how to choose Muay Thai gloves so that you can perform at your best and feel confident!
If you’re new to Muay Thai, understanding the differences between Muay Thai gloves and other MMA gloves is step one to choosing Muay Thai gloves.
Keep in mind that, unlike some other MMA forms, Muay Thai involves kicking, grabbing, and blocking in addition to punching. That means that Muay Thai-specific gloves will offer more flexibility than boxing gloves.
Muay Thai gloves offer more flexibility to allow for clinching and grabbing or catching kicks. Boxing gloves have more rigid padding that offers greater protection but restricts movement during sparring or training sessions.
When considering what Muay Thai gloves to buy, know that investing in quality materials is key for ensuring longevity and resiliency. When choosing Muay Thai gloves, prioritize gloves that will withstand intense training and offer optimal performance. In addition, high-quality leather is also beautiful and one-of-a-kind.
For those who expect the best in their gear, choosing Muay Thai gloves made from high-quality materials will provide superior protection, maximum performance, and longevity through countless rounds of heavy bag training, sparring, fights, and everything in between. Not to mention, high-quality Muay Thai gloves (such as CORBETTI gloves) embody timeless style and quality that turns heads.
Understanding the types of leather available will help you choose the best Muay Thai gloves possible. We’ll showcase different types of leather below, from the highest quality to the lowest quality:
Full-Grain Leather – Beautiful and High Quality
If you’re looking for the highest quality leather, full-grain leather is for you. Unlike top grain Leather which is sanded and buffed to eliminate scars and markings, full grain leather retains the beautiful, natural grain and markings. There are a lot of variations within the realm of full-grain leather. For example, CORBETTI gloves take full-grain leather a step further by selecting beautiful full-grain leather with the least scars.
Top-Grain Leather – Refined and Modified Full-Grain Leather
full-grain leather retains its natural grain from the hide, top-grain leather is sanded and buffed to remove any scars or markings, resulting in a more uniform look. While top-grain leather isn’t considered as high quality as full-grain, it is still a quality material and a viable option when choosing Muay Thai gloves.
Split Leather or “Genuine Leather” – Lower Quality
When shopping around and thinking about what Muay Thai gloves to buy, don’t be fooled by the appealing sound of “genuine leather.” Split leather and genuine leather eliminate the “grain” layer, including only the top layers and an overall lower-quality product. “Genuine” leather is a lower-quality version of split leather.
Bonded Leather – Lowest Quality
Bonded leather is the lowest quality of leather and is not real leather. It’s made of shredded leather scraps that are bonded together with filler and plastic materials – essentially a cheap imitation of true, real leather. If you’re looking for genuine quality when choosing your Muay Thai gloves, it’s best to avoid bonded leather altogether!
A Visual Representation of the Different Leather Types
When thinking about what Muay Thai gloves to buy, don’t underestimate the effect that thread construction has on the performance of a glove! Cotton, polyester, and nylon bonded or unbonded threads are used in gloves at different levels of quality – with higher-end gloves usually using bonded nylon for their strength and durability, not to mention their beauty.
The reason that the thread choice is important is that a high-quality glove must feature a thread that won’t stretch and break under heavy pressure. This is why CORBETTI’s engineers chose KEVLAR®. It’s 2.5 times stronger, 13 times less stretchy, and almost twice as heat resistant than the best available Nylon thread on the market – providing the ultimate peak performance for any Muay Thai fighter.
Inarguably, the most important part of the glove is the padding. When choosing Muay Thai gloves, it is well worth your time to look into the padding construction of the glove. After all, your hands are your most important weapon. Protecting them (and protecting your sparring partners and opponents) should be a very high priority.
There is a wide range of materials and options available in Muay Thai glove padding. Natural latex, synthetic latex, polymer resin-based foams (like EVA or PEVA), and more – all are used in combination with each other to create the perfect balance that offers the best protection possible while also providing comfort and responsiveness during training.
It truly is a science. It takes much study and laboratory analysis to produce the ideal foam mold that can stand up to the rigorous demands of Muay Thai – but when it’s done right, your hands and sparring partners will thank you!
When it comes to figuring out what Muay Thai gloves to buy, one of the primary factors is body weight. The lower your body weight, the lower ounce or lower weight glove you’d consider. Learn more here about what weight gloves to get for Muay Thai.
But body weight alone isn’t always the primary factor in choosing Muay Thai glove. The intended purpose can make a difference – for example, if you’re using it for speed work such as pads and punching heavy bags, most people prefer using a lighter glove, like a 10oz glove. On the other hand, when it comes to sparring, it’s best to use the heaviest glove possible to protect not only your own hands but your training partner as well. While lighter gloves may feel better in use, they can also be more punishing on your opponent!
For this reason, most serious Muay Thai athletes will have two to four gloves to use in different scenarios.
As mentioned above, Muay Thai athletes often have two to four pairs of gloves for different purposes. Sparring gloves are usually the heaviest an athlete will use, and lighter gloves will be used for speed work and bag work. An athlete will typically use their lightest gloves for fights. An athlete can easily have three pairs of gloves for those occasions: sparring gloves, speed/bag gloves, and competition gloves.
While choosing the best materials and construction for your next pair of Muay Thai gloves is extremely important, don’t forget to take into account your own design and aesthetic preferences. Performing well is a priority, but looking good is a close second.
In addition to color and finish, full-grain leather and top-grain leather will have a higher quality, refined appearance. Attention to other details can make a significant difference in your confidence as well.
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