This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Which punching dummy is best?

From novice to expert, all serious fighters can agree that a punching dummy is one of the best investments you can make that has long-term returns. No matter if you’re training for the fight of your life or in it for cardio, a dummy punching bag may be the ideal training partner. For example, the best human punching dummy, the Century B.O.B. Freestanding Training Dummy, lets you use your full speed and power without needing an actual partner.

What to know before you buy a punching dummy


The best punching body dummy for you depends on your needs. Freestanding heavy bags, for example, are the perfect instrument for martial arts. They’re durable enough to handle intensive elbow strikes, punches and throws. However, while easily transported, they come with the disadvantage of falling over often.

Sports such as MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu require more versatile punching dummies. These are ones with torsos to practice low kicks and ones that you can throw around. They are excellent tools to practice grappling and striking techniques on. However, they’re at a disadvantage when it comes to traditional boxing practices.


UFC Pro Ground and Pound Dummy

Design is an important mental factor when purchasing a punching dummy. Many people find that ones with a human resemblance help them visualize target areas to strike. The act of constant visualization makes it easier to put practice into action in real-life scenarios.

Like the UFC Pro Ground and Pound Dummy, some quality products on the market have zero human resemblance. However, they’re extremely versatile and cover a range of fighting techniques.


The best punching dummies offer a balanced resistance. They shouldn’t feel like you’re striking a concrete-filled bag nor feel like you’re training on a down pillow. Look for a punching dummy that has a balanced resistance.

The perfectly balanced punching dummy feels like something between hardwood and soft, absorbent materials. The perfect punching dummy feels as close to a real sparring partner as possible.

What to look for in a quality punching dummy


The external and internal material is vital to provide the best training experience. For example, grappling dummies come in leather or PU material. While leather is great, it can wear and crack after some use.

While a punching dummy made of silk and velvet feels nice, it has no benefit if it doesn’t fit your training requirements. For example, grapplers need a dummy that can handle strikes and takedowns without ripping apart after a few days.

Consider synthetic materials or high-quality leather for a more durable punching dummy. As for internal material, it’s best to use a filling that most resembles a human body. It shouldn’t be too soft, nor should it be too hard.

Height and weight

The height requirements of a punching dummy is a personal preference. You may want one that’s a little taller or something a bit shorter to best resembles your next opponent in the ring to help focus and hone your techniques.

If you use a punching dummy you can throw, consider how much weight you can handle without causing serious injury to yourself. It should be a balanced weight so you can strike with full power, as well as a weight you can control with takedown practices.

Punching dummies with a base should be heavy enough to punch and kick without falling over and causing severe injuries.


Regardless of finding the perfect balance of height and weight, a punching dummy needs to be stable. Quality punching dummies can stand still on their own no matter how hard you strike them. 

You may feel like Bruce Lee if you knock down a punching dummy with one strike. However, a sudden fall can cause multiple injuries that will force you to take a break from training.

How much you can expect to spend on a punching dummy

Depending on your needs, expect to spend $100-$400 for the best punching dummy.

Best punching dummy FAQ

Why should you use a punching dummy?

A. A punching dummy is the perfect tool that allows you to train with full speed and power. This lets you practice your techniques until they become muscle memory and part of your fighting style. Additionally, training on a punching dummy can help release endorphins, relieving stress after a rough day. 

Can you use the punching dummy indoors and outdoors?

A. Typically, most punching dummies can be used both indoors and outdoors. However, if your dummy is made of leather, it’s best not to use it outside when it’s raining or snowing. If you insist on training outside, find a bag cover to protect the dummy from damage.

What’s the best punching dummy to buy?

Top punching dummy

Century B.O.B. Freestanding Training Dummy

Century B.O.B. Freestanding Training Dummy

What you need to know: Century created the first life-like punching dummy for beginner and advanced fighters to practice on.

What you’ll love: It has an adjustable height for a more realistic practice session. The soft surface material provides a safety measure to help prevent injuries, while the internal material is firm enough to replicate a typical human body resistance.

What you should consider: It’s on the more expensive end of punching dummies.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

Top punching dummy for the money

Ring-to-Cage MMA Man-Shaped Dummy

Ring-to-Cage MMA Man-Shaped Dummy

What you need to know: This durable punching dummy is perfect for MMA fighters who want to practice targeted punches and other body strikes.

What you’ll love: It’s an all-in-one punching dummy for MMA fighters. It features a full-body design that hangs and turns a full 360-degrees to create a life-like practice session.

What you should consider: You must fill it up yourself.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Century B.O.B. XL

Century B.O.B. XL

What you need to know: This is Century’s extended version of its original B.O.B. model that has an extended torso and upper thigh.

What you’ll love: This dummy is perfect for those who practice instep and groin kicks as part of their fighting routine. The extension allows for a more stable base that can handle heavier hits. Similar to the original, it also features an adjustable height and soft outer layer.

What you should consider: It’s more costly than the original and other alternatives.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods


Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Christopher Lee writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.