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How To Break In Boxing Gloves

You recently purchased a brand-new set of gloves that smell like fresh leather. Your skin feels soft against the interior lining. Even without hand wraps, they feel a little tight when you put them on. So you bring them to your next workout, are buzzing to utilise them and start bashing into the pads and hitting the heavy bag. And before you know it, your fingers are numb, your knuckles hurt, and you're regretting your enthusiasm. The gloves are fresh, so there isn't a problem.

Purchase some hand wraps and wrap them around your hands before donning the gloves if you need a quick remedy. Spend some time wrapping your hands in the wraps to make sure they are sufficiently tight to provide the best possible protection. Any leather that is stiff or has dried up after sitting unused for a long time may be helped to soften up by this!

The majority of synthetic gloves can usually be used immediately; they could be a little stiff at first, but you can usually get used to that after the first session. However, leather gloves are unique. They frequently take longer to get entirely comfortable because they typically start off firmer and may have higher-quality padding.

All you need to do is gently stretch the glove, do some light pad and bag work for a few sessions (how often you train is going to alter how long this takes), and your gloves should be nice and comfortable, ready to use them for regular training.


Don't go too tight – your gloves should be snug but don't buy gloves that will cut off circulation. Consider that your hands may swell as your work up a sweat. Gloves that are very tight when you try them on may become too tight while training. Gloves that are too big could be prone to falling off.


When putting the glove on, make sure you push your hand as far in as possible. It's okay if the tips of your fingers are touching or gently pushing against the end. Also, make sure you're clenching your hand into a fist when punching, which should help a bit with the knuckle positioning.


For average weight fighters, a good combination is a pair of 16 oz for sparring, 8 oz for drills and pad work, and bag gloves. 16 or 18 oz gloves for heavier boxes, 10 or 12 for bag/pads/drills, and thick bag gloves. Some people use 16's for sparring and bag work, so it's best to have 2 pairs.


If you notice that the leather or material around the knuckle is cracking or showing an excessive amount of wear, replace them sooner for safer contact. You should always feel at least 1.5-2" of padding across the knuckle. With additional wear and contact, the foam will break down more quickly and should be replaced.


How To Break In New Boxing Gloves 

There are things you can do to cut the time down, and there are things you shouldn't. Find a summary of our study on the topic below.

Step 1

The actions listed below should be followed in order to break in new boxing gloves.

To properly break in boxing gloves, first squeeze and press down on the gloves. Make sure to do this softly. The foam padding on the gloves will get softer when you press and squeeze the material. Use both of your hands to do this for at least two to three minutes on each glove. Wear gloves after that and continue to move your hands. While wearing your gloves for an additional two to three minutes, you should also gently stretch your hands.

Additionally, some advise sitting on a pair of boxing gloves. This makes it easier for you to squeeze the gloves and break them in. However, doing so can potentially harm the boxing glove's wrist region.

Step 2

Starting light training on a heavy bag or concentration mitts will be the next phase. Consider skipping this step if you are breaking in a new set of sparring gloves. If your sparring gloves are mostly used against other people, hitting a heavy bag with them over time may cause the padding to become dangerously hard. However, there is nothing wrong with breaking the training gloves in the bag if you are using them. Don't throw too hard; concentrate on volume instead. It would be best if you didn't hit too hard when breaking in boxing gloves because they are less protective than usual. When punching with brand-new gloves, many people complain of knuckle pain, bruising, and scraping.

Step 3

Utilizing longhand wraps is the last step to properly breaking in your boxing gloves. Boxers can tightly wrap their hands since longer hand wraps typically have more cloth. The boxers are additionally protected by doing this. When the boxing gloves are brand-new, your hands are more susceptible and at risk, increasing your chance of getting bruises and scrapes. Longer hand wraps will make it simpler for the boxer to break in the gloves.

The extra volume inside the glove will also aid the boxer in stretching out his or her gloves.

Tips For How To Break In Boxing Gloves

Wrap Your Hands two times

It's crucial for your safety to wear boxing hand wraps because your punches will put more pressure on the padding of the glove. Additionally, this will speed up the break-in process as the pressure is raised.

If it is not too tight after wearing a pair, you can wrap your hands twice. You needn't repeat it, though, if your pair fits snugly.

Gently move and squeeze the glove.

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Although it's crucial to avoid overdoing it, this is probably the first step towards disassembling the gloves. Make a fist and repeatedly stretch your fingers while wearing one glove. Next, press the padding surrounding your fist into your knuckles with the other hand. This will begin reducing the stiffness of the gloves, but be careful not to overdo it since if the foam padding is damaged, it could reduce the durability of the glove.

Use Regularly

The material used in Pair is designed to maintain its condition. The break-in period may extend if you don't use them frequently. I discovered that the break-in period for the Cleto Reyes pair was 7 months when I used them twice weekly. However, the identical training gloves were used by the trainers in my new gym 3–4 times per week. Additionally, there was a break-in time of 4-5 months. Regular use will therefore cut the time down.

Additionally, a lot of individuals believe that heavy bag training might cut down on time. And it offers a shorter term and is better. However, the padding in the pair will have an effect, and the break-in period will be decreased as long as you punch anything, including pads and a double-end bag.

Hit the pads (lightly!)

Since you'll be hitting things with the gloves, hitting things makes sense as the best way to break them in. The problem will arise if you go all out and punch like you did with an old, worn-out glove. Go at 50% and let the leather and padding in the glove flex and adjust. Although it could take a few sessions before you can increase the power, safeguarding your hands is worthwhile.

Go with Synthetic Leather Pairs

Synthetic leather gloves are an option if you don't like lengthy break-in times. Has there been a break-in? Of them, some have. It typically costs far less than genuine leather, though. Also, stay away from handmade pairs if you dislike break-in times. These can make patience difficult. It can even take seven months to complete.

Important Note: Boxing gloves' fronts shouldn't be opened and closed. It may have an impact on the padding, and if you do it frequently, the pair's cushioning quality may decline, and its durability may be shortened. The cushioning is not intended to stretch; it is created to absorb impacts.

Hit a punching bag

The primary point at which disagreements between people begin to appear is here. People sometimes claim in forums that striking heavy bags causes a set of gloves' padding to become denser and harder. Therefore, if you have a set of gloves for sparring, I wouldn't recommend working on really heavy bags repeatedly.

However, a wonderful approach to break-in gloves is to use lighter punch bags, double-end bags, or other bags for a few rounds. The bags will also be helpful if you want to push yourself during your session, which you should do with well-broken-in gloves. However, you can use the bags at the end of your session to break in new gloves until they are cosy enough to wear on a daily basis. At the end of the day, you've brought a poor pair of gloves if the padding on your gloves compresses and hardens after a few sessions on the bag.

Below is an outline of how I recommend breaking in boxing gloves:

  • Put on your new boxing gloves, then wrap them around a sturdy object at eye level, like the back of a chair or a pole.
  • Tape-wrap one hand or both if you're feeling daring.
  • As a warm-up, begin with some simple contact activities like pushups, shadowboxing, and jump rope.
  • Once you're free, use your boxing gloves that are still wrapped to work out any kinks on the heavy bag. Before performing any power drills, such as hooking, uppercutting, and combo drills, I advise striking the heavy bag about 10 to 15 times.
  • Unwrap your brand-new boxing gloves once this procedure is finished and you feel comfortable utilising them. It shouldn't take more than 20 minutes to complete the process every other day for roughly three weeks.

Should You Use Boxing Gloves with Long Break in Time?

You will have a fantastic punching experience for a very long period if you utilise Cleto Reyes boxing gloves once you have finished training the pair's break-in time. You'll also become used to wearing gloves. The identical pair can even be given to you after the first pair stops working.

However, the leather of your glove might not be of any quality. If it lasts a year and this pair needs about 4-5 months to break in, you will only enjoy the same high-quality punching experience for about 7 months. Consequently, you will only enjoy punching for a brief period of time. So, despite the fact that it can provide a fantastic punching experience, in my opinion, it is not worthwhile.

When Not To Buy Pre-Broken In Boxing Gloves? 

Instead of purchasing boxing gloves that have already been broken in, you should break your gloves in if you want to really secure each punch. We only advise purchasing pre-broken boxing gloves if you have no other option.

What Should You Know Before Buying Boxing Gloves?

There are a few things you should be aware of before purchasing boxing gloves:

Purchasing sparring gloves rather than bag gloves is crucial when purchasing a pair of boxing gloves.

Gloves made of leather and cotton have different advantages and disadvantages. It would be beneficial if, before making your buy, you thought about what would work for you. For instance, while leather gloves may last longer, they don't offer the same level of security as fabric gloves. Although cloth gloves may need to be replaced more frequently, they are less expensive than leather gloves.

When shopping for new boxing gloves, the glove's size is crucial. To equally disperse the pressure over the glove, choosing the proper size is critical.

Make sure you choose gloves made expressly for use with punching bags if you're buying any. Bag gloves lack a thumb or wrist support and are less cushioned than sparring gloves.

What To Do If I Do Not Want To Break In My Boxing Gloves?

Many boxing glove wearers want to avoid breaking them in. The rules that apply to them are rather different.

Boxing gloves made of leather have been available on the market for a while. They are also regarded as some of the top choices for boxing gloves. But when they are brand-new, leather boxing gloves can seem rigid. A significant amount of time is also needed to break in. Having said that, various synthetic gloves of excellent quality are also offered on the market, even though leather boxing gloves are your best option in terms of quality. They also have a quick break-in time and can be broken into only one training session.

An additional benefit of these gloves is that they typically have a lot of breathability. This is due to the fact that leather boxing gloves frequently lack breathability. Additionally, wearing leather gloves for extended periods of time during exercise can be rather painful for your hands.

Wearing and using the boxing glove frequently is one of the best methods to ensure that it is comfortable for you, whether it is made of leather or a synthetic material. Using boxing gloves frequently as opposed to infrequently or after extended breaks tends to reduce the break-in time.

Things To Avoid On Your New Boxing Gloves

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Use no leather moisturisers or softeners on your boxing gloves. It has been suggested that you do this, and while it might have worked in the past on boxing gloves, most won't be suitable now. Additionally, since many boxing gloves are not made of genuine leather, applying a leather softener or moisturiser won't work and will put your gloves and the stitching at risk of being harmed. Consider getting in touch with the company that makes your gloves to see if they advise doing this if you want to do it to break in your gloves.

Do not:

  • Moisturise your gloves – Using oils and moisturisers to soften leather is advised in various ways. I suppose it's up to you. However, I'd be worried about the oils weakening the foam or harming the seams, which would reduce the longevity of your gloves.
  • Hit brick walls – Do we need to elaborate? Don't let everyone down by hitting walls with your new gloves. Padded bags and focus mitts have been designed for years to be safe to hit without damaging your hands. The bricks will also ruin the leather.
  • Put them in the tumble dryer – I've heard of this being done with shoes, but this will ruin your new gloves. In order to keep things fresh, you can do the same by washing them.

The gloves only need to be gently stretched, and then you may use them for normal training after doing some light pad and bag work for a few sessions (how frequently you train will affect how long this takes). They'll last you for a very long time if you just take good care of them.


In conclusion, breaking in your new boxing gloves is crucial before utilising them. This will reduce the possibility of your hands and knuckles getting scratched, bruised, or even harmed. After that, all that's left to do is gently extend the gloves while wearing them, land a few mild punches on a bag, and repeat the process.

By doing this, you can be sure that your brand-new boxing gloves are cosy, at ease, and prepared for use during your regular training sessions. Doing this will also guarantee that your boxing gloves stay long for you without becoming withered.

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