Best Muay Thai Gloves for Big Hands
Do your Muay Thai gloves fit overly tight? An ill-fitted pair of gloves can cause harm to your wrists and hands. It is important to wear well-fitted gloves for Muay Thai training that can provide sufficient padding and wrist support while not restricting blood flow. If you have large or bulky hands, many Muay Thai gloves can often fit too uncomfortably snug.
All About The Fit
For a person with large hands, that implies that your gloves should not fit so tightly that blood flow is restricted and your hands feel numb after 5 minutes wearing them. If this continues long-term on a regular basis, there could be adverse effects such as damaged blood vessels. In terms of the degree of snugness, it’s more a matter of preference. Some like it a little more snug, while some prefer gloves that feel “just right”. You should try a few pairs to decide what type of fit you prefer. As they say, comfort is key.
How to Choose the Best Muay Thai Gloves
In order for you to choose the best possible gloves for your training, it is helpful to know some fundamental features and their usage. If you are in the heavy weight class with big hands, then lighter gloves in 12oz or even 14oz are obviously not the right sizes for you. Generally, the heavier the gloves, the roomier they will fit. Go with at least 16oz for training and pad work.
Gloves Sizing Table
Punching gloves sizing are measured in terms of weight and run from 8oz to 20oz. Generally speaking, the choice of the weight of gloves depends on the application (more on that later), as well as the size of the boxer. Here’s a general (not definitive) sizing chart -based on body weight- for reference:
|Body Weight||Recommended Gloves Size|
|120lbs & below||12oz or 14oz|
|120lbs – 150lbs||14oz – 16oz|
|150lbs – 180lbs||16oz – 20oz|
|180lbs & above||18oz – 20oz|
Leather vs synthetic
Muay Thai is a high impact sports and you will be hitting a lot of tough pads, bags and maybe also your sparring partners’ dense skull. You are going to need reasonably durable gloves to withstand the constant and regular punishment. For that, genuine leather lasts longer and is always favored over synthetic leather. Synthetic -or man-made- leather disintegrates rather fast compared to genuine leather. Synthetic gloves are usually vinyl and while there are high quality made-made leather gloves in the market, the general consensus is still to go for genuine leather.
Lace up vs Velcro (Hook n Loop)
Lace-ups usually fit better since you have more room to adjust the tightness of the gloves. When properly laced up, they won’t shift and will feel extremely secured. The downside to using lace-ups is that you will need someone to help you put them on. This is impractical for a normal training session where you will be doing a myriad of exercises and you may need to take your gloves on and off multiple times. In sparring and especially competition, the lace ups are favored. But velcros are a better choice under most training circumstances since they can be taken on/off so easily by yourself.
Training vs Sparring
Training gloves are used for padwork and bag work while sparring gloves are used strictly for sparring. The reason for having separate gloves for sparring/training is that you will wreck your gloves padding when you work on those mitts, pads and heavy bags. It is not going to feel good for your sparring partners when they feel the increased impact of your knuckles through the thinned padding.
For training gloves, refer to the gloves sizing table given above for the right size. As for sparring, the recommended size for most men is 16oz and bigger guys will use 18oz. Some brands offer up to 20oz gloves, suitable for the really heavy guys or the giant hands. One reason for using heavier gloves is because gloves of these weights offers more padding which minimizes the impact when it lands on your sparring partner. You are also going to need that extra bit more of padding to protect your hands and wrists, especially against kicks when you block.
The other traditional reason for using heavier gloves for sparring is to get accustomed to the weight for building arm strength. When you enter a fight with lighter fight gloves, they are going to feel light as feather and you are going to be punching like a machine.
Boxing Gloves vs Muay Thai Gloves
For general Muay Thai training involving bagwork, padwork or even sparring, you can use either boxing or Muay Thai gloves. There are differences in the aerodynamics construct but won’t affect the casual fighter. Muay Thai gloves are also constructed such that they allow you to open your hands, unlike the more rigid construct of boxing gloves. This feature is made to allow for clinching. So if you aren’t planning to do any clinching with your gloves on during training, both types of gloves will work equally well.
Brands of Gloves
There are many Muay Thai and boxing gloves makers out in the market. Of course, they are not all built equally; some are more equal than others. If you make comparisons based on price, a Thai brand will often offer better quality in terms of the materials and workmanship. This shouldn’t come as a surprise since labor costs and materials are comparatively cheaper in Thailand.
Fairtex, Twins Special and Top King are the 3 most popular brands made in Thailand. For most people, you won’t go wrong with these 3. Then there are other Thai brands such as Boon Sport, Windy, Raja, Sandee, Thaismai and they are all reasonably good quality gear. Reviews can be a bit mixed but on the whole, all the Thai brands mentioned will offer you reasonable mileage. However, Thai brands are generally more snug and sizes often go up to only 16 oz.
Even though you are going to be training Muay Thai, traditional boxing brands like Cleto Reyes, Winning, and Rival are excellent choices too. As they are made to fit the average Western-sized males, the fit may be suitable for your big hands. The only thing is that they may be much costlier compared to the Thai brands.
Then there are modern brands targeted at the MMA/UFC generation such as Venum, Hayabusa, Rivals and others. These brands have striking aesthetic designs and heavy research-based technology. Among the MMA brands, Rivals offers a roomier hand compartment fitting. The one downside that I can think of, is also the higher price tag.
Now that you have identified the type of gloves best suited for your usage, here are some tips on how you can increase the odds of picking the best pair with your next purchase.
Tips on choosing your Muay Thai gloves
Tip – Ask your gym mates if you can try out their gloves to check the fitting. There will be a myriad of brands and models being worn at your gym so you can try them all out. It’s also a good way to make friends if you are new to the gym.
Tip – If your gym is of a decent quality, it is likely that they carry their own line of fight gear and apparel. These gloves are commonly manufactured in the factory of one of the big Thai brands such as Twins or Top King so they will be of very good quality. The best thing about buying from your gym is that you get to try them on first and you will often get a discount as a member. Prices, however, are usually higher than what you can find online for other brands.
Tip – There’s a good chance that you can find at least one fight store in your town or city. If you don’t feel shy about it, you should head down to check the selection and try them on for size before committing to a purchase online. Due to rental and other operating costs of a brick-and-mortar retail store, the prices will usually be higher than online retail price tags. However, if you are able to maintain a good relationship with your local fight store, you may be able to get some good deals or discounts. Nothing beats feeling/trying out the gears in real life and rubbing shoulders with fellow fight enthusiasts.
Tip – Make sure that you have your handwraps on when trying out gloves. Having your handwraps on makes a whole lot of difference. If you try on a gloves without your handwraps and it feels just right, it could end up a too tight with your handwraps on. Some brands are a little more snug than others, and even within the brand, there might be a little variance among different models. So bear that in mind. If it’s a little too tight without handwraps, it’s probably not the right pair for you.
Best Muay Thai Gloves for Big Hands
So you have digested all the information above, and still not quite sure where/how to proceed? No worries at all. There are literally thousands of gloves models out in the market and we know it can certainly get a bit stressful picking out the right pair. We have ploughed and searched the fields and shops to bring you a list of gloves best suited for big hands. So here’s a list of our recommendations to get you started:
Windy Training Gloves
- Durable leather construction
- Attached thumbs
- Convenient Hook & Loop closures
- Dense multi-layered foam padding
- Handmade in Thailand
Windy gloves have one of the biggest hand compartments compared to the other Thai brands. These gloves are available up to 18 oz, making them good choices as either training or sparring gloves. The brand has been around fairly long enough (since 1951) and obviously have the know-hows to make a pair of good quality gloves. The gloves will feel snug at first, but will fit comfortably after breaking in. The aesthetic design is very simple, but they would suit those who favor the classic boxing gloves look.
|– “These gloves are awesome. My instructor is jealous.”
– “ I like them very much. Fit my hand well even though my hands tend to be larger.“
Twins Special Premium Leather Boxing Gloves BGVL-3
- Experience for yourself why Twins Special Boxing Gloves are widely considered the best boxing gloves in the world. Made in Thailand at the Twins Special factory, these leather boxing gloves are crafted from the finest materials and constructed with care to endure through years of use in the toughest Muay Thai, Boxing, and MMA gyms in the world.
- Inside the boxing glove, high-quality multilayer foam protects your hand from impact. The foam is skillfully shaped to best support your hand while you are punching.
- For sparring, training, and competition, our top-selling Velcro Boxing Gloves provide excellent wrist support and hand protection. You will find Twins Special Velcro Boxing Gloves in the best training places, because experienced trainers trust Twins Special quality.
- The Twins Special Velcro Boxing Glove comes in several different sizes. In Thailand, the 6 oz boxing gloves, 8 oz boxing gloves, and 10 oz boxing gloves are often used for competition bouts. For high-impact training and sparring, Thai boxers will wear 12 oz boxing gloves, 14 oz boxing gloves, 16 oz boxing gloves, and 18 oz box gloves.
- The padded wrist of the boxing glove, with its integrated Velcro-wrist strap, helps hold the wrist steady and guard against impact from kicks and punches The high-quality Velcro used by Twins Special in the wrist-strap of their Velcro Boxing Gloves will maintain its value for years.
Twins Special is arguably the most popular Muay Thai brand right now. These durable, premium cowhide leather gloves are favored by everyone from casual gym goers to trainers to professional fighters alike. Twins gloves have roomy compartments compared to other Thai brands which make them better options (relatively) for people with big hands. They are very well-padded from the knuckles to the back of the hand. Whether you are using them for sparring or training, the thick and springy cushion makes them an ideal choice. They may feel snug when you just purchase them but will break in after a few usage.
|– “they have more cushioning than other gloves I have used for Muay Thai and I highly recommend getting them.“
– “Comfy gloves for punching people in the face. Training partners almost enjoy getting hit as much as hit them, just kidding“
Title Gel World Bag Gloves
Title is a reputable and popular boxing brand. These Gel World Bag gloves are approximately 16oz gloves but are made in different sizing for hands of different sizes. They go up to XL which would fit the bulkiest of hands. These would be excellent as training gloves but if you belong in the heavyweight class, 200lbs and above, 18oz will be more appropriate for sparring to protect both yourself and your sparring partner.
|– “I have been boxing for 10 year and gone through tons of gloves and these are by far my favorite.“
– “Good fit, they hold up to hard use, and look great.“
Rivals High Performance Sparring Gloves
- Full grain all-leather construction
- Rival's "Ergo Xtrem Strap System"
- 15˚ angled strap at wrist for anatomical fit
- Unique conic design and snug fitting long cuff for optimal wrist support
- Over 1.75" of layered foam padding
Rivals is a fairly new MMA brand. Like many MMA brands, they promote themselves based on research and innovative product design. These hook-n-loop High performance gloves are Rivals’ most popular gloves. They would work as well as training gloves despite being touted as sparring gloves. The most interesting design aspect is the angled strap (Ergo Xtrem Strap System) compared to the common horizontal strap. This slant on the classic approach -pun intended- is advertised as providing better wrist support but could get a little getting used to. Other than that, these great looking gloves go up to 18 oz, are well padded and made with high quality leather.
|– “The conical fit is great and the protection on the wrist and knuckles are second to none.“
– “The higher level of protection provided by the Rival gloves have given me great confidence about hitting much harder.“
Ring to Cage Deluxe MiM Foam Gloves
- Top rated gloves available on the market, rate 10/10 on Sherdog
- Our New and Improved Deluxe MiM Foam Safety Strap Sparring Gloves are the best gloves available on the market!
- Our special 2.5" of MiM Foam Technology protects the knuckles hand hands while our new and improved Safety Strap Closure System provides the ultimate wrist support by having both an elastic strap and a leather strap Velcro closure system
- No other glove comes close to the level of protection our glove provides. Made of cowhide leather, attached padded thumbs, soft poly/nylong lining for quick drying.
- Now also available in 20, 22 and 24oz
There isn’t many fight brands out there that produce heavier gloves than 20oz and RtC makes them up to 34oz! For that alone, it’s worth checking them out. It’s hard to imagine anyone so gigantic that they need gloves this heavy. These are probably viable options for those on the Goliath scale range or for those who wants to train with heavier gloves for conditioning.
|– “ it’s a top notch glove with great support from the knuckles to the wrist.“
– “Comfortable and durable, this is, quite simply, the best sparring gloves I’ve owned.“
Contender Fight Sports Palladium Tri-Ply Sparring Gloves
- Extra wide cuff provides superior wrist support
- Moisture-wicking inner hand liner promotes moisture evaporation
- They are constructed of high quality, full grain leather
These have been brought up on a few occasions on forums and seem suited for large hands. These gloves go up to 18 oz which would be suitable for heavyweight sparring. Price-wise, they are on the higher side compared to the other brands which offer equal or better quality so it sits at the bottom of our recommendations.
|– “Extremely happy with these gloves. Very comfortable.“
– “A very comfortable fit.“
The fit of your personal punching gloves is ultimately a personal choice: Some people like it slightly roomy, while some like it snug. But more importantly, they need to be able to provide appropriate support and protection for your hands. You may have to buy and try out a few pairs before you eventually find a pair that you love. With the information and recommendations that are presented here, we hope you can soon find the most fitting pair of gloves. Keep fighting and as always,