The Ancient History of Boxing Gloves


Since the starting of boxing, boxing gloves have been an essential part of this sport. Whatever the culture or the style of boxing is, it is necessary for the boxers of different countries.

Gloves have multiple purposes to serve. It softens the blows, protects the face of the person being punched and it also keeps your hands protected from serious injury while hitting the opponent.


The history of boxing gloves

The history of boxing gloves is long. When it reappeared in the late 1600s, boxers used to hit with bare-knuckles. But as the sport faced a more civilized approach, later on, the use of boxing gloves came into action.

Gloves came with padding for extra protection. It is heard that Jack Broughton, the British Boxing champ of the early 1700s, was the real inventor of boxing gloves with padding.

But, that type of gloves was not used in every match. They were mostly used during practice and informal boxing matches. Major public boxing competitions were still bare-knuckled at that time.

However, it is easy to guess the bad sides of those bare-knuckle boxing events, isn’t it? Many talented boxers died in those bare-knuckled matches and the number was rising.

So, the concerned authority had to do something about that. They established the newly introduced boxing rules in the 1700s. Later on, the 1800s boxing matches hardly felt the necessity to mention the use of boxing gloves individually.

But, boxers were unwilling to follow the rules and continued matches with bare knuckles. As a result, bare-knuckle boxing was banned in the 1800s and until now, its ragged reputation exists in the world’s history.

John Graham Chambers in London issued the famous Queensbury rules in 1866 and it was the official ending period of bare-knuckle boxing. According to those rules, a boxer must wear padded gloves for any kind of boxing match.

The rules were approved by most of the people and were used everywhere by the 20th century. Gradually, the bare-knuckle boxing disappeared from boxing events.

Among all the bare-knuckle boxing champions, John L. Sullivan was the last. The participated in a fight with “Gentleman Jim” who was the first of the Marquise of Queensbury rule champions.

John L. Sullivan lost his championship on that event. Though he was the champion of the bare-knuckle boxing era, both of them wore padded boxing gloves during that fight.

Nowadays, the effectiveness of boxing gloves is measured by their weight. The more the weight, the safer it is for the combatants. It is not related to the amount of padding anyway.

The main reason is- when boxers wear heavyweight boxing gloves, they cannot swing as fast as those with lighter gloves can.

Boxing Gloves: Which is best for you?

There are different types of boxing gloves available on the market. They differ in size, style, material, etc. Gloves are being recommended depending on the purpose.

For example, leather gloves are better for training. Though they are a bit costly, they will last long. It may not be an issue for fitness, but a matter of concern for focus pads, punching bags and even sparring.

Now, the boxing gloves are tied on with laces so that it does not change its place during a fight. It is mostly used for professional boxing competitions. The Velcro wrist straps are more effective for training as you can put on the lace and remove it all by yourself. But, a boxer cannot do it with laced gloves. Thus, it is important to use the right size gloves.

Boxing gloves come in 3 different sizes- small, medium, and large. Generally, large gloves are used by average men and medium ones by average women.

The weight of boxing gloves varies according to the age of combatants. It ranges from 10-20 for aged boxers and 4-8 ounces for children.

As told earlier, the weight of boxing gloves determines the level of protection. Protective provides increases with weight. The recommended weight for beginners ranges from 120z-16oz.

16oz gloves are perfect for sparring purposes. Professional boxers wear 10oz gloves for international matches.


If you wear, the boxing gloves while training, it will be good for the knuckles, wrists, and small bones. They will protect the body parts from intense blows. Do not use worn-out gloves.

Try to change your boxing gloves from time to time and must change as soon as you find any sign of wear.

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