For an MMA athlete, it is very important to have the best MMA gloves for his safety and flawless performance. A fighter should have several MMA training gloves, one for each of the key training areas. For example, the MMA bag gloves are not suitable as competition gloves.
The best UFC MMA gloves offer hand, finger, and wrist protection, but at the same time leaving the fighter’s hands and fingers free and mobile for extension. The gloves must also be durable and comfortable to prevent injuries.
Although most gloves are quite versatile in their usage, you should still pay attention to their pros and cons before using them.
We have created a list of the best MMA gloves for each category, to help you in your decision to purchase them.
Best MMA Glove Brands
All these companies are renowned for their best MMA gloves and gear.
Hayabusa is one of the best MMA companies and it manufactures top quality technical fight gear. Hayabusa in Japanese means Peregrine Falcon, a bird known for its deadly power and speed. The company takes pride in creating gear that follows in the tradition of the Japanese Bushido warrior code.
Combat Sports started offering their own branded fight gear products in 2003. The popular online MMA store also offers products form many top name brands in the world. Their purpose is to help outfit all MMA athletes, no matter if they’re beginners or professionals.
Venum is a very popular combat sports brand which makes a vast array of MMA, boxing, BJJ, and Martial Arts gears for men and women. So if you’re looking for women’s MMA gloves, Venom is the brand you should try first.
RDX Sports offers technologically sound, high-quality and affordable gear for Fitness, Boxing, MMA, BJJ, and Muay-Thai for an enhanced experience. RDX is now the leading British Combat Sports and Fitness brand.
Everlast became a household name they designed Jack Dempsey’s boxing gloves back for the 1919 heavyweight championship bout. The company has expanded its expertise in boxing and now produce quality MMA gloves.
Top MMA Gloves For Competition
These Hayabusa MMA gloves are some of the company’s top regulation 4oz MMA competition gloves. They are designed with an open thumb for comfort and easy fit, as well as a pre-formed curve in the upper knuckles.
The inner liner is a material resistant to odor, dubbed “X-Static” XT2 and the Dual-X wrist strap system is everything you wished for.
On the outside, the gloves are fitted with the Vylar-2 engineered leather material, which is said to be tougher and stronger than regular leather.
Since these gloves are for those looking for premium equipment, the price is up to twice that of other gloves.
These are among the best fighting gloves that you can find on the market. They have high-density stitching and premium grade Nappa leather materials. The gloves are fitted with foam layers that create a natural curve in the hands for good ergonomics and comfort.
The wrist support is high, and it is secured with a long Velcro wrap system. They also look great in the Black/White/Red color scheme and are well-built being perfect for serious MMA training.
The Venum Undisputed 2.0 exude quality, the one that you’d expect and be confident with wearing inside the octagon. Because they are made from leather, it will take a while for the break-in period.
These premium MMA fighting gloves are both design and manufactured directly in Thailand. They are made from Venum premium Skintex leather, which is both durable and comfortable for training and competition.
On the inside, the gloves have layered, high-density foam padding which offers impact absorption to protect your hands. The long strap with a Velcro closure for the wrist system makes it easy for each fighter to get a customized fit no matter if they wear inner wraps or not.
Venum Attack MMA Gloves have a padded thumb, which can be an advantage depending on the fighter’s style.
On the downside, the gloves come only in the black and white color scheme.
Every fighter would need the official UFC fight gloves. These 4-ounce gloves are the ones worn by the fighters in UFC bouts, so they are the real deal. If you plan to fight in the octagon one day, you’d better get familiar with the official gloves.
These gloves are both thumbed and open-palmed for dexterity and freedom during grappling. These pride MMA gloves are multi-layered and have pre-formed curves to absorb shock and to provide comfort during your fights and training sessions.
These gloves are quite similar to the Attack ones. The difference is the slightly lower grade materials. They are designed in Thailand but manufactured elsewhere in Asia.
On the outside the gloves have Polyurethane (PU) leather and they are built with layers of high-density foam padding. They have padded thumbs and the full wrist strap can go around the wrist twice for better securing with or without inner gloves.
Venum Challenger MMA Gloves come in four different color schemes to match various personal styles.
Top MMA Gloves For Training/Grappling
If you are looking for MMA training and grappling gloves you should definitely give RDX a try. The T2GL gloves are manufactured with real leather on the outside and layers of gel technology on the inside for improved shock absorption.
What sets these gloves apart is the longer finger coverage up to the last knuckle and the thicker padding along the front of the knuckles. The gloves also have a wrist pad and a fully sleeved thumb hole.
Although there is extra padding, the palms are still free thanks to a triangular open area. This is great for getting in your grappling work. Many fighters choose the RDX T2GL Training Gloves for bag training.
The RDX F12 gloves look like the T2GL but they are on the lower end of the pricing range, due to some lower cost materials. The real leather was replaced by Maya Hide synthetic leather and the gel technology in the padding was replaced by standard layered foal.
The padding layout is very similar to the other RDX model, as it also has the thumb sheath. You can find these gloves in four different colors.
These gloves are perfect for someone who is just getting started with the grappling training for MMA. Since they are affordable, you will not worry that you will wreck them.
They have a simple design and are fitted with a large foam pad that covers most of the hand and fingers, but there is no thumb protection. Although the palm is open, here is a cross piece that keeps the gloves in place.
The Everlast Pro Style MMA Grappling Gloves come in two sizes, Small/Medium and Large/XL, so make sure you choose carefully if you also want to wear hand wraps.
Best MMA Sparring Gloves
The best sparring gloves are hard to find, but with a little help anyone can find the right pair. The Venum Elite MMA sparring gloves are manufactured in Thailand and are designed specifically for MMA training.
The sparring gloves weight only 7 ounces and they have a beautiful finger sheath design. They are manufactured form the premium Skintex material, well known for its toughness and quality.
They have a unique wrist system with the inner Velcro loop strapping first, and then a longer outer strap going around almost 2 full times.
These RDX sparring gloves are pretty solid and on the affordable price range. This model has the company’s famous gel infused padding technology to reduce impact and shock to the hands.
The gloves are manufactured from a May Hide synthetic leather to provide good durability. The design is a little more basic than Venum gloves. Although they have finger slots, there is no unifying cross piece and the padding and thumb hole are shorter.
This model is among the best MMA glove for sparring. These almost 8-ounce sparring gloves have excellent padding on the striking areas. The padding is soft yet firm as it feels soft when touched but firm when delivering punches.
How to Choose The Best MMA Gloves?
There are some factors to take into consideration before buying a pair of MMA gloves. Read below and find out how to find the most suitable ones for you.
Competition gloves must weight around 4 ounces or less and have minimal padding.The fingers should be open and separated for freedom of movement and to be able to hold onto your opponent. Because they have little padding, you also must use inner gloves or hand wraps for protection.
Bag/grappling/training/hybrid gloves have segmented fingers and padding that covers up to the second knuckle. With this finger design you have enough movement to grapple and some protection.
Sparring gloves focus on the punching and striking techniques. They weight around 7 ounces and are fitted with extra padding around the top and front for more protection. Like boxing gloves, the MMA sparring gloves are provided with a grip bar to help create a tight fist for punching.
Leather gloves are the top choice for professional MMA fighters. 100% leather gloves are expensive, but it is a natural, tough and very durable materialif you know how to take care of it.
Synthetic leather gloves are also good, but you will feel the difference compared to 100% leather. If you do not choose the all-natural leather ones, at least make sure they are manufactured in Thailand, where the combat sporting gear industry has a huge presence. Avoid Pakistan, China or any other country.
Foam is the top choice for padding used in most MMA gloves. Some use regular foam while others have layered foam. Take note that the cheaper the foam, the less likely it is to hold up well, so make sure you look for top quality foam.
Velcro wrist strap is the best choice if you want your gloves secure and tight around your fist.
MMA Gloves Size And Weight
Usually a size chart for MMA gloves will have you measure the circumference around the knuckles of your 4 fingers and/or the size of your wrist. Most size charts are the same, but there are some size variations. If you also want to wear hand wraps under the gloves, you should pick a larger glove size. These are, in general, the sizes for MMA gloves:
- Small – 6 ½” -7 ½”
- Medium – 7 ½” – 8”
- Large – 8” – 9”
- Extra-large – 9”-10”
The weight of MMA gloves depends on son the function and type of the glove. Bag gloves are the ones that weight the most because they have more padding to protect the hands.
Sparring gloves are also quite heavy as they have to protect your partner from injury. The hybrid gloves are between the light fight gloves and the heavy padded bag gloves. Here is a weight chart so you get an idea about each type of gloves.
- Fight/Competition: 4-6 ounces
- Hybrid: 7-10 ounces
- Boxing Sparring: 14-16 ounces
- MMA Sparring: 7-10 ounces
- Bag Gloves: 10-12-14-16 ounces depending on your weight
If you do not know which gloves to choose, talk to coaches or other members from your gym. Sometimes gyms have their own norms, so you’d better ask.
When it comes to the quality of the gloves, we advise you to go for the high-quality ones that will last for a long time and will protect your hands better. Also, it will be a good investment in your training and if you learn how to take care of them you can use your gloves for years to come.