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Muay Thai Glove Weight and Size: The Essential Factors to Consider

April 25, 20237 min read

Muay Thai Glove Weight and Size: The Essential Factors to Consider

Are you confused by the size and weight of Muay Thai gloves? Some say to get specific ounces for your size and weight, while others recommend one for all. Let's break down the weights/sizes and their ideal uses.

Different Muay Thai glove sizes are required for different aspects of training and fighting. Here is how to choose the right glove size.

muay thai glove size guide

Above is the guide by Fairtex on how some people choose glove size by fighter weight. This is NOT what we do in the US gyms. But, Fairtex is one of the best brands out there, so I wanted to include that guide in case your gym allows you to choose by your weight.

8oz Gloves

Are you fighting? 8oz gloves are the regulation size for Muay Thai fights. I suggest you put these on, hit your head a little, and realize how little protection these gloves offer. They will help your knuckles not break more than bare-knuckle fighting.

8oz glove design offers a combination of protection and dexterity so that strikes can be effectively landed without compromising hand safety. 8-ounce gloves also provide more maneuverability and help improve coordination, flexibility, speed, and conditioning during a fight. The smaller size also helps to ensure less energy is expended per punch compared to larger gloves.

10oz Gloves

10oz gloves have the same purpose as 8oz but are usually used for larger fighters for more protection.

12oz Gloves

My first gloves were 12oz, and the gym sold them to me! We will get into choosing the right gym in another post, but this was insane to me. I even sparred with these, which is a big no-no.

12oz gloves are ideal for bag and pad work because they provide more protection for your hands than lighter gloves while still allowing you to generate power in your punches. The extra weight of the 12oz gloves also helps to increase speed in your strikes (for when you drop to lighter gloves), making them an excellent choice for training.

14oz gloves are also suitable for heavy bag and pad work as they offer even more protection than 12oz gloves. This will help protect the fighter’s hands and the pad holder from injury. With either glove size, you can be sure that you’ll be able to train safely and effectively with bag and pad work.

14oz Gloves

This is an odd size because you can easily hop up to the recommended or required 16oz gloves or drop to the 12oz gloves. Talk to your coach to see if they allow for 14oz gloves in sparring. 14oz gloves are good for bag and pad training to help condition hands.

16oz Gloves

16oz gloves are recommended for sparring. The extra weight in the gloves provides more cushioning and padding for both your hands and your sparring partner’s head and body from your punches. This helps to reduce the risk of injury during sparring sessions. Most likely, your gym will not let you spar with anything less than 16oz.

In Thailand, sparring is done almost every session in pro gyms. Light sparring does not require a lot of speed or power because it is to improve technique. Many students get this wrong and basically want to play fight. With 16oz gloves, you can be sure that you have enough protection while still being able to throw fast punches when needed. If you are a Muay Thai beginner, 16oz gloves are great for all of your training.

Kard Chuek

These aren't gloves, but they are worth mentioning because you will see them in photos. Kard Chuek are hemp ropes wrapped around the hands and wrists of the fighters.

Muay Thai ropes are meant to protect a fighter's hands, but they will actually cause more harm to their opponent. Unlike boxing gloves, the impact area is smaller to concentrate force, and the ropes are harder.

Commonly Asked Questions:

  1. What is the standard weight for Muay Thai gloves?
    Between 8 and 16oz.

  2. How do I know what size Muay Thai gloves to get?
    For weight, ask your coach. For sizing, measure the circumference of your hand around your knuckles (not including your thumb). You can then use this measurement and the sizing chart provided by the manufacturer to determine which size glove will provide the best fit for you.

  3. Can I use the same size gloves for both training and sparring in Muay Thai?
    It is not recommended to use the same size gloves for both training and sparring in Muay Thai. Sizing for sparring gloves is generally larger than that for training gloves due to the impact of strikes on your opponent and the amount of protection different sizes of gloves offer.

  4. Is it better to have heavier or lighter gloves for Muay Thai?
    Make sure you are following the guidelines of your coach. Better will be subjective as to whether you are sparring or doing bag work.

  5. How do I measure my hand size for Muay Thai gloves?
    To measure your hand size for Muay Thai gloves, you should use a tape measure. Wrap the tape measure around the widest part of your palm and make a note of the measurement in inches. This should give you an accurate measurement size for finding your Muay Thai gloves.

  6. Do Muay Thai gloves come in different weights for different skill levels?
    Yes, Muay Thai gloves come in different weights that are appropriate for different skill levels. Different glove weights will provide varying levels of protection, support, and bulk. Beginners may use 16oz, while advanced students may start using 14oz or 12oz in sparring.

  7. Are Muay Thai gloves adjustable to fit different hand sizes?
    Yes, Muay Thai gloves are adjustable and usually come with Velcro strapping or laces that can be adjusted to fit different hand sizes. The foam inside is usually tight initially but then forms to your hands.

  8. Can I use Muay Thai gloves for other martial arts or combat sports?
    Kickboxing is the closest related sport, and you could use them. To learn more about using them for boxing, ask me and I will soon have: Muay Thai Gloves vs. Boxing Gloves: The Crucial Differences Explained

  9. Can I use MMA gloves for Muay Thai?
    In One Championship, they use the equivalent of MMA gloves during their Muay Thai fights. However, this has caused controversy because they are too small according to the official rules of Muay Thai. If you plan on fighting in One, then I guess you can train in them. Otherwise, ouch!

  10. Is it better to train with heavier gloves?

    Training with heavier gloves can be beneficial in certain ways. Using heavier gloves can increase the strength and endurance of your arm and shoulder muscles, as they require more effort to move and punch with. This can also help with improving hand speed and accuracy once you switch back to lighter gloves.
    However, it is important to note that training with heavier gloves for extended periods of time can also lead to fatigue and possibly even injury if not done properly. It's important to increase the weight of your gloves gradually and not overdo it.

  11. Do heavier Muay Thai gloves hurt less?
    It's important to note that the level of pain or discomfort experienced during sparring or competition is not solely dependent on the weight of the glove but also on factors such as technique, speed, and the area of the body being struck. Wearing appropriate protective gear and following proper technique can help minimize the risk of injury and discomfort during training or competition. With that said - the same person hitting you the same exact way uses 16oz gloves, then an 8oz glove, and you'd feel that 8oz more. 


If you want to learn how to further protect your hands during training and fighting, I will soon have a new blog: Muay Thai Wraps [Everything You Need To Know].

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