Ever felt the excitement of unboxing a brand-new pair of boxing gloves, only to find that they’re stiff and uncomfortable? Just like a pair of new shoes, boxing gloves need time to break in and mold to the shape of your hands. But how do you break in boxing gloves fast, especially leather ones?

In this guide on “how to break in boxing gloves”, we’ll walk you through the process step-by-step, so you can get the most out of your gloves and enjoy a comfortable, secure fit.

Gently Move and Squeeze the Gloves

Man in Black Tank Top Wearing Black Boxing Gloves

The first step in breaking in your new gloves is to gently move and squeeze them at home. This simple action helps to soften the padding and make the gloves more comfortable and flexible. Whether you have genuine leather or synthetic leather gloves, this method works for both types. Start by pressing down on the gloves and gently stretching them while wearing them. This will help ensure a perfect fit.

Breaking in boxing gloves at home is not only convenient but also sets the stage for a comfortable, flexible, and ready-to-use pair. A few simple actions will put you on the path to achieving a speedy break-in process.

Lightly Hit the Boxing Pads

A woman lightly hitting boxing pads

After gently moving and squeezing your gloves, it’s time to start hitting the boxing pads lightly. This step helps increase pressure on the glove’s padding, ultimately shortening the break-in time.

During this stage, it’s best to use 50% intensity to gradually break in your gloves. Allow yourself a few sessions to get used to the gloves during the break-in period. Remember, wrapping your hands increases pressure on the bag gloves’ padding, which helps speed up the break-in process.

By practicing patience and gradually increasing the intensity of your punches, you’ll ensure your gloves break in properly and comfortably. This approach protects your hands from injury and sets you up for success in the ring.

Hit the Punch Bag

A woman lightly hitting the heavy bag

Now that you’ve started the break-in process, it’s time to hit the punch bag with your new gloves. This step is essential for molding the gloves to your hand shape, ultimately improving their flexibility and performance. To get the most out of your boxing glove break-in session, aim to hit the punch bag at 50% power.

The proper technique for hitting the heavy bag involves standing in an orthodox stance, with your lead hand and foot forward. Be sure to strike the bag with the knuckles of your index and middle fingers first for maximum impact.

Use Your Gloves Regularly

Many boxing coaches like Eddy Reynoso, the trainer of Canelo Alvarez believe that regular use of your gloves, at least 2-3 times per week, helps speed up the break-in process and guarantees a comfortable fit.

Frequent use of the gloves allows them to conform to the shape of your hand, as the natural material of the gloves, such as leather, softens over time and molds to the hand’s shape. This not only improves dexterity but also provides enhanced comfort.

In addition to improving comfort, using your gloves regularly during the break-in process provides numerous advantages, such as:

  • Softening the leather
  • Ensuring wrist stability
  • Gradually breaking in the gloves
  • Providing protection
  • Offering support

So, make it a habit to use the same pair of gloves consistently to reap these benefits and enjoy a personalized fit.

Breaking in Leather Gloves: Additional Tips

For those with leather gloves, the same break-in tips apply, but there are a few additional considerations to keep in mind. Leather gloves are often stiffer and might cause blisters if used intensively straight away.

To soften the material, you can use leather conditioner or oil, making the gloves more pliable and easier to break in. However, be cautious when using oils, as they may damage the seams or foam of the gloves, limiting their durability.

Taking the time to break in your leather gloves will not only make them more comfortable but also ensure their longevity. As you follow the same break-in process for leather gloves, you’ll begin to notice the gloves molding to your hands, providing a secure and comfortable fit.

Keep in mind that properly breaking in leather gloves is a key factor in maintaining their quality and performance. By giving your gloves the attention they deserve, you’ll enjoy a better punching experience and a longer-lasting pair of gloves.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Breaking in New Gloves

Man punching the wall with boxing gloves

Avoiding common mistakes during the break-in process of your new gloves is crucial to prevent any hindrance or potential damage. One such mistake is punching hard surfaces, which can lead to arthritis in the hands and potential long-term hand injuries. Instead, use proper equipment, such as a punching bag, to ensure you stay safe and get the most out of your training.

Another common mistake is using a tumble dryer to break in your gloves. This method can cause the leather to dry out and crack, reducing the life of the gloves. Finally, avoid sitting on your gloves, as this can alter their shape and decrease their lifespan.

By steering clear of these mistakes, you’ll ensure that your training gloves properly break in, providing you with the comfort, support, and protection you need during training and matches.


Even after going through the necessary steps and tips for breaking in your new boxing gloves, you might still have some questions. The subsequent subsections will answer common queries about breaking in boxing gloves, providing guidance and insights to maximize your glove usage.

How long does it take to break in new boxing gloves?

Breaking in new boxing gloves can take a few weeks to months of regular use, so don't get discouraged if you feel they're not as comfortable as you'd like them to be right away.

Should You Buy Boxing Gloves with Long Break-In Time?

Gloves with a long break-in time may enhance the punching experience, but it’s important to weigh the leather quality and durability before making a purchase. Higher-quality leather gloves often have a longer break-in time, but they can also last longer and offer a more enjoyable punching experience.

In the end, the decision comes down to personal preference and priorities. If you value the fit and comfort provided by gloves with a long break-in time, it may be worth investing in a pair crafted from high-quality leather. If you’re looking for a quicker break-in process, consider most synthetic gloves instead. Additionally, synthetic leather pairs can be a viable alternative for those seeking a balance between comfort and break-in time.

Should You Buy Boxing Gloves That Are Already Broken In?

While buying pre-broken gloves may save time, breaking in your own gloves ensures better punch security and a more personalized fit. Pre-broken gloves do offer increased breathability and comfort, but they can also present potential drawbacks, such as:

  • Hardening of the foam padding
  • Premature foam deterioration
  • Inadequate protection
  • Reduced durability compared to gloves with layered foam molds

Breaking in your own gloves allows you to gradually mold them to the shape of your hand, resulting in a more secure and comfortable fit. This process not only protects your hands from injury but also enhances your grip and punching technique, resulting in improved performance in the ring.


In summary, breaking in your new boxing gloves is essential for achieving a comfortable and secure fit, ultimately enhancing your performance in the ring. By following the step-by-step guide outlined in this blog post, you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a comfortable and personalized pair of gloves.

Remember, whether you’re breaking in leather or synthetic gloves, patience and consistency are key to molding them to your hands and ensuring their longevity. So, invest the time and effort into breaking in your gloves, and enjoy the improved comfort, protection, and performance they provide.

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Finlay Short

Finlay Short has been a boxer for over a decade and is now a writer for Official Things sharing his boxing knowledge, expertise, and experience.