Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag Review
Fairtex are an iconic Muay Thai brand who have been producing premium quality equipment since 1971. Known for their quality around the world, their product range can be found adorning the very best fighters and utilised in the very best gyms! The Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag is an excellent example of this. Go anywhere in Thailand and you will come across many of these fantastic bags being used by local or visiting practitioners on a regular basis. They are one of those pieces of kit that make everyone go 'wow'! A lot of people in the UK seem to not know where to get one from as well, they are pretty simple to pick up from Muaythai-Boxing MTB (as linked in the image below) so give them a visit after reading this review if they are of interest!!
I have been a massive fan of these bags for a long time! I have recently changed the use of one of the training areas at my gym just so that I can put up 6 of these. This bag is a beast and if it is not the biggest of it's kind anywhere in the world currently, then it is certainly one of them. It is definitely the largest bag Fairtex produces and is approx 140kg when filled (although this is a rough estimate and will vary greatly dependent on what you use to fill it). Dimensions are 210cm in height by 59cm in diameter. It will always be delivered unfilled as the weight when filled makes it impossible to do otherwise. It does not come with any fixings and there are no specifically designed ones for it that you can buy separately from Fairtex.
Setting it up
Ok, there is no getting away from this. This is going to be no quick and easy process ha ha. Firstly, you will need to decide whether you are going down the conventional road of hanging it from a bracket or the alternate route of pole mounting it from the floor. Given the size and weight, if you are hanging it you will need a substantial bracket with a very strong wall from which to fix it to(or if you have a solid RSJ type beam, you could always chain it to that). This bag though was specifically designed for being pole mounted (it has separate 15cm wide inner running through the centre of it) and as such that is a genuine option to consider. Unfortunately though, there are no specialised fixings made for doing this, you will have to formulate your own solution should you wish to do it this way. I personally have pole mounted all the 6 I now currently have up utilising a framework made up of scaffolding poles and strong fixings.
Once you have it up, you then have to fill it. The easiest option is to just buy the cotton filler when you purchase the bag. This however is going to add another £200 to what you pay (excluding delivery) just for filling one! I went down the road of using old clothing/rags (I sourced these from companies that have off cuts as a natural part of their working process or what they deal in i.e. cash for clothes) for the main filling combined with a 2 inch thing dense foam outer (I bought 220cm by 200cm strips of foam from a foam supplier). I used the foam to try and help keep the shape of the bags over the duration of their life as the outer as well as cutting up what remained to help flesh out parts of the inner. If you just used clothes or any other material on their own, there will be more of a tendency for extreme sagging where the bag gets hit the most as it settles over time. This does take time. These bags like to have a lot of filling to be solid!!
However, when they are up and full, they look amazing! If you have fixed it up and filled it well, it will make any training space look fantastic. A real talking point, everyone is going to be impressed seeing one of these bad boys up!
Training on the Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag
You have done all the hard getting it up, now onto making it pay for all the time it took!! It is a solid bag when filled (no matter which way you have decided to fix it) and given the sheer size of it, it is great for working all ranges and techniques. Where it excels most though for me is in kicking. The height combined with the fact it will either not move (if pole mounted) or barely move (if hung) means you can really let go in terms of variety, power and volume when working your legs. The density sucks it out of you. Having so much resistance at the end of your shots is what makes this a great bag for power, you are really going to love letting rip on it
Obviously, having so little movement in the bag makes this not a piece of kit you can work your timing on or clinch to any great effect so there are some factors to bear in mind.
Muay Thai Tutorials with the Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag
I am not the only fan of this great piece of kit it would seem. When I have previously been down filming with the amazingly talented Damien Trainor at his fantastic gym K-Star Legacy in Birmingham, he did some excellent tutorials covering bag work using the Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag. He loves using them as much as I do! Check out 2 of them below;
Check out the K-Star Legacy Gym Facebook page out today at www.facebook.com/K-Star-Legacy-Muay-Thai-Gym or their website at www.k-starlegacy.co.uk for further information on training, private lessons and how to contact Damien with regards to seminars etc!
Any other things to consider? Well, I have already covered the difficulties faced when putting up the Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag so the only other real thing to consider is the cost! This bag retails at £184.99 unfilled in the UK (excluding delivery). Although this puts it above the cheapest level of bags on the market, it appears to not be the most expensive. The filling and fixing of this monster though really needs to be taken into account when purchasing. This price will go up considerably if you do not manage to get your filling cheaply or free of charge.
- Design - An iconic bag if there ever was one, owning one is liking owning a piece of Thailand
- Heavy - The size and volume makes this a legitimately heavy bag, ideal for working on power
- Durability - This bag is going to last you a long time, you can throw the kitchen sink at it and it will still ask for more
- Variety - You can work any range quite happily on this bag. From low kicks to elbows or boxing to knees, you will find this piece of kit awesome to hit!!
- Difficult Set Up - These are not easy bags to put up. Even if you have a strong wall and bracket in place (never mind if you want to pole mount them), they will take a lot of filling to get them to full capacity
- Cost - Although on the surface it appears to not be ridiculous (given the dimensions of the bag) in price, as it always comes unfilled, you will need to source filling cheaply (or free) to avoid a load of extra outlay.
- Weight - You will need a strong wall/fixing to ensure this stays up or come up with a pole mounting solution that works
Would I recommend this bag? Without a shadow of a doubt! If like me, you have been looking at gyms with these in enviously for a long time, you are going to love having one of your own. They are the goliath of the bag world in every respect. Size, durability and use are all major strengths of the Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag. Boxers are probably not going to get as much from this bag as those who want to utilise all their limbs i.e. Muay Thai, Kickboxing or MMA based athletes
Is this bag for you? I would say that this bag was designed for gyms as opposed to one made for home use. The size of it and all other factors mentioned above mean that it needs space, solid walls and a monetary investment to make it a feasible purchase. If however you have all these, go for it! Nothing screams bad ass more than owning a Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag, especially if you had one up in your house ha ha!!
Design - 8/10 (would be higher if they actually made the pole fixings for it)
Quality to Cost Ratio - 8/10
Durability - 10/10
Ease of Set Up - 5/10 (a pain in the bum to put up if pole mounting and to fill)
Use Boxing - 7/10 (Someone just boxing would be better looking elsewhere)
Use all Striking - 9/10
Overall - 9/10 (I love it!!)
For any further information on the Fairtex 7ft Pole Bag or if you would like to purchase one, please visit www.muaythai-boxing.com!
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