If you’re into boxing you may have seen some of the top, arguably pound for pound boxers in the world (Sergey Kovalev and Vasyl Lomachenko to quickly name two) wearing a strange but simple device that consists of a cap, some elasticated string with a tennis ball attached to the end.
After seeing this you might have thought to yourself, that’s cool, where can I buy one of those. Well, oddly, given how simple they are to make (you can easily make your own), for quite a while they weren’t available to buy in many of the major online web stores in the UK, but now due to the demand increasing, they have started hitting the shelves in considerable numbers.
This is great news for people who are interested in effectively increasing their reflexes, hand to eye co-ordination and punch accuracy at one of the cheapest price points possible. Although some might not think it because it could be passed off as a child’s toy to those who don’t know about them, this simple device is very effective.
There’s a reason why boxers who are at the pinnacle of the sport are using these. They are excellent for sharpening reflexes and reaction time, and perfect for enhancing accuracy. If you’re someone who just randomly punches a bag to stay in shape, and doesn’t do any sparring or other work, including pad work, using the speed ball, floor to ceiling, etc, chances are you are just hitting the bag without much thought for where the punches are landing, other than high, low or straight or side.
That’s where the Tennis Ball Punching Cap comes into play. This device somewhat bridges the gap. A moving target really makes the brain work harder. Rather than just punching hard, the person has to actually think and concentrate in order to hit the ball with any consistency.
Now you may be thinking, in the title it says “cap” but what is shown in the picture of the product is basically a headband. Yes that’s correct. But you can attach the headband to fit around a cap, if that’s how you want to use it. You can also buy different model variations which are not a headband at all, but actually a cap with the elasticated string, and ball, fixed directly to the front.
How hard are they to use? Well, like everything in boxing that requires a high level of synchronicity, it’s difficult to begin with. But just like with a floor to ceiling ball, once you get in tune with the rhythm and get the timing down, it gets much much easier. However, if you want to truly master this device it will take some time. If you look at how Sergey Kovalev (video below) and Vasyl Lomachenko are able to successfully hit the ball while bouncing on the balls of their feet (in a skipping motion), this is much harder than hitting the ball while stationary (feet planted). Practice Practice Practice!
Quality of the product? Even though it is a cheaply priced product, so you won’t lose much money if it breaks quickly, you still don’t want to waste money on something that just falls apart after a week. The actual product “reviewed”, or pictured here does have a pretty good track record. As does another model out there for sale called the Boxaball. Reviews are mostly positive. However, it does have a small percentage of buyers who say it broke very quickly. Just like with any product, this is fairly normal.
But with how easy it is to make one of these, you could very quickly make your own and really put some effort into creating a super reliable version for very little money outlay. In fact, probably for free by using bits and pieces you already have a home. Buy or DIY, the choice is yours. Either way, this is a great tool for sharpening the mind and body to work in unison with each other. Can also be a lot of fun too!