The latest installment of my favorite type of article—boxing glove reviews—is about a brand few of you have heard of but one that deserves wide recognition.
Byakko has created excellent boxing gloves on par with many other options on the market. But the exciting part comes when you compare the price of Byakko with its equals in terms of quality and comfort.
I personally love a bargain, and few are as good as these gloves. Let's see why I was so pleasantly surprised by the Byakko boxing gloves.
Byakko Boxing Gloves Rating
Each pair of Byakko gloves is handcrafted, and you can immediately tell this is true. Just like Thai-made gloves, everything here is done with precision and care. Even without considering the price, the gloves are great.
Byakko Boxing Gloves
Byakko means white tiger in Japanese, and the brand currently producing just this model of boxing gloves is the joint effort of two guys from the UK, Ben Leonard and Sean Cowie, who have a wealth of experience in creating sports equipment.
Their mission is to create fairly priced, good-quality equipment, and I can confirm they did a mighty good job with their first product. Here are the official key features:
Byakko Boxing Gloves Review
Leather & Material
The Byakko boxing gloves are made with premium cowhide leather, as all gloves should be, in my opinion. The leather feels great, smells great, and should withstand years of punishment, given the gloves' excellent overall construction and craftsmanship.
The stitching everywhere is flawless. The official information says the gloves are triple-stitched. This may be the stitching technology because I see only single and double stitching on areas that need it, but regardless of the terms, everything is done flawlessly.
The whole structure looks and feels masterfully put together, especially on the palm, with more elements and padding. Impressive stuff.
I was very pleasantly surprised by the lining on these gloves. Most boxing gloves below the premium class have the same type of nylon lining, which does an excellent job of sweat-wicking but is not very comfortable.
It always creates folds, which are not a big deal but are still not the best. In the Byakko gloves, however, they have used a different type of material that is woven in a specific pattern.
This type of lining has a much nicer and softer feel and does not fold inside. The feel is drastically better than the standard lining; the only possible issue may come with sweat.
I have no idea if this would soak up more sweat than the standard nylon and if a bad smell would set in earlier. But they feel much better, and I love that Byakko has used such a lining.
The padding is triple-layered foam, and the distribution is what you would expect from a boxing-style glove. Most of it is around the knuckles, and it's of medium density, which it should be for a good all-around glove for both heavy bag training and sparring.
You also get very hard and dense padding on the top side of the wrist, which is great for wrist protection and blocking. The padding on the inner side of the wrist is on the softer and thinner side as far as boxing-style gloves go.
What's different from the classic boxing design is the palm padding you get. There is a big, П shaped piece of padding on the palm.
This addition is suitable for parrying but more so for partner drills in the Dutch style, where each partner uses his gloves as pads. You will love this feature if you do a lot of these, as we do in our gym.
The Byakko gloves are mostly traditional boxing gloves in shape and form. Most padding is on the knuckles, the thumb is tucked away safely, and the wrist cuff is long and rigid for optimal wrist protection.
The punching area is more rounded than angular, but the first two knuckles are still slightly forward, as they should be. The overall size is definitely on the large side of things, and I will explain this further in the personal experience paragraph.
Comfort & Feel
There are no second opinions; the Byakko gloves are super comfortable. Honestly, I was a bit surprised because my Hit N Move gloves are the only pair that feel nicer and cost nearly four times as much.
As I said, the lining is not the regular glossy nylon you get with most gloves. The soft, patterned lining makes the gloves feel good even without hand wraps.
In fact, the overall fit is surprisingly snug, given the outside size of the glove. I can easily train with these without hand wraps, but when I put on wraps, the fit becomes perfect. As Byakko says on their Amazon product page, they literally fit like a glove.
A feature I want to highlight is the small bar located at the end of the fingers. Most gloves have rough stitches, but the Byakko, it's smooth and perfectly placed to support you when you squeeze your fist tight. The overall finger compartment is perfectly sized without feeling crowded or too loose.
Making a fist feels easy and natural, and the two grip bars make it comfortable to punch with power. There is minimal possibility of opening the fingers.
The thumb position is also excellent, and I haven’t felt any discomfort or hurt my thumb accidentally.
For ventilation, there are a couple of holes on the thumb and four more on the top side of the grip bar.
Byakko are very proud of the wrist protection on their gloves, and I can confirm it's excellent. The long cuff reaches halfway up the forearm with a solid hard piece of padding on the top side.
The hook-and-loop strap is well designed, and despite the large size of the gloves, the wrist protection is excellent, even for my relatively thin wrists. When I put on hand wraps and close the strap, I feel like I can punch through brick walls without hurting my wrist.
This category is entirely subjective, but in my eyes, the Byakko gloves are average. Currently, the single option is black as the primary color, with big Byakko signs and logos and some white and blue patterns. Honestly, the look is one of my least favorite parts of the gloves.
With a bit cleaner look and a better logo and font, the gloves will look classier and more in line with the actual quality, which, as I said multiple times, is excellent.
Price & Competitors
As of writing this, the Byakko gloves are selling for $65-70, which, in my opinion, is a bargain, to say the least. Given they are handmade from guanine leather, super comfortable, and have features like the lining and finger compartment bar found in much higher tier gloves.
Byakko has tried to make the best value-for-money gloves, and they succeeded. I can easily compare them to $90-100 dollar gloves; they even outperform some. For example, I like Venum and Revgear, but their $90–100 models are more expensive and undoubtedly not better than Byakko in any area but looks.
It's why I've ranked these the best boxing gloves for the money.
Using the Byakko Boxing Gloves
I want to start by saying they are super protective in all training modalities, and if that's your most important feature in a glove, the Byakko gloves will satisfy your needs. The knuckle padding, in particular, is very protective without being too thick.
The Byakko gloves are excellent for all training purposes, including heavy bag training, pad work, sparring, and partner drills.
On the heavy bag, they feel great and offer more protection than feedback. I haven't felt any knuckle or wrist pain, even the first time I tried them. The break-in period is really quick.
The Byakko gloves are also perfect for partner drills due to the extra padding on the palms. You know how important this is if you do extensive Dutch-style drills using your palms as pads. I've done an entire training session of drills and had no pain or discomfort in my hands.
In sparring, the Byakko boxing gloves also perform excellently. The padding is super protective; even if you push your fingers against your knuckles, you won't feel them. My sparring partners made remarks about how protective the gloves were after we sparred, and the only other time this happened was when I was using the Hit N Move gloves.
But this is where I want to share the thing I dislike most about Byakko: the overall bulk and size of the gloves. I have the 14-ounce version, and they are huge.
This means they offer excellent protection to you and your partners, but it also means they are harder to land around and between the guard. As you can see from the sparring footage, they look like two giant cannon balls strapped to my hands.
For some, protection trumps all, and having bigger gloves is desirable because it aids in blocking, especially if your style is based around a tight high guard.
But I prefer sleeker, more Mexican-style gloves, which I can sneak through and around the guard and give me more of a pop. But again, this is a personal preference. If you are a heavyweight wanting to spare your training partners, the Byakko gloves will be perfect.
Like I said a few times, the Byakko gloves have a noticeable boxing design. This also means there is very little opening in the fingers. This fist and wrist are tight and secured, minimizing injury. This comes as a drawback for those training in Muay Thai. These are not good for clinching and catching kicks but are perfect for boxing.
The Byakko boxing gloves are among the best value-for-money offerings on the market. They are well-crafted and constructed from genuine leather.
They are more comfortable than they have the right to be, offer excellent force absorption and wrist protection, and are equally suitable for all training purposes. The Byakko gloves punch way above their weight and outperform the competition in its price segment and the one above.
Byakko Boxing Gloves