Winning is undoubtedly among the best glove manufacturers. They are a pillar of the boxing glove world and essentially are the gold standard for boxing gloves. But are they worth the price? Winning gloves typically cost between $300-400 and can even go much higher which is incredibly expensive for a pair of boxing gloves.
But what is so special about Winning gloves? What could possibly be done to make this glove worth hundreds of dollars?
There isn’t a singular answer to these questions but rather a multitude of factors that equate to a seemingly high price. Below are some of the reasons why a brand like Winning is expensive.
- They manufacter in small quantities from Japan
- Their products are hand-crafted
- Winning uses the finest materials in their gloves
- They predominantly target competitive boxer’s for whom the spending a few hundred dollars on a glove is reasonable
- They are positioned as a luxury brand in the market
I’d like to make it clear that I’m not endorsed by Winning or any boxing glove brand for that matter. But I honestly think they make brilliant gloves. I don’t believe they are for everyone, but as a boxing glove, they are difficult to critique.
Winning’s Boxing Glove Quality
The quality of Winning’s gloves is brilliant. The real question is “does the quality reflect the price?” This is a difficult question but I would say that it does. Everything from the leather to the stitching is immaculate. Founded in 1937, Winning is among the oldest and most experienced boxing glove manufacturers in the world. Compared to a pair of regular training gloves, Winning gloves feel indefinitely better.Embed from Getty Images
The other half of this question is “will the quality be beneficial?” Truthfully, no one but themselves can answer this question because there are so many personal factors involved. For those who train regularly, box competitively, and have a good level of experience, then a premium glove can really elevate your boxing. They are incredibly hard-wearing and are perfect for protecting the hands/wrists which are common criteria and concerns from professional boxers.
However, as a beginner’s glove, I don’t think that the quality would be something that provides a genuine benefit to the user. While they feel great, I’m not sure how justifiable the price is to someone who’s recently started boxing and what actual benefits they will incur from using a premium glove.
Winning’s Brand Image
Winning isn’t a brand that you’ll typically find in a fitness gym. They are catered towards people who box competitively. For someone who is boxing for general fitness then spending hundreds of dollars on boxing gloves probably doesn’t make sense. However, if you spar everyday and are looking to gain a competitive edge or the epitome of comfort, then the price seems more reasonable.
Brands like Winning also hold a certain mystique about them. We’ve seen the likes of Floyd Mayweather and Canelo Alvarez wear them in the ring but they are more commonly used in sparring and training these days. After scouring the web for examples, I found that in training, most high-level fighters were wearing Winning gloves.Embed from Getty Images
I think this is predominantly due to the fact that Winning gloves provide great wrist support and ample hand protection which is necessary if you’re going to be training several hours a day. Winning has always been known as a highly protective and well-structured glove which is what made it popular for training. Some people have gone as far as to even critique the gloves and claim that they are “too soft”.
Of course, when the public sees their favorite fighters wearing a particular brand, they are drawn towards the brand on the premise that a top sportsperson must use the best sports equipment and they want to emulate them.
Why hand-made gloves are more expensive
Most boxing gloves are mass-produced. They are usually made of synthetic leather, with some basic stuffing, and a velcro strap. Which is ideal for the vast majority of people who train boxing. Normal boxing gloves are produced with the motive to appeal to the general public. This means they need to be easy to use, affordable, and widely available. This is why you’ll find hundreds of good-quality boxing gloves around the $50 mark online.
However, hand-made boxing gloves like Winning are several steps up from conventional gloves. Firstly, they use genuine leather, which is incredibly hard-wearing and smooth. The stitching is impeccable. The design of the glove is perfect. The padding is layered and constructed with finesse. The wrist support is unparalleled. Everything about a Winning glove is purposeful. You can tell a lot of thought has been put into producing such a glove.
These raw materials inevitably cost more and because the gloves are handcrafted, the costs will further increase through time and labour. Not to mention that they won’t benefit from economies of scale in the same way that brands that produce in high volume will. Any brand that produces gloves in small quantities that are of the highest quality is going to have substantial costs which will lead to a higher price for consumers.
Winning gloves are considered luxury gloves and as a product, luxury gloves are relatively price-inelastic. This means that the price could move in either direction and most consumers would probably still buy the gloves. Customers who are spending a few hundred dollars on a glove aren’t looking to get the best value but rather the best glove possible.
Winning has undoubtedly solidified their name as one of the finest boxing glove manufacturers. The history and reputation they have built over the years allow them to produce gloves on the upper end of the market without question. They don’t have to justify their prices because everyone knows they are getting the highest quality possible from a pair of Winning gloves.
For training and sparring, I think Winning gloves are generally accepted as the best boxing gloves. The focus on hand protection is likely the reason that so many professional boxers choose to wear them. However, they aren’t as popular for professional bouts. Its much more common to see brands like Grant, Cleto Reyes, and Everlast being worn in the ring. This may be due to the softness of the gloves or brand endorsements, etc. But in regards to training, Winning seems to be the most popular glove among professionals.
A boxer’s hands are their most prized possession, so they should look to take care of them as best as possible. During training camp, they use the gloves that are most comfortable and keep their hands well protected for the fight.
While high-end brands like Winning are expensive, I think its important to put them into context. Most people who buy premium gloves are boxers, these gloves aren’t for everyone, and you don’t need a pair of gloves that cost hundreds of dollars in order to box.
Also, something being expensive is relative to who we are. Many people will spend a thousand dollars on a phone and view it as reasonable because they are so certain about the value they are getting from that product. Similarly, only a handful of experienced boxers who understand the importance of gloves when training several hours a day, can rationalize the value behind an expensive pair of gloves.