New kid on the block Punch Town, a UK based company, is coming out of the gates swinging with their Karpal eX MMA gloves. I was lucky enough to be sent a pair for review on The Ground Never Misses, so for the better part of the last 6 weeks I have been using the Karpal’s in sparring, pad work, as well as rounds on the bag.
Your standard 4oz size is really the only thing “standard” about these gloves, as right off the bat Punch Town products are eye catching! Now skeletons and skulls may not be your idea of decor but in the fast paced, sink or swim business of MMA manufacturing everyone needs something that sticks out. Punch Town does just that with sharp designs and eye catching contrast. The Karpal eX for instance has the feint graphic of metacarpals (notice the play on spelling) or the bones in your hand. And these are not the cheap “iron on” type designs either as they weather the wear and tear very well.
High grade leather and tight stitching are paramount with the Karpal’s, but I am curious to see how they hold up over time since it is only a single stitch. I have no noticeable scuffs nor any wear after over 6 weeks of using them. They have held up excellently!
Outside of the great customer service I got from Aaron at MMA Opinion (the first distributor of Punch Town), two factors stick out about these gloves; the Boa Tite dual strap closure system, and the comfortability when wearing the Karpal eX.
The Boa Tite dual strap is Punch Town’s trademark wrist support system for their MMA gloves and I must admit it is killer! Glove manufactures have been trying to figure out how to offer the support and strength that a tape job does in an actual MMA bout. Some made extra long wraps to loop around several times, some designed funky strap cuts and lengths, but Punch Town has taken the wrist support to a whole new level by offering a strap system that pulls tight in both directions, not just unilaterally. This keeps the glove securely fastened with no shifting when contact is made.
Lined with a (dare I say) soft fabric interior these gloves are actually nice to wear! Minimal “break in” time was spent as they fit quite well and contour to my hand with minimal pucker on the pinkie side of the glove when a tight fist is made. The design is excellent being form fitting and tight, but not restrictive by any means. A lot of the credit is due to the Boa Tite wrist strap which really keeps the glove locked in place and the wrist strong and supported.
Overall Punch Town’s MMA glove the Karpal eX is an excellent glove. Affordably priced. Perfect for bag work, and mitt rounds but I must say I think they are too hard of a foam (and being at only 4 oz) for sparring. Strikes to the head especially must be avoided as these gloves are just a bit too hard and unforgiving in that respect. Keep your eye on Punch Town because if their MMA gloves are representative of their product line as a whole these guys are here to stay and will continue to innovate and create. The Boa Tite system should be standard on all MMA gloves!
Retailers and schools can check out Zengu for ordering info.