Sometime ago I decided to improve my punches and strengthen my knuckles at the same time. After a quick look online I found out that I need a Makiwara – a padded wooden board mostly used in Karate. Original Makiwara is a large wooden board buried in the ground but i found some room versions of them as well for sale. I could not find exactly what i needed – they were either too small or too large and required floor mounting – so I’ve decided to build one myself:
The construction is very simple, required almost no tools and materials were off the shelf from local Home Depot. The board is mounted to the wall and extends from it only 5 inches yet allows board to bend in when punched. It produces good solid sound when hit. The tension can be adjusted by varying the length of the large piece or by hitting it higher or lower. The padding is cheap rope wrapped around the board and is quite rough – I am still using a towel hanging over it, but I hope that with regular practice I will be able to hit it bare handed.
- 5×1 by 12 ft pine board
- 50 ft of 3/8 in sisal rope (or any other padding material)
- long screws, wood glue, long staples
- Cut the board in the following lengths: 4 ft, 3 ft, 2 ft, 1 ft x 3. You can get it done right in Home Depot
- Wrap the rope around one end of 4 ft board. Use staples at the start and the end of the rope.
- Align boards and pre-drill for the screws
- Glue the 4′ board to the 2′ board for better stiffness
- Screw 3′ board to the wall on a stud. The 3′ board should disperse load on the sheet rock and prevent damage
- Screw the rest of the boards. you might need to do this in several steps depending on the screw lengths
Here are the details of the punching area. Click on the image to enlarge:
So that’s all there’s to it. Few words of warning: make sure you know what you are doing and start easy as you can injure your hand very easy – I was so excited when I built it I was hitting it with all I got until the skin came of off my knuckle. Now it wasn’t anything bad but it prevented me from doing anymore punches until it healed up which took about 3 weeks. So be forewarned.
I hope you find this info useful.