Although speed bags and platforms are generally sold separately, they are designed to work together and if you intend to put in some serious training, then you need a to get yourself the best speed bag platform for your buck. We’ve picked what we consider to be the five best “home-use” platforms on the market today and reviewed them below.
As well as looking at the performance of each platform, we also considered how easy it was to put together and put on the wall and whether, in our opinion, the build quality suggested it was likely to last long enough to justify the purchase price. Four of our five picks are really for serious users (or very keen beginners), but we’ve also included one “entry-level” option, which is very affordable and great value.
Everlast Elite Adjustable Speedbag Platform
The first point we’d like to make is that this platform is 24 inches in diameter and 1 inch thick. We’ve heard of it being advertised as 1 1/12 inch thick and we don’t know why because to the best of our knowledge, Everlast only manufacture one platform at this point in time and this is it and it’s definitely 1 inch thick.
This platform is by far the most affordable on our list and we’d really describe it as a beginners’/entry level choice in our hunt for the best speed bag platform- and for the record, we mean that with perfect respect. If you’re just starting out in a sport then it’s only natural you’ll want to wait and see how you get on before investing the sort of money needed to buy one of the other bags on this list.
There are plenty of positives about this platform (in addition to its price). It can be mounted on most walls fairly easily (obviously within the limitations of what the wall will support) and can take bags of any size from the very small to the very large. It can also be easily used by people of different sizes as the height-adjustment mechanism works very well.
As always, there are a few points to keep in mind when considering an entry-level bag like this. The main one is that if you are going to use this platform anywhere there are people nearby (like in a condo) then you will need to use soundproofing - a 50lb sandbag is recommended.
The swivel is also a bit of a sticking point, sometimes literally and it can be on the noisy side. You can often solve both problems at once by using White Lithium (or similar). Alternatively, you can just buy a new swivel, which is a very affordable upgrade.
Overall, however, we think this platform is more than adequate for beginners and should be perfectly acceptable to those on really tight budgets and it’s indisputably excellent value.
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TITLE Precision Adjustable Speed Bag Platform
We suspect that if you asked anyone who has bought this platform to sum it up in one word, that word would be “solid”, thanks to the heavy-duty steel frame. The actual platform itself is 24 inches in diameter and it is a chunky 2 1/4" thick, so minimal vibrations. You can always use a sandbag if you want to banish them completely.
In our opinion, this platform had the sort of build quality you’d expect to see at a professional gym. We doubt, however,that many gyms will use this platform for the simple reason that the mechanism for adjusting its height takes a bit of time to use, by which we mean about 30 seconds to a minute. For home use, however, we doubt this will be an issue for many people.
What might be a problem for some users is that the manufacturer recommends a maximum bag size of 7" x 10". We think this is because larger bag sizes are likely to hit against the support rods. Having said that, 7" x 10" is still a fairly decent size.
Some people find the assembly challenging, but we’ve heard positive feedback about the manufacturer’s support line. So if you do have issues, somebody will have your back. We’d suggest you enlist a second pair of hands to help you out with putting it together, which makes the job much easier.
Overall, we’d say that this platform is a great choice for serious home users, particularly when people will want to share it, since its strong build quality means it can really stand up to heavy-duty use.
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Valor Fitness CA-53 Speed Bag Platform, 2-Inch
This platform is a little unusual in that it is only 23 inches in diameter but 2 inches thick. In our opinion, this is a smart move for the intended market, which is keen beginners to moderately serious home users. The slightly smaller than average size is unlikely to be much of an issue, in fact it might even be a benefit where space is tight, while the thickness dampens vibrations (and hence also keeps the noise down).
There are a few points to keep in mind if considering this platform. The first is that it’s weighty. This will be fine once you get it on the wall, but we’d definitely recommend that you have a friend help you with the build and install.
The second is that we’ve seen better installation instructions. We’d say they were OK if you were used to DIY, but if you might find putting this platform together to be a bit of a challenge. It would be nice to think that they’d have been improved by the time you make your purchase, but if not, we’ve had great feedback about the manufacturer’s support line.
The third and final is that we’ve absolutely no idea why the manufacturer bothers to include a speed bag with this platform. Frankly if you’re going to go to the effort of assembling and mounting something like this, you’re going to want something better than the one they provide. On the other hand, the included swivel is of a very decent quality and if you decide it’s not for you, it’s easy enough to upgrade.
Overall, with the exception of the included speed bag, we’d say this platform hits the spot for its target market.
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XMark Adjustable Speed Bag Platform XM-2811
We have to say, one of the points we really like about XMark is that they’re the only manufacturer on our list, who make platforms we’d class as stylish. Not everyone has the luxury of being able to set aside dedicated “gym space” and so we think it’s really positive to have the option of a platform which will actually look good in a regular, multi-functional room.
What’s even better is that these good looks come along with excellent performance standards. The actual platform is 24 inches in diameter and 1.5 inch thick, which we think is reasonable since it’s made of actual wood (as opposed to wood composites such as MDF), which is better at absorbing vibrations than metal.
Installation takes a little effort, but it’s worth it. Instructions are clear and if you have some basic DIY experience and a friend to lend an extra pair of hands and some muscles, you should find it straightforward going, with the possible exception of the swivel which, frankly, is something of a pain to open.
If we’re honest, we’re slightly disappointed with the swivel, although it’s certainly usable and replacing it is an affordable upgrade and minor task (compared to the installation).
Overall, however, we’d say this was a high-quality speed platform by any standards and we’d certainly see it as being one of our top two choices for rooms which were only part-time gyms. Our other pick for this situation would be the XMark XM-4441.
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XMark XM-4441 Adjustable Speed Bag Platform
Next in our battle for the best speed bag platform is the XMark XM-4441 which is essentially a lighter version of the Xmark XM-2811. What we mean by this is that the styling is basically the same but where the XM-2811 is 11 gauge steel, the XM-4441 has 14 gauge steel. The finish on the wood is also slightly different to the XM-2811 (it’s less glossy), but we can’t see how this would make any difference to the usage.
The sizing of the platform is exactly the same as for the XM-2811, namely 24 inches in diameter and 1.5 inch thick and the platform is still made of wood (as opposed to composite).
Essentially the same comments apply to installation. Even though this platform is slightly lighter than the XM-2811, it’s still weighty enough to make installation a two-person job but it’s a straightforward one.
If we’re really honest, we’d have to give the swivel on the XM-4441 a B+ (we’d give the one on the XM-2811 an A-), but that’s still a pretty decent mark and swivels are generally pretty easy upgrades, this one included. You might also want to consider upgrading the screw which connects the swivel and the U hook. If you use smaller bags, you may find that this actually starts to hit against the swivel which can influence the rebound and probably will make an annoying noise. Again, this is an affordable and easy upgrade.
Overall we like the XMark XM-4441 for much the same reasons as we like the XM-2811. Which one is best for you probably depends on how much you expect to use the platform.