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The Case for Wearing CrossFit Gloves

Posted: Nov 13 2015

 

There is considerable debate within CrossFit, weightlifting or Olympic lifting circles as to whether or not wearing workout gloves help or hurt one’s workouts.  Some people swear by them and would not go to the gym without their weight lifting gloves. Others claim they interfere with their workout, most notably in that using gloves prevent them from developing true grip strength or a true feel for the bar.  Some also claim that wearing gloves do not entirely prevent calluses and can prevent .  At heart wearing workout gloves is a personal choice.  You should consider the pros and cons of wearing workout gloves before making your decision.

We generally are of the opinion that wearing workout gloves provide excellent protection during one’s workouts and ultimately help you get more out of your lifts.  This is particularly true for anything beyond your one rep max and training heavy at a fairly high rep range where going bare-gloved puts far too much pressure on one’s hands and wrists. 

But here is a quick summary of reasons as to why you should consider wearing workout gloves for your intense weight training sessions.

Grip

Hands get sweaty during a workout. When they do, your hands can slip. This can be annoying if you are doing pull ups and keep falling off the bar. It is also dangerous if you are holding heavy weights over your body. Weight lifting gloves help to secure your grip on weights or on bars, making your workouts inherently safer.

Calluses and Blisters

Lifting weights over long periods of time results in calluses and blisters on the hands. Some people find these unattractive and use weight lifting gloves to preserve the appearance of their hands. Even those people who do not mind tough hands can still benefit from weight lifting gloves. A tiny blister can prevent a weight lifter from using his hands that day. Weight lifting gloves prevent blisters and puts you in a position to shake someone’s hands. Consider the alternative of going around the office or being at a business meeting shaking people’s hands, all the while worrying about the embarrassment of people noticing or feeling your blisters.. 

Pressure

As mentioned previously, weight lifting gloves relieve pressure placed on your hands when lifting heavy weights. This allows you to move beyond the limitations of your hands. The chest and back muscles on most people can handle much more weight than their naked hands can support. Weight lifting gloves increase the pressure capacity on your hands and distributes them more evenly towards larger muscles that can shoulder a greater load.

Wrist Support

Most weight lifting gloves also wrap partially around one’s wrists. This provides valuable support for the wrists while they support heavy weights. The material of the glove acts like extra ligaments and tendons while the wrist is bent backward. Weight lifting gloves help prevent wrist injuries in the gym.

Increased Lift

In light of the decreased pressure on one’s hands and wrists, weight lifting gloves can ultimately make you stronger and increase your workout performance. They do this by distributing the weight being lifted across the forearms instead of making your fingers hold it all. This is especially effective in pulling exercises like deadlifts or upright rows. Weight gloves with wrist straps allow you to lift much more weight than you could with just your hands.

So there you have it.  The case for wearing workout gloves.  The choice is ultimately personal, of course.

Do you wear workout gloves?  Do you find they help your grip?  Can you lift more with them?  Let us know!

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