• Rob Olson

Protect those hands! But how?

If you've done CrossFit for any length of time, you know that your hands can take a beating! From pullups to ring rows to kettlebell swings to anything with a barbell, the hands are busy. There are probably dozens of companies vying for your dollars to protect your hands, but which is best? Here is my rundown:

My #1

Bear Komplex Rich Froning Edition



These guys will have your hands sticking to the pullup bars like glue!


I do not really enjoy them for anything else. Some people do use them for barbell work, I prefer to take them off or slide them around (so they are still connected to my wrist but not on my palm).

Other items I've tried but did not like:




Hand protection AND wrist support


Hand protection worked, but I found it slippery on the pullup bar. It took a TON of chalk to be "ok" in terms of grip. I also found the wrist wrap support to be "ok". This is a classic item trying to be two things at once, which sounds good, but its mediocrity on all levels. I also thought the finger holes were too small and found them annoying.

Rogue Mechanix Gloves



Entire hand protection. Found them best for high volume rope climbs if your hands were already beat up. Can be used for gardening after you decide they aren't worth it for CrossFit, unlike Wodies which are entirely useless.


Harder to hold on to just about everything.

The only time these may be beneficial is if your hands already have some rips, and its one of those super hot and humid days and you are pouring sweat. These guys would help protect your hands in those conditions.

There are other products out there, but I have not tried them. The truly best method is to increase the durability of your skin by doing CrossFit 5x/wk with little to no protection. Shave your calluses down in the shower (pumice stone, etc). They will toughen up over time. There are of course those days with really high volume ________ and our skin just does not stand a chance. On those days, grab some gear!

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