How to Protect Calloused Hands: Workout Tips
Calluses are a part of the journey in any barbell sport. Bodybuilders, powerlifters, strongman competitors, and powerlifters deal with calluses all the time. Calluses are an inevitable part of the journey just like getting sore. However, you can’t just leave your calluses as they are since that could result in getting skin rips which can be uncomfortable and might prevent you from going hard in training for a few sessions. There are many ways and strategies you can protect calloused hands that will make sure that you do not experience any discomfort such as using gloves or even supplementing with collagen complex.
Why do I get Calluses?
Calluses are not exclusive to Weightlifters or CrossFitters, a lot of people can get calluses from their daily activities. Hard labor workers especially get calloused hands from working with tough materials such as steel, concrete, and wood.
Calluses grow and develop after minor consistent trauma to the hands. Constant exposure to a surface such as tough materials can lead to small scarring in the hands that eventually builds up and overcompensates healing. This is because the calluses are there to protect your hands and that thick pad of the outer skin can act as friction between your skin and the surface. In this case, a barbell knurling can roughen up your hands after constant exposure.
Calluses also build up from all sorts of tension on the skin whether it be from pulling in the deadlift, holding in the press, or moving the barbell in rows. The thick padding of calluses can also grow on many parts of the hands and not just the base of the fingers in the palm. They can grow on your fingers and even in the webbing of the palm and the thumb.
How do I get rid of calluses?
There are a few ways of getting rid of calluses such as filing them down or removing them through exfoliation. This isn’t that much of a concern because they thin out and disappear once you stop training. Filling them down can help but it should be worth noting that filling calluses down will only result in more calluses if you do not change your training habits.
How to protect my hands from calluses?
Being proactive and thinking ahead before you start to develop calluses is the best thing you can do to protect your hands instead of being reactive when it's too late and they rip. This can be very uncomfortable and might prevent you from going hard in the gym which chances of you reading this means you like to go hard in your workouts! No worries here are a few things you can do to protect calloused hands and also to prevent the chances of ripping.
Change your grip
The first thing you can do is actually changing your grip and exercise selection. If you workout with a barbell and your exercise selection consists of deadlifts, barbell rows, snatches, cleans, and presses, then this will inevitably result in callus buildup. If deadlifts are a frequent movement in your routine, a good idea might be to grip the bar lower on your palm almost like lifting with your fingers. This will prevent the bar from rolling on your hands while you’re holding the barbell.
Another thing you can is to use chalk. Chalk is a great tool you can use because it removes moisture from your hands resulting in better grip. As a result, chalk will also help you prevent the bar from slipping that can lead to callus build-up and skin tears.
Protecting your hands from calluses also has to do with the barbell itself. If the barbell you’re using is very sharp such as in a new barbell or a deadlift bar with aggressive knurling, then this will cause callus formation. Stick with barbells that have mild knurling or older barbells.
You might also want to consider using hand lotion after you train especially on sessions where you use your hands a lot. This will moisturize your hands and prevent skin cracking. In addition to that, it helps your hands heal faster after you train your grip. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day will also help keep your skin hydrated plus your body loves it!
Gloves might be a good option if you do not use a lot of barbells. Gloves can be a bad idea because they’re not optimal for grip performance. However, if your goal is not performing better in barbell movements and you just want to exercise, then you might consider using gloves for callus prevention.
Collagen is also a nutrient option to consider to use for the purpose of protecting your hands from calluses and skin tears. By supplementing with Premium Collagen Complex, it may enhance your skin’s ability to recover faster due to the fact that it contains Type 1 of Collagen that aids in skin health.