I see it all the time, pictures of Crossfitters bragging about their ripped hands like a badge of honor. Some may even say that it is an initiation to CrossFit and cause of celebration, however I beg to differ. We use our hands every day, especially inside the box. Whether it's toes to bar, deadlifts, pull-ups or rope climbs, you need your hands for the workout. Ripped hands can put you out of the game for up to a week, or even more if the rip is gnarly enough. So, for that very reason, I say that ripped hands are not a right of passage but detrimental to your training. Missing a week of training, especially during The Open, is not ideal. So here are some tips to taking care of your hands.
1. STOP when you know a rip is coming and live to train another day. You will know when a rip is coming on, there will be 2 or 3 reps where something just doesn't feel quite right. The extra few chest to bars or 15 kettlebell swings is not worth it.
2. File Your Callouses- while calloused hands are a symbol of hard work and the mark of a gym goer, callouses actually make it easier for you to rip. As you hang on the rig or hold on to the bar, the callouses fold up creating blisters. Utilize the dremel we have in the gym or even products like a pumice stone or Ped-Egg.
3. Moisturize - there are many products that keep your hands moisturized and healthy- WOD Welder, Tuff Hands, and Coconut Oil.
What to do when rips and tears happen?
1. Wash your hands with soap and water.
2. Apply a generous amount of Neosporin to the fresh wound.
3. Cover the wound with a small bandage or tape. This will allow the Neosporin to do its job overnight to keep the area moist and prevent infection.