Last Updated on November 14, 2011 by Jimson Lee
Two years ago, I talked about using wrist straps and weight belts.
I have since ditched the weight belt, and I still own a pair of gloves, but I use those mostly for chin ups or pull ups.
However, if there is one piece of equipment I can’t live without, it’s my chalk for my cleans and deadlifts.
Yes, the same stuff you write on blackboards while in school.
And I’m not a shot putter. Or gymnast.
I simply buy a block of chalk from any Rock Climbing store like Mountain Equipment Coop in Canada, Northface, REI, etc. and store it a plastic container with a lid. You can even buy a cute matching rock climbing bag.
Some people prefer a chalk sock like the refillable Metolius Super Chalk Sock.
Just apply it to the areas of your hands where you feel “hot spots” when lifting.
Unless I am at a University weight room with proper lifting platforms, I try not to be too messy, but I can see the gym staff give me an evil eye sometimes. Especially in posh Hotel gyms where I am forced to workout while travelling. I have considered brining my own mini vacuum cleaner or “dust buster” just to shut them up.
The rule is, if you have free weights, expect a few sprinkles of chalk dust here and there. It’s part of the game, unless you have an allergy to chalk. And that would be bad.
I’ve seen people use sponges instead of weight gloves. These are super cheap, and you can add a touch of water when they harden and dry up.
Just choose one that’s not so thick, unless you have very large hands.
But whether you use chalk, straps, gloves or sponges, if you weight train regularly, you will build up resistance over time and get some callouses along the way. It’s part of the sport.
Plus, you will develop nice strong forearms and a firm handshake. If there is something I HATE when meeting new people, it’s those who have limp “dead fish” handshakes. WTF?
Anthony Wallace says
If there is something I HATE when meeting new people, it’s those who have limp “dead fish” handshakes. WTF? LMAO!!!!!!
I 2ND THAT JIMSON! Great new people the right way!
Funny the “handshake” line could be the ace of the article. Also have to strongly agree with Anthony and you. Nothing gives me the creeps more than a man’s dead handshake. There is also the other side of the coin when a few guys (and probably they didn’t realize it because it’s become ingrained) will literally crush the fingers of one’s hand if the grip isn’t quite secure.
Recently, a contractor friend of mine I hired called me up just to ask me if the flooring guy he hired for some work at our office destroyed my hand also. I had to laugh and concur. I’ve been caught off-guard by a small minority of females with a strong handshake but it’s always a pleasant surprise and I always believe their intent is a good one.
Jimson Lee says
@Fred & Anthony – I am glad I am not alone on this “deadfish” matter. Only once in my life I was caught off guard and he nearly crushed my hand. I think the handshake protocols goes back to the Western days where you had to prove you had a clean draw? Or you were unarmed? Not sure…