You’ve just completed 10 pullups of your least favorite Girl WOD (it doesn’t really matter which one, most of them have pull-ups, because they’re all bitches). You know you’re about to PR. You thrust up in that 11th kip, but suddenly a sharp pain radiates from your hand down to your soul. A rip! Nothing kills a WOD vibe like those tiny little tears.
My Past Remedy
Usually to ward off rips, I use gymnastic grips to lessen the effects of bar burn. They fit over your first three finger, cover the palm, and secured around the wrist with a small Velcro band. These are great for WODS that include pullups, deadlifts, or kettlebell swings, paired with less grip intensive movements like running, wall balls, or burpees. But for those days when you have to go from pullups to snatches or push press or hand stand pushups, they fall short. These new movements require plenty of wrist support, and that bit of Velcro won’t cut it.
So, I took to the internet to research my options for a wrist-wrap-grip combo. WODies by JerkFit pop up frequently in ads and among some of the elite’s social media, so I checked those out first. WODies combine wrist wraps with a protective flap that stretches over the three fingers and covers the entire palm, much like the gymnastic grips. However, I have to admit, I can be a bit of a cheapskate. When I saw they were $40, I had to evaluate all my recent life choices. I had just gotten a brand new pair of wrist wraps, so did I really need to buy, essentially, a second pair? I moved onward in my search to see if there was another, cheaper option. What I discovered were Natural Grips. Natural Grips fit over your middle two fingers and cover the center portion of your palm. Although they don’t have a built in wrist wrap, they can easily be tucked within your own. Since I had my shiny new wrist wraps, I decided this $20 option was the way to go.
A Two-fer Review
The Natural Grips served me well enough for a couple of months. They covered where they should, and probably saved my hands from some serious tears. However, they did come with their drawbacks. The appeal of being able to utilize my own wrist wraps was lost when they would pop out during a workout, wasting precious seconds to readjust. Also, the material wasn’t great. You could probably recreate your own Natural grips by layering some fitness tape together. This material caused them to bunch up and become misshapen in no time. I should have probably looked closer at the product description for that one though. It does state they last 3-6 months. Mine lasted 5 months, so no false advertisement there.
Back to the Search
Once I became dissatisfied with the Natural Grips, I headed back to the internet. This time, I decided it was worth coughing up the extra money, because surely the WODies would have a longer life span than the Natural Grips. I ordered my WODies from amazon, and even without prime, they arrived in two days. Eager to try them out, I brought them in the next morning for the WOD.
Testing the Goods
My hands were already a bit gnarly at the start of the workout, due to a couple of snatch sessions earlier in the week. This fact just meant the WODies had a lot to prove, and this workout was the perfect program for them to do that. It included a strength section of a five minute EMOM of six touch and go deadlifts at 175 pounds, and then, Helen: 3 rounds of a 400m run, 21 kettlebell swings (35#), and 12 pullups.
I strapped up and went at it. Of course, the WODies aren’t yet broken, but this trial run was a success. My hands felt great during the grueling workout. I did receive a new rip on my right palm, but I think that was inevitable with the state my hands were in at the time. I can only imagine the damage I would have done if I had gone bare handed.
So overall, I would give the WODies my seal of approval. They are made of quality material and are avialble in a variety of colors. Every crossfitter should toss a pair of these bad boys in their gym bag.