How Gym Gloves Keep You From Improving Your Performance?
1. To increase your grip – Wearing gym gloves is supposed to provide you with a better grip while holding onto dumbbells and barbells throughout your routine.
2. To protect your hands – Gym gloves are worn to protect your hands from common afflictions, including calluses.
3. Wrist support – Some gym gloves wrap around your wrist, thus providing additional support to this vulnerable part of your body during heavy lifting.
With all of these supposed benefits, it makes sense, of course, that men and women spend money on gym gloves. The problem is, most gym gloves don’t live up to their supposed benefits and, in fact, can keep you from improving your performance.
Debunking Gym Gloves
Each of the three supposed benefits that gym gloves tout as unique to them, are actually not found in gym gloves at all. They’re found in other workout gear, most notably lifting grips.
1. While it’s possible that gym gloves do, in part, increase your grip, the difference between glove grip and bare-hand grip is typically negligible. That’s because in order to be at least somewhat comfortable and able to adapt to a hand’s movement, gym gloves are limited in the type of material they can be made from.
If gym gloves were made in the same type of rubbery material as, for example, the Grip Power Pad PRO lifting grip, then they’d be impossible to wear. But that rubbery material of the PRO (as well as the neoprene material of the Grip Power Pad NEO and FIT) is what gives weightlifters the type of increased grip they need to boost their performance.
Weightlifters who wear gym gloves experience very little grip enhancement, and often note that their routines suffer as a result.
2. It makes sense that any type of added material would protect your hands during a workout, but do gym gloves really do what they claim they do? Again, we only have to look at the material gym gloves are made from to see that these gloves fall short of your expectations. How much protection can a glove truly provide if it’s so thin and flimsy?
Lifting grips, on the other hand, benefit from their ability to be made from far more durable, cushioning material. In order for your gym gloves to maintain the notion of a “glove,” they can’t afford to be overly thick and bulky.
The interesting thing, as well, about these workout gloves is that while they may help prevent some calluses, at first, over time they tend to cause more discomfort and damage to your hands. But how?
That’s because during a workout routine, your body’s temperature is already elevated as your heartbeat races in order to pump blood to your working muscles. One of the parts of your body doing most of the work (and heavy lifting), are your hands. By default, your heads heat up, sweat, and swell, during your workout routine. One of the last things you ought to do is cover those hands entirely in a pair of gym gloves that will only increase their heat, cause more sweating, and, in turn, make it more likely that you suffer from blisters or calluses.
Lifting grips, like the ones made by Grip Power Pads, only serve to protect the parts of your hands (the insides) that need protection. Less material yet more protection means your hands stay safe while still being able to breathe during your routine.
3. The final benefit gym gloves claim to provide is wrist support. Your wrists incur a great deal of abuse during your workouts. Even a seemingly simple exercise like pushups or dips exerts a great deal of force and pressure onto your wrists. Some gym gloves are designed to wrap around your wrists and provide support. However, most weightlifters have remarked that the support they feel is slight -at best – and certainly not worth the added bulky (and hot) material of their gloves.
As we mentioned earlier, gym gloves are a great way for you to do exactly what you don’t want to do – and that’s provide additional heat to your hands. The wrist guards found on many gloves add to the material (and heat) forced upon your hands. In fact, the wrist guards found on gym gloves work to trap in heat and moisture, which is a sure recipe for not only blisters, but bacteria and germs.
Gym gloves give you less control over your routine
Weightlifters also complain that they have little control over how secure they can strap their gloves onto their hands. These gloves tend to shrink, expand, and stretch over time, making them virtually useless.
Lifting grips, on the other hand, maintain their shape and size, because of the material they’re made from, and because you’re not forcing your hand inside the grip. Many lifting grips feature a Velcro strap and metal ring that allow weightlifters to have complete control over how tight (or lose) their grip pads are. Gym gloves, on the other hand, don’t provide this type of versatility. As a result, weightlifters often complain that they’re never fully comfortable during their routine.
Grip, comfort, and support – gym gloves fall short
All of us are looking for ways to enhance our routine and make the most of our workouts. Often times we find ourselves cutting a routine short – or lifting lighter weight – because our hands are in pain or uncomfortable. Gym gloves claim to address this issue, but the proof is in the pudding. More times than not, gloves fall short of their claims, leaving weightlifters wanting more. That’s when they turn to lifting grips, which have proven to provide men and women the grip, comfort and support they need, without the disadvantages of a glove.