Image credit: CrossFit
Callus formation is a byproduct of strength training & weight lifting, just like building muscle & losing fat are. The pressure of the bar against the bones of your hands promotes callus formation.
Gripping the bar remains painful as long as you don’t have calluses. That’s one reason you should never wear gloves. However big calluses tear apart more easily, so you should minimize callus formation. Here’s how.
Grip Bars Correctly. The bar will slide down in your hand during barbell rows, dead lifts & pull ups if you put it in the palm of your hands. Your skin will fold, increasing callus formation.
Put the bar close to your fingers. Not in the palm of your hand. This only applies to pulling exercises! On pushing exercises like bench press, overhead press or dips, the bar must be close to your wrists.
Chalk. Chalk fills your skin folds, making the surface of your hand palm smooth. Less skin is pressed down, thus less callus formation. Chalk also provides a better a grip by preventing sweating.
Shave Calluses. Don’t bite or rip off calluses with your nails, you’ll rip off too much and they’ll bleed. Shave calluses every 10 days. Avoid too much shaving: it weakens the surrounding skin, causing ripped callus. Tools you can use:
- Pumice stones
- Nail files
- Foot files
How to Treat Ripped Calluses. In case you didn’t followed the above tips and ripped a callus, here’s what you can do:
- Cut the ripped skin away using scissors
- Wrap nose tissue around your hand when working out
It will take 2 weeks for your hand to heal. Count another 2 weeks for your skin to toughen up. During those 2 weeks you can rip off the calluses again. So make sure you grip the bar correctly and use chalk.