gloves

This is another popular question in the calisthenics community. Should you wear specialized gloves when working out?

Short Answer:  Either option (gloves or no gloves) works.

Long Answer: Gloves are more of a personal choice rather than a necessity. They can certainly give you a more comfortable grip, and are useful if you’re doing push-ups on a concrete floor, or any other surface which may have potential hazards or be extremely uncomfortable for your hands. However, the biggest advantage of gloves is for working out outdoors when it’s cold and/or rainy  – you may find it difficult to workout with bare hands on wet / cold surfaces.

The hardest thing about NOT using gloves, is the couple of weeks that it takes your hands to get used to bars. During this period, you will find it difficult to do full sets of exercises on bars, particularly pull-ups, because your hands may hurt too much. Gloves may also weaken your grip and make it more difficult for you to do exercises with proper form.

And of course there’s always the threat of calluses – you can try to prevent or at least minimize them with proper grip, but it’s likely that you will experience calluses at least once when starting out.

Then there’s the whole minimalist thing – some people just hate to purchase extra products and want to do any activity with as little equipment as possible, to simulate a fully natural experience.

Personally, I used gloves for about a year, but recently switched to just using my bare hands. It was frustrating to not be able to do my full workout the first few weeks, but after that my hands got used to it.

If you decide to go with bare hands, check out this handy video on proper grip to avoid calluses:

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