If you’ve never heard of either wrist wraps or wrist straps, you may be scratching your head at the sight of your fellow gym-goers wrapping their wrists in fabric or putting on what seems to be Velcro around their hands. Well, I used to be one of those head-scratchers myself back in my early gym days.
Luckily for you (and for me!), I was curious enough to check if either of these accessories would help my workouts and what exactly they were. I'll be your guide to the wonderful world of wrist wraps vs wrist straps.
At first glance, you’d think there’s not much difference between them.
But… You’d be wrong.
Because both have purposes specific to each and understanding those differences is the key to getting the most benefits out of them.
Let's dive in and discover the secret to unstoppable wrists!
What Are The Differences Between Wrist Wraps vs. Wrist Straps?
Wrist wraps provide support and stability to the wrists during heavy lifts by providing better alignment and protection. Wrist straps, on the other hand, primarily enhance grip strength for pulling exercises by focusing on grip fatigue.
Wrist Wraps: What Are They And What is Their Purpose?
Wrist wraps help maintain proper wrist alignment and protect against strains and injuries.
By securely wrapping around your wrists, they give you that extra boost of confidence to tackle heavy lifts like a boss.
Whether going for a massive bench press or unleashing your inner Hulk with Olympic lifts, wrist wraps have your back (or, rather, your wrists).
Benefits of Using Wrist Wraps
What do wrist wraps do and how can they improve your workouts? What are the pros and cons of wrist wraps for lifting?
1. Increased Wrist Stability And Support
Wraps, by snugly enveloping your wrists, provide essential stability for your joints and muscles. Furthermore, they effectively diminish unnecessary movements while ensuring optimal wrist alignment.
2. Decreased Risk of Wrist Injuries
The majority of injuries stem from continuous strain on muscles and joints. Therefore incorporating wrist wraps into your weightlifting routine will offer vital support to your muscles and shield you from potential harm.
In the event that you do sustain a wrist injury it is advised to seek consultation from a medical professional.
3. Enhanced Performance in Exercises Requiring Wrist Mobility
Wrist wraps serve a dual purpose in enhancing the safety and comfort of your workouts. By reducing muscle fatigue and boosting grip strength they enable you to perform optimally and overcome demanding exercises.
How to Properly Use Wrist Wraps?
As helpful as wrist wraps are, you need to know how to use them for them to really become effective and do what they’re supposed to do.
1. Wrapping Technique
For an optimal wrapping technique, kindly start by securely wrapping snug wrist wraps around your wrists in a manner that adequately covers the joint area.
Following this step, carefully cross over these wraps onto the back of your hand while ensuring they remain securely fastened in place.
Remember to make any necessary adjustments concerning tightness based on individual comfort requirements for an ideal balance of support.
2. Adjusting Tension For Optimal Support
Prioritize commencing your exercises with a measured level of tension applied on the wraps in order to gauge its effectiveness in providing optimal support for your needs.
Wrist Straps: What are They and What is Their Purpose?
Wrist wraps provide added assistance during exercises involving demanding lifting or pulling motions.
By relieving strain on your hands from prolonged gripping efforts and ensuring a stable hold on weights throughout your workouts; wrist straps allow you to fully concentrate on working targeted muscles whilst feeling confident enough to gradually tackle heavier loads.
Wrist Straps Benefits
So you know now what wrist straps are. But what are all the benefits that they bring to the table? Well… Including wrist straps in your exercise routine provides several advantages.
They contribute towards enhancing your grip strength, which enables you to tackle heavier weights with ease while maintaining stability throughout different exercises.
Moreover, These straps aid in minimizing forearm and grip fatigue so that you can fully concentrate on engaging the desired muscle groups.
Ultimately by relieving stress from your wrists and improving gripping capabilities, wrist straps facilitate better performance during challenging sets.
1. Improved Grip Strength and Lifting Capacity
Adding support and stability with wrist straps allows you to focus on the targeted muscles without worrying about your grip failing.
This enables you to lift heavier weights and perform more challenging exercises, resulting in greater strength gains, improved overall performance, and improved lifting mechanics.
Weightlifters should use wrist straps to enhance lifting kinematics, reduce deadlifting time, and lessen perceived effort.
2. Reduced Stress on the Wrists During Heavy Lifting
Using wrist straps can reduce the amount of stress that is being placed on your wrists when performing heavier lifts as they are being pulled apart. These straps distribute the weight more evenly across your forearms and grip allowing you to lift with increased assurance and in a safer manner.
3. Extended Training Sessions With Reduced Fatigue
In order to enhance the length and comfort of your training sessions. Implementing wrist supports can prove advantageous. These supportive aids contribute by reducing strain on both muscles and tendons in the wrists.
As a result of decreased fatigue and enhanced comfort level during workouts. Individuals can extend their exercise durations significantly.
How to Properly Use Wrist Straps?
As with everything else, you need to know how to use it before it can work for you! I’ll explain how you should properly use wrist straps.
1. Different Strap Variations and Configurations
There are multiple types of wrist straps available out there, and you’ll have to know first what each of them does and how they do it, in order to pick the right one to fit your needs.
Single-loop straps are very simple and easy to use. but they provide only basic support. So you are trading efficiency for simplicity. Great for beginners.
Figure-eight straps offer customized tightness. They also offer increased stability. If you find yourself shaking a lot while lifting heavy, then try figure eight straps - they might help you out.
Lasso straps feature a lasso attachment. They are designed in this way in order to enhance your grip and, in that way, take pressure off the wrists. They are very popular, very effective, and they are extremely reliable(which is why they are popular).
Recommended Wrist Straps: Warm Body Cold Mind Lifting Straps
I had the opportunity to try out the WBCM lifting straps recently and I must say they've truly impressed me.
They’re strength tested for up to 666 lbs. A pretty ominous number, but hey! But, I'm not one to judge. They work. So, let’s continue!
You can also buy them in 9 different color options:
If you look at the primary colors, you've got yourself the colors of the Olympic Games logo! Nice touch. It hasn't gone unnoticed). And 4 more variations:
The straps are almost entirely in the main color in all the variations, while the text and the dots are in the secondary.
What really impressed me is how smooth they are on the inside. Sometimes you can have straps that irritate your skin. Not with these, though. Even after a strenuous workout. It's like they were made with comfort in mind! With the WBCM lifting straps, I can focus on my lifts without worrying about grip fatigue.
As with most lifting straps, or new shoes, you must break them just a tiny bit once you get them, but that is a good thing if you ask me since they feel really sturdy and solid out of the box. If you're in need of wrist lifting straps that are both reliable and comfortable, then these are definitely worth your hard -earned cash.
- Reasonably priced
- Perfectly neat stitching
- Leather ends for durability
- Very comfortable due to being extremely soft on the inside
Could be better:
- Need to be broken in before being fully comfortable (but only a small bit)
Recommended Wrist Wraps: Warm Body Cold Mind Velcro Wrist Wraps
I was thrilled to try out the WBCM Elastic Velcro Wrist Wraps because I really loved their straps. So, were they able to pull off a two out of two? Yeah, I think they did.
These wrist wraps are ideal for weightlifters who are looking for a durable product that can withstand intense workouts. The material of these wraps is both flexible and sturdy allowing me to receive ample support without compromising on comfort.
They are available in two different sizes(12 and 18). The size refers to the length in inches. The width is the same in both options, 3.15". They are super easy to wrap around your wrist because of the built-in thumb loop. Sometimes, without that, it cannot be easy to equip them, as they tend to spin endlessly, leaving you frustrated. I’m glad the people behind WBCM managed to fix that hindrance with such a simple but effective solution!
I love that I can keep them on between sets because they don't irritate my skin or cut off my circulation. And I also like how versatile they are since you can use them with various exercises such as Snatch, Clean, Jerk, Push Press, Front Squat, kettlebell, Handstand Press, Kipping, Push-ups.
If you’re in the market for wrist wraps, I cannot praise WBCM Elastic Velcro Wrist Wraps more than I already have. They offer versatility and give 10/10 in terms of functionality and reliability.
- Stretchy enough to be comfortable
- They offer superior support
Could be better:
- Only one color available
1. Are wrist straps and wrist wraps suitable for beginners?
Yes, wrist wraps and wrist straps are indeed a great choice for individuals who are new to lifting heavy barbells. These helpful tools provide much-needed support and stability during workouts that put a strain on the wrists.
For beginners, this added support is very important in ensuring safety and facilitating proper lifting techniques without sustaining injury.
2. Can wrist wraps or wrist straps completely prevent wrist injuries?
No, they cannot. Although both wrist wraps and wrist straps do offer support and decrease the chances of wrist injuries, they cannot fully ensure complete prevention.
In addition to this - proper technique and gradually increasing the workload are also crucial factors to consider. It is also important to vary your approach when lifting heavier weights than you're accustomed to.
3. Can wrist wraps and wrist straps be used together?
Yes, they undoubtedly can. Wrist wraps deliver commendable support to the wrist, whereas wrist straps prove highly beneficial in bolstering grip strength when confronted with demanding weightlifting routines.
If you’re a seasoned weight lifter then you’ve already established a close connection to both straps and wraps and know. You know which one you prefer, and why.
But if you’re just starting out, and are looking to incorporate weightlifting into your daily life, then I suggest picking either (or both, just to be sure). Both of these products were developed as tools to help make lifting easier, but also safer.
And when it comes to your own health - safety is of paramount importance. You only have one body - and you need to take care of it. In weightlifting - lifting straps, and wrist wraps will help you achieve that.
You can leave all your questions, thoughts, and ideas in the comment section below.
Happy wrapping and happy strapping!
This is a guest article by Oleksiy Torokhtiy.