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Why Use Weight Lifting Gloves – The Actual Benefits Of Using Weightlifting Gloves
Have you been to the gym and asked yourself : why use weight lifting gloves?
I mean you’ve probably seen people using gym gloves and wondered if they’re gaining some significant benefit over you by using them right?
Why use gym gloves anyways, what’s the point?
Well in this article we’re going to be breaking down all the useful information to answer the question of why use weight lifting gloves.
Also, if you’re if you’re in the market for weight lifting gloves or after reading this article you decide you’d like to try a pair of weightlifting gloves then check out our very own Dark Iron Fitness weight lifting gloves:
Aside from that, enjoy the article
The Debate: To Use Weightlifting Gloves or Not To Use
The use of weightlifting gloves within the fitness world often falls on two sides of a coin.
It’s an ongoing debate
Some will swear by gloves, while others will completely deny any benefits using them and decline the use of them in any of their workouts.
In my opinion, gloves can be implemented in your routine to help boost what you can already do and help in any places you are lacking as far as grip and wrist problems.
However, I will admit that there are some downsides to the continual use of gloves day after day for each exercise.
- DOES USING WEIGHTLIFTING GLOVES PREVENT CALLUSES ? :
Everyone wants to prevent any possible injuries to their hands and a big misconception is that using weightlifting gloves will completely prevent your hand from getting calluses
You can still develop calluses while wearing weightlifting gloves and this is especially true if you are an avid lifter who will be working with free weights a lot of the time.
Barbells and dumbbells will work your hands even if you have gloves covering them.
Think about the different barbell movements you do and how much your hands rotate and shift on the bar – then add gloves to that scenario.
You still have that movement occurring but now the friction transfers through your gloves into your hands. Serious lifters should not rely on gloves as a form of callous prevention.
- DOES USING WEIGHTLIFTING GLOVES WEAKEN YOUR GRIP ? :
Another downside that many always bring up is that the reliance on gloves will weaken your overall grip strength.
Since you are utilizing something that adds space between your palms and the bar (or whatever you are gripping), you are essentially making the surface of that bar thicker and harder to get a complete grip.
Furthermore, once you take off those gloves, your long-term grip is weakened because you have not been building your grip strength when using the gloves for assistance.
Many believe that in turn, you are hindering your strength gains because without strong grip you cannot lift, nor push, as much as you potentially could with a strong natural grip.
- ARE WEIGHTLIFTING GLOVES REALLY BENEFICIAL ? :
In the short answer: YES!
But of course it all depends
It depends on what you are looking for in your weightlifting experience and whether or not gloves will be an enhancer or detractor from your end goals and the journey that takes you there.
The funniest thing about gloves used for weightlifting is that what they do short-term, as in during the exact moment of your workout, is basically the same thing they prevent naturally long-term.
So, your hands will be protected and stay dry during your lift, which is beneficial.
However, in the long-term, your hands will never gain natural protection against the bar nor adapt to gloveless lifting.
When you lift with gloves, you are usually more focused on the movement of the lift rather than your grip, hand placement, or form because once you grip the bar you are ready to go.
But then again,
If the gloves make your lifts “easier”, are you not sacrificing the intensity and progress of your training?
For many lifters and a lot of trainers, gloves can be a double-edged sword when it comes to the benefits they do or do not provide.
The same goes for your wrist strength.
Gloves will wrap tightly around your wrists and provide relief from the pressure of the bar and weights.
Yet, this transfers the energy needed to stabilize the weight from your wrists into the gloves, making the gloves the main reason you can keep your wrists tight and controlled.
Take away the gloves and now you will feel all of that pressure surging to your wrists, which means you have to work harder than lifting with the gloves.
Again, a short-term convenience vs. a long-term hindrance.
To learn more about wrist strength and how assistance accessories can affect your strength and lifts, check out our article on the benefits of wrist wraps here.
WHO SHOULD BE USING WEIGHTLIFTING GLOVES?
Now this is another one of those vague answers but ….It is really all up to you.
Some lifters truly believe they need gloves and that they help all around with their grip and serve as wrist protection in the gym.
I personally believe you should use gloves when you definitely need them, when your hands are already injured or if you have weak points in your hands and wrists before starting a lifting regimen.
If you have knee problems, you are going to wrap your knees before going on a marathon – right?
Same rules should apply with your hands and the use of gloves.
Anyone that feels comfort from the use of gloves and the relief of any stress or tension deserves to lift comfortably and safely.
As a beginner, I would advise against the use of gloves at the start of working out (unless the circumstances above apply to you) because you have a great opportunity to build your grip and wrist strength naturally in the beginning.
If you do use gloves, use them when you attempt one-repetition maximums or heavy sets for low reps because during these times you will have a lot of pressure weighing down on you, which will feel unnatural as a beginner.
The best thing to do is to always build your foundation in every possible form for as many parts of your body that you can before using any assistance accessories.
Being a seasoned lifter is another story.
Most heavy lifters out there already do not use gloves because they have such great foundations to their lifts and rarely need the assistance of gloves.
However, if you are a long time lifter and want to try weightlifting gloves or incorporate them into certain lifts, there should not be a problem doing so.
As with the beginners, just do not let your gloves become an extension of you in the gym for every single lift.
ALTERNATIVES TO WEIGHTLIFTING GLOVES
If you are a person who will benefit from using weightlifting gloves, then great, use them!
If you are still unsure if you need them, then try them out every now and then, but not always.
Do not be lazy or embarrassed to constantly be removing your gloves and putting them back on through the duration of your workouts – because not all exercises will need them, but some will.
For a personal account in which wrist wraps and gloves with wrist wraps were beneficial, you can read more HERE.
There are many options out there that can mimic the benefits of gloves without sacrificing a certain natural strength.
Chalk will help with grip and let you use your natural grip strength and wrist power, so give that a try as well!
Wrist wraps will help with your wrist strength and tightness, without forcing you to cover your hands and limit your natural grip and lifting straps will do the same, but give you a little more surface to grip onto tightly, as opposed to just the slippery bar.
If you are interested in trying out a pair of lifting straps then I recommend using ours:
Whereas lifting pads will cover your entire palm to grip the bar better, but not overly tighten around your wrists, which can limit your natural wrist strength.
All of these options have their own positives and negatives, but they are there to be used alternatively to gloves, or on occasion, in congruence with gloves.
Conclusion for Why Use Weight Lifting Gloves
In the end, you can take ‘em or leave ‘em, but weightlifting gloves will continue to be an integral piece of the fabric of weightlifting.
I truly believe that several people out there will benefit from using gloves and many who have weak grip strength, weak wrist strength and injured hands can find a lot of relief and further test their strength with the assistance of gloves.
When you are working out, in that moment, you will want a few specific things to occur and lifting gloves can provide those things:
- Your grip can be improved:
In the sense that your sweaty palms will no longer be a hindrance and you can safely lift heavier weight without the fear of dropping the weight.
- With certain exercises, gloves will help increase the weight you can pull:
because the weight will be distributed differently than without gloves – which is usually all in your fingers instead of your entire palm.
- The wrist support and relief of pressure are two of the more important benefits provided by the gloves:
In the heat of the lift, your wrists will be protected and secured tightly; the pressure that is placed on your joints and travels through your hands will be dispersed evenly through the gloves because you will be capable of withstanding more weight comfortably.
The use of weightlifting gloves is a personal choice that you have to make based on your needs and the health of your arms, wrists, hands and fingers.
Make the decision according to your best judgment and you should be fine.
Overall, I’d say avoid overtraining with gloves and reserve them for your more important, heavy lifts or any movements that put you under uncomfortable strain and pressure.
And that about sums up our answer to why use weight lifting gloves.
Also remember if you’ve decided that you want to start using weight lifting gym gloves then check out lifting straps as well: