Boxers cannot afford to train or compete without quality boxing gloves or hand wraps. In boxing, your hands will endure repeated impacts with other objects (heavy bags and opponents being the most common). As you train, your skill level and technique will improve. With better technique your punching power will increase. Sounds great, right? But we have to remember two things — your hands! Generally, the stronger your punches become, the greater the risk of injuring your hands. Learning how to punch properly—including clenching your fists firmly on impact—can mitigate the risk to a certain extent. However, your hands are composed of flesh and bone and need to be protected from repetitive impacts. While boxing gloves are the most obvious method of protection, hand wraps are just as important. Let’s take a deeper look at why hand wraps are so important to boxers.
The Anatomy of the Hand
The hands are composed of 27 different bones. They are small and provide for a wide range of motion, allowing us to perform a variety of fine movements and activities. The eight carpal bones make up the wrist. You have five metacarpal bones that make up the center of your hand. Each of these attaches to one or more of the carpals.
Each metacarpal then attaches to one set of phalanges bones. The phalanges make up the five digits, or fingers, of the hands. Each set of phalanges includes three separate bones, except the thumb, which only has two. Together, these bones, along with tendons and ligaments, create the versatile structure of the hand.
Boxing's Impact on the Hands
Boxers place a lot of importance on keeping their hands as protected as possible during a competition. As the hands are the primary point of contact, any damage to the hands will limit a fighter’s ability to compete. The most common injuries are metacarpal instability, which leads to sprains, or “Boxer’s Knuckle,” which is a tear of the sagittal band of the knuckle. You can reduce the risk of this type of injury by wrapping your hands.
Hand Wraps — Why Do You Need Them?
By wrapping your hands, you provide them with an extra layer of protection. A tight wrap can also secure your wrist — which is prone to hyperextension. While your wrists should be free to extend during everyday activities, you want to keep them as stable as possible during boxing training and competition. This minimizes the risk of excessive flexion and extension that might occur when punching at an awkward angle or using poor form. As your skills develop, the risks might dwindle, but there’s no reason not to use hand wraps as an extra level of support.
Protecting Your Knuckles
That extra layer of protection also helps to keep your knuckles pain-free. Performing an intense workout without hand wraps can be very painful on the knuckles. Intense knuckle pain can keep you out of the gym or, even worse, cause a fracture of the knuckles that can sideline you for weeks. If you choose some quality boxing gloves built with dense padding that fit comfortably, and wear hand wraps, you can avoid the majority of wrist and hand injuries or pain.
Filling Your Gloves
Your boxing gloves should fit snug, as any wiggle room can create issues on contact. If your gloves are a bit loose, every time you land a punch they will slide on your hand. You wouldn’t wear shoes without socks for the same reason, right? Consider hand wraps to be the “socks” for your boxing gloves. Wearing hand wraps under your boxing gloves helps you achieve that snug fit that offers greater stability and security. Once you try on a pair of soft, durable, high-quality hand wraps, you will never consider training without them. Give our hand wraps a shot today and see for yourself!