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It’s A Wrap : The Complete Guide to Wrist Wraps

Apart from looking fancy on the gym floor, fitness gear and accessories also have other important roles when it comes to showtime. The right pickings help you raise the bar (literally) in terms of both performance and appearance.  These include lifting belts, knee socks, elbow sleeves, compression wear, the list goes on.

Image from slatecrossfit.com


Wrist wraps are essentially pieces of fabric which are wrapped around the wrist and held securely with  velcro straps or tied in place with a length of string attached to the end.

Reasons to use wrist wraps

  • Joint protection

Movements which see the wrist being extended beyond its natural position, such as the front squat, snatch, clean, press, overhead squat, can potentially cause discomfort in the joint. Not only that, the external weight puts pressure on the joint. This could lead to inflammation or injuries which could otherwise have been avoided by the use of wrist wraps.

Image from from crossfitcityofangels.com
Image from from crossfitcityofangels.com

Wraps help to cushion and alleviate some of the pressure while maintaining good form in your wrists while working out.

  • Enhanced performance

If you have discomfort in your wrists while doing a workout with large rep volume or high loads of weight, wraps can give you the support needed to carry you through. Nevertheless, bear in mind that too much of a good thing is not always good.

Workouts with low rep volume or light loads of weight do not necessarily call for the usage of wrist wraps. This is because becoming dependent on them all the time tends to limit the development of strength and flexibility of your wrist.

How to use wrist wraps

  •  Proper position

The main purpose of a wrist wrap is to provide support to your wrist joint. Tying it too low is akin to wearing a forearm cuff which provides no support. Ensure that it covers the joint to create support and prevents your wrist from hyperextension.

  • Tie them right

Wrist wraps should not be so loose that they come undone mid-workout ; neither should they be too tight that your fingers turn blue from lack of blood circulation. They should be taut and firmly in place

Factors to consider

  • Material

Thinner wraps made of cotton or polyester allow for more flexibility and give more mobility, but have less support. These are advisable for rapid movements that have a wide range of motion, such as the snatch, or clean and jerk.

Thicker wraps are more stiff and offer more support, but a reduced range of motion. They are recommended for slower movements with a controlled range of motion such as the bench press and strict press.

  • Straps vs. Strings

Wraps which are held in place with velcro straps are easier to put on. However, the velcro tends to wear out and becomes less effective over time, rendering a replacement necessary.

Wraps which need to be tied on may require tightening and readjustment during a workout, which can be a hassle. On the upside, string ties do not lose their effectiveness (unlike velcro) hence can be used for a longer duration.

Where to get them

  • Online

Sites like Ebay and Amazon offer a dizzying variety of colours, styles, and designs. Brands such as Rogue, Again Faster, Ivanko, and so on are popular among the lifting community. They can be easily purchased on the Internet, but incur high costs of shipping not to mention a long time to arrive.

  • Locally (Malaysian)

One would be pleasantly surprised to discover that you can purchase wrist wraps of reliable quality from local manufacturers as well.

BeFit Malaysia (befit.com.my) carry these thick elastic velcro-strapped wraps as well as a number of other styles and designs. Their stores also provide a wealth of other fitness and health products, including health and fitness supplements and accessories.

GASP Hardcore Wrist Wrap (Black) Retails at RM120.00
GASP Hardcore Wrist Wrap (Black) Retails at

Fuel Athletics has a ready variety of cotton wrist wraps with string ties which come in a variety of fun colours —  Available at fuelathletics.com.my, or walk-in to their outlet at Damansara Heights to purchase.


Article by Cheryl Moy