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Old 08-08-2006, 04:31 AM   #1
Blair Sutton
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With the recent opening of the new Crossfit facility in Ann Arbor and addition of 60 feet of pullup bars to our equipment, I've noticed that not only my hands but many others hands have been taking a beating, along with the rest of our bodies. I thought I had been maintaining my calluses by shaving them down, but I have already torn three off. Also, I've been getting blisters from working on kipping and rowing.

If anyone has any advice on how to heal torn calluses as well as what to do about these blisters that keep forming I'd appreciate it. I was also wondering if there is any benefit to using gloves or if I'm better off maintaining my calluses? I love the new gym, but it's hard to enjoy it when your hands are in such bad shape.
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Old 08-08-2006, 05:48 AM   #2
Frank M Needham
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If I had that kind of problem then I would definitely tape them prior to workout until they subside. After, you might try getting a quality pair of cuticle snips. The jaw on this little stainless steel plier-like device is perfect for snipping dead skin off. I've used them many times. I believe the rational for not using gloves is to build grip strength. I've done it with and without and never really noticed a difference but that may just be me. Having raced canoes when a teen gave me good hands, wrists, and forearms.
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Old 08-09-2006, 05:33 AM   #3
Chris Kemp
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Blair, I have got a few nice rips recently and here is what got me back in the game afterwards.

Firstly, trim all the dead skin away then soak your paw in a supersaturated salt solution (keep adding salt to bearably hot water until it won't dissolve). Disclaimer - this will sting a little especially the first few times. 10 minutes will do at a time but try for 3 a day. This seems to season the new skin so instead of being all pink and baby smooth it is pretty tough.

Other thing is to keep the edges of the rip moist - I used a non-scented or coloured chapstick. This is important because if you let them dry out they crack and hurt even more.

I feel your pain with the beating your hands take from kipping as this is almost guaranteed to rip mine but just say no to gloves and slowly build up your exposure to the things that hurt you.

Oh, and definitely tape up your hands if they are still wounded before workouts.

Cheers, kempie
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Old 08-09-2006, 08:25 AM   #4
Chris Kemp
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PS The protocol described above was contributed by Coach Sommer. Thanks to his advice I have been able to get back into the game a lot quicker than I would previously have expected.
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Old 08-09-2006, 05:12 PM   #5
Blair Sutton
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Thanks for the advice Kempie. I tried the salt water soak today at work and the pain level was a bit more than a sting; I'd put it somewhere around violent burn. But it seems to be working and the lip balm is keeping the skin soft. Hopefully things will heal up over the weekend.

As for the gloves, I didn't really want to use them, but I just wanted to see if there was any benefit.

Hopefully this will get me patched up. I'm going to pass along the info to some of the others with torn up hands. It has been hard to suffer in silence with holes in your hands.
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Old 08-09-2006, 05:19 PM   #6
Yael Grauer
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I haven't tried this, but a friend who's a gymnast swears by this site:

http://www.beastskills.com/calluses.htm
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Old 08-10-2006, 10:13 AM   #7
Blair Sutton
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Thanks for the link Yael. That looks like it will be good for maintaining my calluses once they heal back up.
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Old 08-10-2006, 10:30 AM   #8
Lincoln Brigham
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If the callous hasn't completely torn off, you can Superglue it back on. This will only hold for a few days and won't last at all through another grip workout, but it helps form a protective layer until the skin grows back.

Doctors are now using a surgical version of Superglue for cuts too small or superficial to stitch.
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Old 08-10-2006, 12:07 PM   #9
Roger Harrell
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Keep the open rip moist for a few days. Put petroleum jelly on it and keep it covered. You don't want it to dry out and split. You know, I aught to post how to make tape grips as an aid as folks go through the hand toughening cycle.
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Old 08-10-2006, 06:08 PM   #10
Blair Sutton
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Funny you mention the surgical superglue as a remedy. I work in a research lab and we actually have a similiar product that is used to hold wounds closed. I never even thought to try it on myself.
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