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I don't want man hands but I want to do chin-ups and pull-ups

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  • I don't want man hands but I want to do chin-ups and pull-ups

    How can I keep my hands soft and callus-free while working my way up to pull-ups and chin-ups? I went to the park to attempt them and it hurts the skin on my hands and brings back old memories of being a kid and always having little white calluses on my palms at the base of every finger and having them get blistered and tear off now and then. I really do not want that. Would using gloves be cheating? Would it even work? I don't want man hands full of calluses.
    Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

  • #2
    Gloves will help, also changing how you grip the bar (I'm assuming a bar and not a tree branch) will less the chance of calluses. Changing your grip will also work your forearms more and make pullups/chinups harder. You'll want to grab the bar with your fingers and not your palm, this way it won't pinch the skin at the base of your fingers.
    I didn't like the rules you gave me, so I made some of my own.

    Strong people are harder to kill than weak people, and more useful in general. - Mark Rippetoe

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Pinup
      You don't get calluses if you have a proper grip. You shouldn't be pinching your skin between bars and your hands, bars should be at the base of your fingers.
      Exactly. Make sure your fingers/palm are not sliding on the bar either.
      My musings

      The old stuff

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      • #4
        Hmm. The bar was a little bigger than my hands. Not as bad as a tree branch, but not as small as would have been easiest to grip. I know my grip needs work, but still I ended up with red marks at the base of every finger on my palm.
        Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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        • #5
          I have one of those pull-up bars that fits in a door way, it has padding, I haven't had any blistering on my hands using it. It was the best $30 exercise investment I've ever made. I've been a wimp all my life now at 51 I'm able to do 3 chin ups!
          Life is death. We all take turns. It's sacred to eat during our turn and be eaten when our turn is over. RichMahogany.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Pinup
            You don't get calluses if you have a proper grip. You shouldn't be pinching your skin between bars and your hands, bars should be at the base of your fingers.
            ETA: Gloves are for loo-oo-sa-hers. They add thickness, and give you a false sense of grip strength. You should just work on strengthening your actual grip.
            First answer was the best answer. Just add lotion =).
            "Go For Broke"
            Fat Kine-230/24% @ 6'2"
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            Goal- 210/6%

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            • #7
              You could try a false grip on the bar; although I find pulls a little harder. I usually use about the same grip position on pull-ups as I do for dead lift - and like any heavy lift chalk helps; calluses might just be inevitable regardless in over/underhand grip. In my experience, lacking rings, the neutral grip is best to prevent calluses...

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              • #8
                I wear gloves. I don't want calluses either just for aesthetic reasons. Mind you i still get them but as not as much. I have to admit I don't have a strong grip but I'm not sure if that is relevant to small hand.
                Last edited by cayla29s; 07-01-2012, 08:55 AM.

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                • #9
                  Don't let the calluses build up. Make sure you are buffing and keeping them down. They will maintain the protection and will be less likely to tear off.
                  Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
                  PS
                  Don't forget to play!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dirlot View Post
                    Don't let the calluses build up. Make sure you are buffing and keeping them down. They will maintain the protection and will be less likely to tear off.
                    This. I peel them off on a regular basis, and they don't look white and torn up like my boyfriend's.
                    My chocolatey Primal journey

                    Unusual food recipes (plus chocolate) blog

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pinup
                      ETA: Gloves are for loo-oo-sa-hers.
                      Ur a loo-oo-sa-her

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                      • #12
                        Soak your hands in milk.
                        In all of the universe there is only one person with your exact charateristics. Just like there is only one person with everybody else's characteristics. Effectively, your uniqueness makes you pretty average.

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                        • #13
                          What is a neutral grip? Is that with your hands parallel to each other rather than fully in chin-up or pull-up position?

                          Seriously I remember a moment in my life where I actually thought to myself that one of the best things about being an adult with a nice office job is no longer having ugly hands. Probably that was after I gave up working in a flower shop and finally had clean hands that weren't chapped, cracked, bleeding, inflamed by thorns and filled with permanent dirt in every crack.
                          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by sbhikes View Post
                            What is a neutral grip? Is that with your hands parallel to each other rather than fully in chin-up or pull-up position?

                            Seriously I remember a moment in my life where I actually thought to myself that one of the best things about being an adult with a nice office job is no longer having ugly hands. Probably that was after I gave up working in a flower shop and finally had clean hands that weren't chapped, cracked, bleeding, inflamed by thorns and filled with permanent dirt in every crack.
                            I may be a "loser" to some people, but I do wear gloves when I lift. They don't keep me from getting calluses, but they do keep the weights from slipping out of my hands, or in the case of practicing flex-arm hangs (not strong enough to do a pullup yet) they keep me from slipping off the bar. If my gym had chalk I would use that, but they don't, so my thin gloves are a decent alternative.
                            "For the great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie—deliberate, contrived, and dishonest—but the myth—persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic ... we enjoy the comfort of opinions without the discomfort of thought."
                            ---John F. Kennedy

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                            • #15
                              I found this helpful. I have the same problem. It hasn't changed because I do very little in terms of maintenance...

                              FITBOMB: CrossFit Hand Care

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