CrossFit 8 Mile | How to Survive CrossFit Beauty Marks Part 1:Rips
CrossFit 8 Mile is a Livonia MI gym that offers classes in CrossFit, Olympic Lifting, Metabolic Conditioning, and more...
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How to Survive CrossFit Beauty Marks Part 1:Rips

27 Jan How to Survive CrossFit Beauty Marks Part 1:Rips

No one wants to rip their hands. No one wants open wounds on their palms, especially health care workers. Not only does it suck to wash your hair or use your hands, but it leaves you susceptible to pathogens. 

So how do we not rip? I’ll tell you about three! 

 Hand maintenance 

As CrossFitters we are constantly grabbing and gripping barbells, kettlebells and pull up bars. If you’ve ever took a long break, or remember first starting how soft your hands were? From that constant metal being gripped and friction in our hands we build callouses. Regularly shave down those thick callouses to lessen the chance or rips or severity of ripping. There’s number of products out there you can use. Simply use an abrasive tool to shave down those thick layers of skin. My tool of choice has a metal (cheese grater-like) side with the opposite side being a pumice stone. Using the rough side first to do the bulk of the work and then smoothing it out with the stone. There are many similar products out there that will get the job done. Do this before it’s too late! 

Reduce Friction

 Games athlete, Camille LeBlanc-Bazinet, is famous for how she crushes “Fran”. She’s also well known for ripping severely on pull ups. This is why, every time she goes to do another rep on the pull up bar she re-grips. Every time she re-grips she creating friction between her skin and the bar. Do this enough times you’ll separate the skin from your hand and rip! So next time you do pull ups, try to keep a solid grip and reduce friction and rotation. One of several reasons why I’m a believer in wrapping the thumb around the bar for pull ups.

Gymnastic Grips

It simply is a barrier between your hand and the bar. This will help if the thick callouses on your hands aren’t maintained. Products like Bear Komplex and Natural Grips come in leather or tape-like material. Difference being how long they last.  Commonly found in CrossFit is leather grips that cover only your palm. That does the job but true gymnastic grips go all the way to the first digit on two fingers and have a wooden dowel in them. Bottom line having a barrier to reduce friction will help reduce chances of rips.

The Inevitable Rip

Even with all these common practices, rips are still a possibility. Hopefully by abiding by these simple instructions tears will be few and far between. What is to be done when rips occur? First, thoroughly wipe down the equipment or space that was being used! Second wash your hands (which will burn!) Then use nail clippers or small scissors to trim the dead skin from around the wound. Next, apply an antibacterial ointment to the wound and cover it. After an extended period of time (like over night), remove the bandage and allow the wound to breath and dry out slightly. Before it gets too dry repeat the process until the wound is healed. Doing this diligently will reduce healing time to 2-3 days and not a week. 

Next time Coach programs “Angie” or “Sean” with 100+ pull ups, be prepared!

-Nick Carignan

CrossFit 8 Mile

Avoid this! Rips are a pain and will hinder training until they are healed.

Reduce sliding on surfaces in training. Pull ups, kettle swings, toes to bar can all give you rips.

Sites like and have many options to fit whichever style you prefer.