We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
Wrist braces support your joints on pressing movements.
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images
When you watch weightlifters in the Olympics, powerlifters in competition or even just bodybuilders at your local gym, you'll notice that many wear wrist supports. These braces are designed to support the joint and reduce the amount of strain going through the wrist. If you're recovering from a wrist injury, have suffered wrist issues in the past or just want to protect yourself from strains and sprains, wrist braces may be the answer.
The two Olympic lifts are the snatch and the clean and jerk. Both these moves finish with the bar directly overhead, with all the weight transferred through your wrists and arms and then into your torso, core and legs. Wrist wraps are allowed in competition, and you may also find them useful in training. Many accessory lifts, such as overhead squats, front squats and overhead presses, can also strain your wrists, so braces can be useful with them as well. As wrist braces are fairly bulky, many Olympic weightlifters prefer to use a thin bandage or tape to support their wrists instead.
Just like Olympic weightlifting, powerlifting permits the wearing of wrist supports. Under International Powerlifting Federation Guidelines, however, only wrist wraps from commercial manufacturers that have been previously approved by the federation are allowed. Wrist braces can be particularly helpful if you hold the barbell low on your back when squatting and also during the bench press. You can wear them when deadlifting too, but they won't offer any additional support as deadlifting is a pulling movement and doesn't strain the wrists in the same way.
Wrist Braces for Injury
Chunkier, more rigid braces are also available, but these are designed more to protect a recent injury rather than to offer general support to weightlifters. The most common conditions you'd be likely to use these for are carpal tunnel syndrome or inflammation of one of the tendons around the wrist. The type of brace you would need depends on the severity and type of your injury. Your best bet is to ask your doctor of physiotherapist for specific recommendations.
Perform Better With Wrist Braces
The main benefit of wearing wrist braces for weightlifting is to stop weak or small wrists from becoming a limiting factor in your performance. You still need to train your forearm muscles to help develop strong wrist joints rather than using braces or wraps as a replacement for forearm training, notes trainer Devin Harper of Breaking Muscle. Use wrist braces on any heavy pressing movements but avoid using them in your lighter sets or warm-ups. Make sure you wrap them tightly enough to provide ample support, but not so tight that they restrict blood flow.