Taking care of your hands – Coach Markus

CrossFit and calluses – two words that usually go together like cake and icing. Whereas classic weight training (read bodybuilding) does not stress the tissues that much, the hands take its toll in CrossFit, especially because of the gymnastics elements in it.
Some people use gloves, but if you haven’t tried them yet, don’t even start. Gloves reduce your awareness and feeling for external objects and weaken the connection to the bar or rings, which might make you slip even more.

While it’s kind of cool to have the hands of a badass that gets shit done, excess calluses are counterproductive when it comes to protecting your hands – more is definitely not better in this case.

Over the years, I have developed my own strategy to increase the durability of my hands and prevent nasty rips. Every 2-3 days after a showering, when the hands are the softest they get, I take a normal razor and remove the very top layer of the skin. The goal is not to carve a hole out of your hands but just to make everything flat and smooth. In Sweden they would say ‘lagom’, which means “not too little, not too much”.

I am not a fan of the many hand care kits on the market, mainly because they have sharp and big blades which can very quickly leave you with bare hands if you go a bit too deep under the skin. Besides that, razors are cheap and easily accessible. I always keep an old razor blade and re-purpose it for “callus management” – no need for expensive lotions or tools.
Besides removing the excess skin, I apply moisturiser every night before going to bed, and that’s it for the next 24 hours. You might want to repeat this if you use anything that dries out the hands or damages the natural layer that protects it, like a lot of chalk, soap, or hand sanitiser.

If you struggle to maintain healthy and durable hands, try some of my tips and hopefully it helps you too.

Oly CLub for the week!


1) Snatch
Build to a heavy single for the day
2) Back squat
4 x 2@80%
3) Push press
4 x 3@70-75%
4)Pull ups
3 sets


Build to a heavy single for the day

2)Split jerk Triples
4 x 3@70-75%

3 x 8

4)Incline DB Tricep extensions
3 x Failure
Tricep kickbacks
3 x failure