Think weight lifting with wrist wraps is cheating? Think again. Nothing, in fact, could be further from the truth. What lifting with wrist wraps will do is stabilize your wrist, helping to prevent hyper-extension, among other common injuries. This article covers the basics of wrist wraps and how to use them. It also presents the five of the best wrist wraps to try in your next workout.
Our Top Picks: Best Wrist Wraps
We did the heavy lifting for you. Here’s a quick look at what stood out about each wrist wrap in our ranking.
- Best overall: Stoic Wrist Wraps. Featuring a thumb loop, these professional-grade wrist wraps from Stoic are the best in our ranking.
- Best CrossFit wrist wraps: WOD Wear Elastic Wrist Wraps. For CrossFit, we recommend the versatile elastic wrist wraps from WOD.
- Best powerlifting wrist wraps: Inzer Gripper Wrist Wraps. Proper wrist position is important when powerlifting. Maintain yours with the Inzer Gripper wrist wraps.
- Best wrist wraps for weight lifting: DMoose Fitness Wrist Wraps. For the best all-around support for general weight lifting, choose these wrist wraps from DMoose Fitness.
- Best wrist wraps for bench press: Manimal Wrist Wraps. Bench like an animal with wrist wraps from Manimal, the best wrist wraps for bench press in our ranking.
1. Stoic Wrist Wraps
The best wrist wraps overall
Brand: Stoic | Length: 18, 24, 36 Inches | Material: Nylon | Color Options: 2 | Price: 💰💰
Made from high-grade nylon— rather than the cotton or less durable material of some other wraps— the overall best wrist wraps for lifting come from Stoic. Available in three lengths and two color options (black and white), Stoic wraps use proprietary elastic to lock down securely once in place. There’s also a high-grade hook and loop enclosure to prevent them from popping loose once secure. In addition, there are right-and-left designated thumb loops for symmetrical wrapping. (Wrists wrap thumb loops also help make wrapping your wrists even easier. Just don’t leave your thumbs in the loop while lifting.)
Otherwise, Stoic is a must-have for heavy lifting, according to reports, helping focus attention on the chest rather than the wrists while lifting. We even learned they’re useful for those who don’t lift, based on feedback from someone who chose the wraps to help manage arthritis pain. In general, users say they feel great, have a nice selection of lengths, wrap easily, and provide the support wrists need while lifting.
- Strong velcro
- Stiffen wrists on heavy presses
- Extra-long option also protects forearm bones
- Velcro a little too strong — picks up fuzz everywhere
2. WOD Wear Elastic Wrist Wraps
The best CrossFit wrist wraps
Brand: WOD | Length: One-Size-Fits-All | Material: Cotton/Reinforced Stitching | Color Options: 9 | Price: 💰
Our research shows WOD Wear elastic wrist wraps are the best wrist wraps for CrossFit. They’re one-size-fits-all, available in 9 color options, and made from cotton with reinforced stitching, WOD Wear wrist wraps are easy to adjust with just a right or left twist. That’s perfect for the quick-pace of the average CrossFit workout. They come with thumb loops, and they’re also pre-shrunk and easy to clean.
WOD Wear wrist wraps are recommended by a lifter dealing with tendinitis pain in both their thumb and wrist. We were also encouraged by reports that the wraps work well for push-ups and planks. It might take a bit to get the tightness just right. However, once you find the right tension, they’re comfortable, easy to adjust, and can be quickly loosened without having to rewrap.
- Lots of stretch
- Super supportive, fair price
- Nice style, suitable for large wrists
- Bit bulky
- Get a bit smelly with use
- Not stiff enough to powerlift
3. Inzer Gripper Wrist Wraps
The best powerlifting wrist wraps
Brand: Inzer | Length: 12, 20, 36 Inches | Material: Velcro/Elastic | Color Options: 2 | Price: 💰💰💰
For powerlifting, wrist wraps need to be extra stiff and secure. Designed with powerlifting in mind, Inzer Gripper wrist wraps provide the wrist support powerlifters need. Inzer wraps lock into place by grabbing its own surface with every revolution. We also learned there’s no need for anything like chalk or stickum. On the inside, there are two bands of exposed rubber with strong velcro straps. Both help lock the wraps down firmly once they’re in place.
Otherwise, the wraps are long and wide enough to accommodate many different wrist sizes. Those who’ve tried them say they not only make lifting fun again, that they’re easy to use, and the velcro is strong. They also help address thumb and wrist pain. We like the long and durable elastic thumb loops. The 20-inch length is best for most, and some say the 36-inch feels a bit tight on their wrist. But overall, one user says they’re simply the best powerlifting wrist wraps available, and we agree.
- Unique design
- Fray-resistant fibers
- Bit spendy
- Elastic fibers stiffer than other wraps
4. DMoose Fitness Wrist Wraps
The best weight lifting wrist wraps
Brand: DMoose | Length: 12 and 18 Inches | Material: Polyester/Elastic | Color Options: 4 | Price: 💰
The best wrist wraps for weight lifting need to be versatile. We solved that problem with DMoose Fitness wrist wraps. Dmoose wrist wraps come in two lengths: 12 and 18-inches. They have an adjustable strap that’s wider than straps on other kinds of wraps. There’s also an extra-stretchy hook and loop closure, keeping you comfortable and the wraps securely in place throughout your workout. Another nice feature is the thumb loops with support braces.
One lifter used the wraps to help with tendonitis. Another chose Dmoose recovering from carpal release surgery. The general consensus is these wraps are stiff enough to excel at what wrist wraps are supposed to do without over-stabilizing the wrist. And although this won’t make you lift heavier, DMoose Fitness does make some pretty cool-looking wrist wraps. They’re available in a broad assortment of color and pattern options.
In general, though, these wraps are easy to take on and off. And you can also feel confident they’ll keep your wrist in its proper position doing all sorts of lifts.
- Good for small wrists
- Thumb elastic is a “must”
- Carry bag included with purchase
- Gave one person a rash
- Too much range for one lifter
- Velcro lost its “stick” quickly, for some
5. Manimal Wrist Wraps
The best bench press wrist wraps
Brand: Manimal | Length: One-Size-Fits-All | Material: High-grade Japanese Velcro/Reinforced Stitching | Color Options: 4 | Price: 💰💰💰💰
Working on a new PR in bench press? Wrist wraps might just put you over the top. The best wrist wraps for bench press in our estimation are made by Manimal. They’re a little spendy, but worth it, with high-grade Japanese velcro and reinforced stitching. Otherwise, these one-size-fits-all wrist wraps come in four color and pattern options. Manimal also donates a portion of each sale to nonprofits and charities.
One positive review came from someone rehabbing shoulder surgery, and the wraps really helped reduce shoulder stress. We also liked reports that Manimal wraps offer perfect support: not too stiff and not too soft. And though we can’t verify these claims, one reviewer even compared using Manimal to being “transported to Valhalla.” They also come in some rad color and patterns choices.
- Velcro strong
- Sustains a tight wrap
- Helped hit new PR in bench and shoulder
- Some found fabric abrasive
- Not enough elasticity for some
- Some wrist pain doing belly flys reported
Quick Notes About Using Wrist Wraps
Aside from protecting wrists against injuries, wrist wraps also keep the wrist properly positioned under the bar when lifting heavy. That goes for bench press, powerlifting, and Cross fit. This is particularly useful when doing heavy back squats.
We also recommend using wrist wraps when recovering from an injury. It’s not recommended to use wrist wraps for over four heavy reps, and they will slow down the development of wrist and grip strength. Wrist wraps certainly won’t weaken your wrists, though, as some people believe.
How to use wrist wraps
Wrist wraps do actually work, but like anything, they’re most effective when used properly. Here are a few pointers:
Get the Right Size
Experts recommend starting with 20-inch wrist wraps and upgrading to 36-inch wraps as strength improves.
Know When to Use Them
Unless a lifter is recovering from an injury, it’s generally recommended to wear wrist wraps only when lifting max weight. It’s a myth that wrist wraps make your wrists weaker, but there is some evidence they slow strength development, not only in the wrist muscles but also in the wrist flexors and extensors.
Get Them Tight Enough
How tight your wrist wraps should be is mostly a matter of preference. They should be tight enough they provide stability to the wrist joint, but not so tight that they cut off circulation or otherwise create discomfort. Tighten the wraps for extra support when lifting heavy.
Put Them on Correctly
When putting on your wraps for the first time, follow these simple steps:
- Put your thumb through the thumb loop
- Wind the wrap around your wrist until your wrist joint feels stable and supported but not uncomfortable
- Pull the thumb out of the loop (if you’ve wrapped it too tight, this will be nearly impossible. To solve that problem, loosen the wrap).
- Adjust the thumb loop so it isn’t in front of your palm, but rather positioned around the back of the hand.
If you like your wrist-wraps extra-tight, some experts suggest putting the thumb loop of your pinky rather than your thumb. That way you can pull the wrap tighter and it’s easier to get your finger out the loop correctly positioned when it’s time for a lift.
For this guide on best wrist wraps, our team spent 5 hours researching the most popular options from over 25 brands and manufacturers big and small. We then read about twenty-five user reviews (both positive and negative) to discover what shoppers thought about each wrist wrap. After comparing this data, we narrowed our list down to the top 5 on the market. You can count on this research to guide you to a mindful purchasing decision.
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