You’ve just started the sweet science and now you need to know how to wrap your hands for boxing. You’ve come to the right place.
Hand wrapping is a simple but essential part of preparing for training to ensure protection and hygiene. Here I’ll teach you exactly how to do it in a few short minutes.
Put your thumb through the thumb loop and start wrapping over the back of your hand. Then wrap around your wrist 3 times. Next, wrap around your knuckles 3 times. Now we need to make an “X” shape with the wrap across the front and back of your hand, each time passing in between your fingers. Finally, wrap your thumb and use any remaining length to wrap more X shapes around your hand and fasten with the Velcro.
How to wrap your hands for boxing in 6 steps 6️⃣
This guide assumes you are using 4.5m hand wraps (my recommended length). Read further down if you are using shorter wraps.
1 – Put your thumb through the thumb loop and starting wrapping over the back of your hand. Wrapping over the back of your hand is important to prevent the wrap slipping during your training as you move your thumb.
2- Wrap around your wrist three times and knuckles three times. A simple motion that provides the foundation and support for the wrap.
3- Create X wraps between each finger. This is where it gets a little more complicated. Bring the wrap up across the back of your hand through the gap in between your pinky finger and ring finger. Then bring it round between your thumb and index fingers, across the back of your hand, round your palm and back up the back of the hand to the gap in between your ring finger and middle finger. Repeat until you have done for each of the gaps between fingers.
4 – Wrap the thumb. Wrap once around the whole thumb. Then wrap around the thumb again but bring it back across the palm, which will lock it in place while you’re training.
5- Go over the knuckles two or three more times.
6 – Finish up with a couple more “X”s around the whole hand and then fasten with the Velcro.
Job done! Now you know how to wrap your hands for boxing, you’re ready to start fighting.
It may be a little fiddly at first, but once you’ve done it a couple of times, it becomes easy.
The wrap should be snug on your hand but be careful not to wrap it too tight as you’ll block off blood circulation.
Watch how it’s done here 👇👇👇
What if I have shorter wraps? ❓
Steps 1 and 2 are the same as above. Once you have wrapped 3 times around your wrist and knuckles, form X shapes with the wrap around your hand, covering all parts of your hand. You won’t have enough length to go through your fingers.
So just keep doing this until you have almost run out of wrap, then do a few more loops around your wrist and fasten.
Why is wrapping your hands important? 🛡️
- Protection. Hand wraps act as the first line of defense for your hands. We would strongly advise against boxing without wraps unless you want to take all the skin off your knuckles. I repeat, do not box or train without wraps! Wraps also provide crucial support for all those 27 small bones in your hands and wrist by keeping your hand compact and secure while you throw punches and block those of your opponent. By fastening everything together, the wraps help to distribute the impact of punches across your entire hand.
- Hygiene. Boxing is sweaty business. Hand wraps help to absorb lots of the sweat from your hands, preventing it from getting into your gloves. It is the sweat in your gloves that causes the growth of bacteria and ensuing bad smell. Once set in, bad smells can be very hard to remove from your gloves.So, by absorbing all that sweat, the wraps help to increase the longevity of your gloves.You wouldn’t wear a pair of trainers without socks, would you?
- How To Clean Boxing Gloves (Top Tips for fresh fists)
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- Boxing Gloves for Beginners (Know the Essentials Before You Buy)
What are the different types of hand wraps? 🧵
Standard cloth hand wraps
These are the most common wraps you’ll find in a boxing gym. They’re very affordable (you can get a pack of 3 pairs for ~$15/£12), they’re versatile (you can wrap them in a manner that suits you best), and they come in a huge range of styles and lengths.
You can wash them quickly and easily for continued reuse. They are made from tough cloth which makes them very durable.
Lengths usually range from 2.5-4.5m. I would recommend at least 3.5m as this gives you enough length to wrap your hands securely. The larger your hand, the longer the wrap you should use.
Elasticated hand wraps
These wraps are similar to the standard cloth wraps but the material is more elastic. This means you can wrap your hands tighter than with the cloth wraps and the wraps don’t loosen during training like the cloth wraps sometimes do.
They are not quite as durable as the standard cloth wraps but are still a great option.
These are the quick and convenient options if you don’t want to take the (short) time to wrap your hands before training. You simply slip them on and off. Sometimes they have gel in the knuckles for extra protection.
Inner gloves are common in box-fit type sessions where casual boxers may not know how to wrap their hands. I wouldn’t recommend using these if you are boxing seriously as they do not offer nearly the same level of support as cloth wraps.
Tape & Gauze wraps
For the pros. Wrapping your hands with tape and gauze takes time and requires someone else to help you out. It’s also not reusable. On the plus side, they offer the best level of comfort and protection.
Overall, its not worth wrapping your hands like this for training. Standard cloth wraps will do the job just fine.
How do I wash my hand wraps? 🧼
I usually just wash my hand wraps in the sink or shower with hot water and hand soap soon after I have returned home from boxing. I then hang them over a door to dry and they are ready again to use by the next day. It’s very quick and easy. You could, of course, put them in the washing machine but it’s not really necessary and will take much longer.
If you do use a washing machine then it helps to use a mesh laundry bag to prevent them from tangling too much.
It helps to have several pairs of hand wraps so that you have a clean pair to use if your other pairs are dirty or are still drying.
12th Round 🔔
It’s important to know how to wrap your hands for boxing to ensure maximum protection. The method we have shown is a very standard one but there are other ways. You can experiment with different techniques to find one that suits you best.
And remember, always use wraps!
Happy fighting! 🥊🥊
“Won’t You Come Home Dear Cassius?” — Ernie Terrel