Written by James Cooper
Last Updated

When training for Muay Thai it’s important to know how to wrap your hands properly as while you are learning and practicing all the different elements, you will be facing potential bruises and injuries to your hands, so you need to protect them effectively.

 

Why Do I Need to Wrap My Hands?

Our hands contain 27 small bones, all of which are essential for full hand movement and all of which are liable to be injured during a fighting bout or practice training session unless they are properly protected by hand wraps. 

Punching a training bag without wraps on is not only painful and ineffective for your training, but it puts you at risk of breaking the bones in your hands. Wraps protect your bones from breaking, support your wrists and protect your knuckles. 

All of this protection is essential to be able to carry out your Muay Thai training. Hand wraps work by providing padding but also by compressing your hands so that the bones are left less exposed, and both of these elements will help you become a better fighter. 

It’s not just the risk of broken bones you need to think about either. Our hands contain complex nerve systems and using hands forcefully can cause nerve damage and problems over time, which hand wraps can also help to prevent. 

Hitting a pad during training or hitting a person in the wrong way, could both cause major hand damage to you, but if your hands are wrapped correctly, they will have significant protection from this risk.

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Are There Different Kinds of Wraps?

Yes, there are three different kinds of wraps that you can use which are cloth wraps, tape, and gauze wraps, and bandage wraps and it might take some trial and error for you to work out which version works best for you. 

The important thing is that whichever style you choose, you wrap your hands correctly to give your hands adequate protection during the action. The key focus you need to think about when wrapping your hands for Muay Thai is padding your knuckles. 

Creating that padding will help to protect your hands when using bags or pads during training as the smaller style gloves don’t provide that much padding for your knuckles. The last thing you want is to injure yourself while training with a bag.  

By hand wrapping correctly you will be providing sufficient extra padding around your knuckles to help keep them compressed, in place and free from any injury. If you wrap both your knuckles and your wrists in the right way, your hands will be far more protected and safer from injury. 

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So How Do I Wrap My Hands Correctly?

The technique to wrap your hands correctly is fairly simple whichever type of wrap you choose. You need to take your wrap and fold it over on itself around ten times to create a pad that’s around as big as your fist. 

You need to place that pad over your knuckles, leaving the end of the wrap pointing away from your smallest finger. Wrap three times around and over that pad so that it is now firmly attached to your knuckles to protect them. 

On the third turn, bring the wrap up from your wrist and pass it between your smallest finger and your ring fingers. Next, pass it between your index finger and your thumb, and then take the wrap around your hand and back to your wrist. 

Next, you need to take the wrap back up to between your ring finger and middle finger, down to the palm of your hand, then between your index finger and thumb again, and then in between your middle finger and index fingers. 

You are nearly wrapped now. You need to take the wrap around your index finger and thumb again, then wrap it around the palm of your hand twice, and finally wrap your wrist and secure the wrap in place. 

Now, your hand is perfectly wrapped, and your knuckles and wrist should feel padded and supported, ready for you to put on your gloves and start training, without fear of injury or broken bones in your hands.

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What if I Wrap My Hands the Wrong Way?

There are a number of common mistakes which people make when they are not used to wrapping their hands but if you do it wrong you don’t need to panic or worry, simply undo the wrap, and start over again. 

It is better to take your time to get the wrap correct than to try to fight in a hand wrap that is not going to be effective at offering you the protection you need to keep your hands and wrists safe from harm. 

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The most common error is to wrap your hands too tightly. Wraps do need to be secure but if you make them too tight you will start to lose circulation in your hands and you won’t be able to move them properly either. Training in wraps that are too tight is just impossible. 

On the flip side, if you wrap too loosely then your hand wraps will start to unravel inside your gloves which will not only be uncomfortable and distracting but also means your hands are no longer effectively protected. 

If you roll your wraps the wrong way, you won’t be able to do up the Velcro straps at the end of the process and you will have to start over again, so make sure you start off with them the right way round in the first place. 

While you are wrapping your hands, you need to be able to make a fist as you will have to do this while training. Make sure you haven’t wrapped your hands into a position that doesn’t allow you the mobility or flexibility to make a fist. 

Don’t forget your wrists as if you punch hard, without proper wrist support, you could end up with a nasty wrist sprain or worse. Always make sure you have adequately wrapped your wrists before training.

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