Miss Manners…Part 3. January 31 2013
15 DB squat snatch, right arm (35/25)
15 GHD situps
15 DB squat snatch, left arm (35/25)
15 toes to bar
Miss Manners…Part 3.
Dear Miss Manners,
First, thank you for all your help thus far in navigating the ins and outs of the gym. I have one other question that I’d love your help with. I’ve noticed that a lot of athletes in the gym like to use chalk on their hands when they do pullups, use barbells, or want to leave a handprint on each other’s shorts. I’ve also noticed that some of the more serious athletes (or at least those with serious faces) like to take chalk and have it next to them during the workout while others take the opportunity to stop in the middle of workouts and walk to the chalk bucket 3 or 4 or 12 times during a workout. Which is the right way and why is it so important?
Thanks for bringing this up. Chalk usage is a very personal topic…similar to tape. The point of chalk is to keep your hands from slipping off of bars or barbells when they get sweaty (or of course to decorate your friend’s shorts…). While it can be helpful when used correctly, it does increase friction between your hands and the bar. So, if you are having issues with your hands tearing and developing blisters, you might consider taking a few less chalk breaks during your workouts. Even if your hands are well shaved pull-up machines, ask yourself if you really need to chalk up between every 3 pullups or if you can eek out a little more intensity by stringing together longer sets. Just a suggestion.
As for doing it the way the “serious faces” do it, this is a much more serious matter and there is no gray area here. Chalk is to be used in the chalk bucket and not taken to the far reaches of the gym. It doesn’t belong on the J-hooks, racks, boxes, bucket lids, bathrooms, or on the floor. Why? Because 99% of the time it gets left where you put it. The last thing you are thinking about when you finish a workout so intense that you can’t walk to the chalk bucket is putting your chalk away. Then it gets stepped on, smashed, or scattered across the floor and the coaches’ blood pressure starts to rise. This isn’t good for anyone.
So please, help out your fellow chalkers and remind those around you to chalk responsibly. And if you haven’t yet developed a chalk addiction, you are better off for it.