Rafael Nadal receiving a medical treatment for a blister on his hand on Day 12 of the 2014 Australian Open (Source: Jan 24, 2014 – AP Photo)
If you’re new to tennis or you’ve picked up a racquet for the first time in months, you may be prone to friction blisters on your palms or fingers. Seasoned tennis players can even develop calluses due to the repetitive gripping action on their racquets. These calluses can cause discomfort and form into blisters, which affects your performance. However, these skin problems are typically preventable. Here are some tips for how to prevent blisters on your hands and how to treat an already occurring blister.
First, your grip size could be the source of the issue. If your grip is too small or too large, the racquet will twist and turn in your hand, making you prone to painful blisters. When you buy a tennis racquet, use a ruler to measure from the middle of your palm up to the tip of your ring finger. That number reveals your proper grip size. Our grip guide explains more details about how to choose the best grip for your game. Next, pay attention to how you hold the racquet. Holding the grip too low can also cause blisters.
Use Cushioned Grips
Sometimes players squeeze the racquet handle in tense moments. Gripping the handle too hard and sweaty palms cause repeated rubbing and friction. This, then, can lead to the formation of blisters on the hands. To prevent these unpleasant sores, apply a Gamma Honey Cushion Tennis Replacement Grip that will wick away moisture. Or, you can use a Wilson Cushion Aire Classic Sponge Replacement Grip that provides a unique felt layer for absorbing sweat.
Also, it’s best to use a fresh overgrip each time you play. During long matches, the overgrip’s tackiness deteriorates and promotes slipping, which makes it more difficult to hold onto the racquet. My personal favorite is the Wilson Pro Tennis Overgrip, which helps me grip the racquet tightly while soaking up sweat and protecting my hands from blisters.
Other Tips for Prevention
Blister prevention is critical and can make the difference in your match. Here are some other tips:
- Use a tennis towel to dry your hands and grip between games and sets.
- Wear a sweat band on your forearm or wrist to keep sweat from dripping onto your hand.
Tips for Treating Hand Blisters
When you do get a hand blister, follow these steps: (1) thoroughly cleanse the area, (2) remove damaged tissue from the wound (aka debridement), and (3) dress the wound in adhesive gauze or a hydrocolloid bandage. There are many different cleansing techniques and debridement methods. Athletic trainers usually recommend hydrotherapy, which involves submerging your hand and blister in 100-degree water for 20 minutes. By implementing these tips, you will decrease the risk of infection and bolster a quicker healing process.
The main causes of hand blisters are excess sweat and an improper grip size. Tennis Express can help with our complete grip guide and high-quality products that will keep sweat at bay. We have a plethora of tennis grips as well as grip enhancers to absorb sweat and prevent blisters so you can focus on improving your game. Head over to TennisExpress.com now!