Gym chalk is an essential tool in every powerlifter, strongman and gymnasts gym bag.
But what is it? How does it work? Why should you use it and where can you buy it from?
Well, we tell all in this article.
Gym chalk, lifting chalk or liquid chalk are all essentially variations of the same product used by weightlifters and other athletes to reduce moisture on the hands and improve grip performance.
Gym chalk is manufactured from a single compound, magnesium carbonate, which is insoluble in water.
Essentially, this means that your hands when using chalk remain dry and it helps you to continue to grip the bar, boulder, axle or whatever it may be that you need to grip, without slipping due to sweat or moisture on your hands.
Different brands utilise different additions to improve the “sticky” nature or dryness of the standard chalk, depending upon your use case, that’s worth looking into.
But, if you’re not wanting straps, and you’re in the market for something to assist your grip, then chalk is the one for you.
Essentially it depends on what type of chalk you buy, but for the most part, you’ll either be using normal chalk or liquid chalk.
For regular chalk, just rub the chalk together in your hands and you’ll form the same type of textured surface on your hands as the chalk product itself. Apply over a bucket so you don’t get mess everywhere (gym owners pet peeve) and either rub on your palms or your palms together until you get the desired feel.
For liquid chalk, apply a small amount and rub into your hands, you’ll probably need to re-apply between each lift however and if you do a lot of deadlifting etc this can become expensive!
Above all, check with your gym owner as to their preference, some gyms say no in total to chalk, some will accept if you wipe down equipment and clean up after use, some will allow use no matter. But best to check and observe good gym etiquette.
In reality, any climbing shop, sports store or online retailer will generally be able to supply you with gym chalk. But here’s our go to options;
Or for a top quality, low frills chalk block, the climbing shop has got you covered! Cheap and so easy to use