T Nation

Wrist/Hand Problems


I kinda messed up my wrist/hand while hitting the heavy bag a few days ago(i think im donig my left hook wrong on the bag). I gave it 3 days of rest without touching any bags or anything but it still hurts when i punch the bag now. Doesn't bother me when im not punching or when i spar.

Anything i can do to speed up the recovery and to also prevent any future ones?


How are you throwing your left hook? If you can give me a description, perhaps I'll be able to let you know if your technique is the problem. I doubt it is a hand wrap issue because you only have wrist/hand issues when throwing the left hook. Hence, I think your technique might be the issue.

I recently had an indentation on my middle knuckle and it was hurting for like 2 weeks when I throw the jab only. I recently started doing cold/hot baths for recovery and my knuckle pain is gone now. Give it a try.


Where is the pain?

In terms of protecting your hands/wrists:

1) Learn how to properly wrap your hands and wear 16oz gloves when really going for power on the heavy bag

2) Don't try to hit really hard until you know you can do it right


When i throw my left hook on the heavy bag i keep my palms facing down and my elbow straight(flat) and i turn my torso to throw it . Kinda confused tho i see everyone in my gym and even in pro boxer videos throwing the left hook on the heavy bag with their palms in nuetral position . I forgot to mention i get the same problem when i throw a hard uppercut on the upper cut bag. Maybe its because my wrists are really small?

To sento the pain is around the middle of my hand more towards the pinky side. Also now that i think about it when i messed up my hand i was using really crap gloves that say they were 16 oz but felt wayyyy lighter and the padding inside was really messed up. Maybe i should invest on buying my own high quality gloves.


Definitely use good gloves. Can you get a video of yourself doing some bagwork, especially with the hook?


Probably not a bad idea. Remember that gloves were invented to protect the puncher's hands (to prolong boxing matches), not to protect the other guy's/gal's head.

It sounds like you might be either off on your wrist alignment, or you are landing too much with the pinky and ring metacarpals (knuckles).

When you are throwing your left hook, is it a circular type of movement, or more of an angled straight movement? Keep in mind that the horizontal/palm down hook is a close range, very tight sharp angular punch. The aim should be to hit through the center of gravity of the target (be it bag or opponent's head/body), and not to "rip"/"ice pick" through/off it. You can kind of think of it as a very short, angled power jab, but with much more rotation (much of the power comes from the rotational weight shift when hooking, while stepping can also contribute).

The vertical/thumb up hook on the other hand is a more effective long range type of hook that actually follows a circular arch to and through the target. The vertical fist orientation allows better alignment of the knuckles on the target at distance (flexing the wrist aids in this). While this punch can still hit through the target's center of gravity it is generally more often used to "rip"/"ice pick" when thrown to the body, or to attempt to spin the head when directed at the chin.

If you are in tight (to the bag or opponent), then just pick whichever style of hook you feel works better for you (or, once you get more experienced, which is the correct style for the opening that you are trying to exploit). When you are at a distance though, I'd stick with either a jab, or the vertical fist/circular hook.