It’s one of the fun parts of CrossFit. It makes you feel like a badass, right? The slow saunter over to the bucket – you’re feeling a little John Wayne meets Gangster gunslinger. The silky feel of the chalk on your hand that is about to help you achieve a new PR (personal record)…oh you can taste it, right?
Well, with every accessory in our gym comes responsibility. Whether it’s your jump rope, your knee wraps, or yes, your use of chalk, be prepared to be asked to have some knowledge of “chalk etiquette”.
- Our Box Rules (coming soon) include chalk etiquette: It used to be Rule #9 reading “Use Chalk Over Bucket”. In fact, Coach Tracy earned her nickname at Rebels (#9) by taking a hunk of chalk OUT OF THE BUCKET and carrying it to her rack…hilarious! In other words, put your hands in the bucket, rub chalk between your hand IN THE BUCKET, and then clap them together IN THE BUCKET. Easy enough right?
- Do not take chalk blocks out of the bucket to your “station” or workout area. Blocks remain in the buckets at all times.
- Weightlifting Chalk is different than blackboard chalk, and baby powder talc. Don’t try to mix it up!
- It’s called “Chalk”, not powder 😂.
- A fine layer of chalk between your hands and the barrel,l or pull-up bar, or rings helps you achieve a stronger grip by soaking up perspiration from your hands.
- Chalk buckets…they’re not yours! We “share” the chalk bucket in the box. Please don’t consider this “your” personal chalk bucket for your class.
- Sweaters. No, not Christmas sweater, but people who sweat – a lot. We live in Florida, folks! It’s hot and you’re going to sweat. If you’re pouring out sweat and hanging on the pull up bar, doing ring rows, or high rep/heavy cleans or deadlifts, no amount of chalk is going to keep the sweat from running down your arms to your palms. Consider sweatbands, as corny as that might sound. Excessive chalk + excessive sweat = paste, and this defeats the purpose of chalk.
- Chalking hands is typically for PULLING MOVEMENTS: barbell or dumbbell deadlifts, cleans, snatches, and pull-up bar or ring work. Chalking your hands for pushups and presses…kind of makes you look like a goof. If you’re wall-walking and sweating, yea…we can see this as beneficial.
- The only thing we chalk is our hands…and sometimes we’ve been known to chalk our grips if the bar is wet. But we don’t chalk our feet, shoes, the barbell, the pull-up bar, the dumbbells, or the Dballs…we chalk our HANDS…say it with me…WE CHALK OUR HANDS.
- Clean up your chalk mess after the WOD: barbells, handprints on the floor, whatever. Cleaning up your mess after a WOD is common courtesy. Spray bottle + rag = success.
- Try not to use a trip to the chalk bucket like a trip to the water fountain during a WOD: as a rest break. Others may legitimately need the chalk bucket – use it only when needed.
- If there is chalk in a bucket – use it. There doesn’t have to be a chalk block in the bucket to be effective. Chalk blocks break down into fine chalk silt. That is fine – if the chalk bucket is empty, please ask a coach and he/she will get you more chalk.
We’re lucky. Many gyms won’t let athletes use chalk because it creates a mess. We understand the value of chalk but also need your help in controlling the mess it creates.