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Skinny handles vs. Fat handles

IlivetoskiIlivetoski Posts: 1,186 Crazy Baller
What are the advantages of each? I have heard that a fat handle can help with elbow pain, but is there anything other than that aside from preference?


  • brettmainerbrettmainer Posts: 281 Crazy Baller
    Small hands use skinny handles. Big hands use fat handles. Too big is hard to hold on to under full load and strains the grip (forearms). Too small hurts and, for big strong skiers with a close grip, increases the chance of bending/breaking the handle, although it's been a long time since I've seen somebody bend a handle.

    For what it's worth, I have average man hands and use 1.03".
  • Mike GileMike Gile Posts: 341 Crazy Baller
    I feel like a fatter handle makes keeps me from pulling too hard and is easier on my hands. The skinny ones make me more aggro for some reason.

    I'm using a Masterline 1.062 and thinking of going bigger.
  • hemlockhemlock Posts: 165 Baller
    Good post.
    I begin to wonder how different skiers hold the handle?
    Do you grip it in your palm? or do you grip it at the bottom of your fingers?

    I have a fairly thick handle and have always held the handle in my palm.
    The more I ski, the more callus I get, and the more chance I have for ripping my hand up.
    (That is the damage your hand and be out of commission for a week)

    Last year, I tried holding the handle more in my fingers and less in the palm and it seemed to help with less damage to my hands, but I wonder if I should have a skinnier handle or not?

  • greghayesgreghayes Posts: 113 Baller
    I've always had better luck with a fatter handle - 1.04 or greater - less blistering, etc. My tween/teen kids even like my handles. FWIW.
  • 94009400 Posts: 630 Crazy Baller
    Our water gets to 95+ in the middle of the summer, when we ski a lot you either might want tape or liners and I hated wearing liners. I went to a fatter handle to disperse the wear on my hands. I prefer a 1.125" which feels a little big until it gets some wear on it.
    I don't have big hands (wear extra small gloves in most brands). I'm with @greghayes, less blistering. My current brand new handle is a 1.09" as my 1 year old 1.125 handle needs restringing. Smaller handles make my hands hurt more.
  • ScottScottScottScott Posts: 958 Mega Baller
    Most people will recommend a larger diameter, I actually switched to a smaller and its working for me. In general the larger is better for calluses and blisters, larger also better for tendinitis (other things like altering handles of different sizesand the curved handles also help with tendinitis.) I was using a 1.03 but then added palm protectors to address the blisters, but the resulting larger grip fatigued my hands and forearms. Switched to 1" and I'm liking it. I may grip too tight but for now its working for me. Tendinitis isn't a big problem for me at this point.
  • skihackerskihacker Posts: 358 Solid Baller
    I definitely have a king kong death grip habit I have never been able to fix. I've been using masterline's biggest handle for years and love it. It's 1.183, the d3 blue liners keep me from getting my hands blistered up. I rotate between a straight and bent handle and haven't had elbow problems for a long time.
  • JohnCoxJohnCox Posts: 357 Crazy Baller
    I used to have elbow issues and a friend suggested that I alternate handle size. I also put on a dry pair of gloves each set. So, when I'm skiing a lot, I use a 1.03" one set, and 1.062" on the other, with fresh gloves each set. Seems to have helped save my hands, ease the injuries on elbows, and extend glove life.
    Mapple T2
  • HortonHorton Posts: 28,926 Administrator
    The rule I have lived by for more than 30 years is as follows. The smaller the diameter of the handle the harder it will be on your palms. The larger the diameter the more forearm strength you will use. You can over work your forearms.

    Thicker gloves have the same effect as a thicker handle.

    I exclusively use 1.0" handles. That is the size that works for me.
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  • The_MSThe_MS Posts: 5,584 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    edited May 2017
    I use Med or Lg gloves depending on the make. I like the .950 which is not a common bar on most makes. I think Brenda (in-Tow) can grind you any size. I cant get my fingers around anything bigger then .980
    Shut up and ski
  • RazorRoss3RazorRoss3 Posts: 1,356 Mega Baller
    edited May 2017
    @MS, it is all I can do to hold off the "little hands" jokes right now.

    I go with a 1.033, feels like it locks in to the curve of my fingers well and all I have to do is hold on. Never worried it's going to pop and don't have to over grip like I do with more narrow handles.
  • spicolispicoli Posts: 127 Baller
    I used small for yrs then I went to 1.62 and all my Calis pain went away I also noticed that a 1.62 lasted twice as long before I wore it to the metal making me believe that the smaller u go the more rubber they true off and all have same diameter tube in center .
  • spicolispicoli Posts: 127 Baller
    Here's a money saving tip when you decide fat or skinny don't by from usgear
  • gt2003gt2003 Posts: 726 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Thank you @RazorRoss3 , I was wanting to but figured one of you all that if tighter with him would chime in soon enough!
    2014 HO TX
    1996 Malibu Echelon
  • lakeaustinskierlakeaustinskier Posts: 362 Solid Baller
    Its not just the handle. Glove fit and whether you use liners are considerations. I personally hate liners. Too much padding for me. The best advice I ever received to prevent sore hands was to use tighter/smaller gloves. When the gloves are new and DRY it should be almost impossible to get them on but when wet I can wiggle my hands in. After a few sets the new gloves loosen up for a perfect tight fit.
    Ted Thomson, Austin Texas, Aquaplex
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 785 Crazy Baller
    I use clinchers.
    Rotate brands and sizes and individuals.
    One can use slighetly smaller handle with clinchers.
    I use mostely ML Team Monster Handle 1.00 " and Radar prolocks Size L to XL.
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • ShererSkierShererSkier Posts: 139 Baller
    I've tried a few different handle sizes but prefer smaller diameter. A balance between tearing you hands up and wearing your forearms out all while feeling like I have a solid grip is what I was after. I also wrap my calluses and my fingers between the 1st and 2nd knuckle with waterproof medical tape, then gloves over the top. I'm using ML ergo anti-roll 1" handle right now with radar boa M gloves. Gloves are hard going on when dry.

    Since I've started that, I can run the course all morning and not have to worry about my grip or strength. Just my 2 cents.
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