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Review: Nubs Thumb Sleeves

nubs thumb sleeve

This week we take a moment to review Nubs Thumb Sleeves by JerkFit, designed to protect your thumbs during functional fitness training.

Item: Nubs thumb Sleeves
$9.95 USD

Retailer: Jerkfit

When it comes to protecting your hands and fingers during CrossFit training, there is an abundance of available options in the market.

Tape, gloves, grips and chalk are just some of the many things athletes use to prevent their hands and fingers from tearing during workout.

I really thought i’d come across all of them, until I was introduced to Nubs.

Nubs are small, elastic thumb sleeves, designed to protect your hands while training. Basically, you slip the small sleeves over your thumbs before a workout, to stop them from tearing or chafing.

According to their website:

“With Nubs, there’s no more dealing with bunched-up, sweaty tape that falls off mid-WOD and leaves your skin and equipment sticky. If you’ve never used them, you’re missing out! Nubs are Hand-made in the USA from high-quality latex-free elastic material that fits snugly on your thumbs. These hook-grip helpers drastically reduce friction, absorb sweat, and have a comfortable padded feel that locks in your grip! Designed to stay in place during a workout, Nubs are also easy to put on. They absorb chalk, are washable, and stay virtually dry for your entire WOD. Make your thumbs happy!”

Being an athlete who doesn’t use gloves during training, and really only uses tape on occasions, I was bit skeptical about how effective these Nubs would be.

So, I decided to put them to the test, wearing them regularly in my CrossFit training over the past fortnight. Here are my thoughts on Nubs and whether The Rx Review believes they are a worthwhile purchase:

nubs thumb sleeve

The Good

It works: The Nubs do what they claim to – protect your hands and thumbs! I used Nubs during weightlifting and found them particularly useful during any hook grip movements. Personally, my thumbs seem to tear a bit on the inside during heavy snatching. However, when wearing the Nubs, I didn’t experience any tears of chafing.

Convenience: Taping your hands or fingers can be a tedious process. Especially when you are short on time or by yourself. Nubs are so simple to use. You just squeeze them on over your thumbs, and away you go! Fast, efficient and convenient!

Durable: During the two weeks i’ve been using Nubs, I haven’t noticed any damage to the sleeves. Made from latex-free elastic material, the sleeves are also stitched well and seem to stay secure on your thumbs while training. I didn’t find them slipping or, or off, during any movement or workout.

Easy to Carry and Wash: These Nubs are small and easy to cram into any gym bag. In addition, they are so easy to wash. You can thrown them in the washing machine with your clothes if you want, or just use your hands to ensure all that sweat and dirt come out.

Chalk Friendly: If you’re a chalk fan like I am, don’t fear! Nubs are more than chalk-friendly, so feel free to chalk up your hands while wearing these sleeves.

Can Be Used on Other Fingers: I also used the Nubs on some of my other fingers that often tear and found they are also great to use on them. In particular, my ring fingers seem to tear more than others, so during one workout with many pull-ups, I slipped the sleeves onto my ring fingers and they did a great job of preventing any tears.

Cheap: Selling for just $9.95 USD, Nubs are definitely affordable and cheap. Considering a roll of decent tape can cost that price, these thumb sleeves are definitely a value purchase if you plan on using them regularly.

numbs thumb sleeve 3

The Bad

A little Restrictive: While I enjoyed using the Nubs thumb sleeves, I did find them just a tiny bit restrictive. By no means did it affect my performance during any movement or workout, but I did find my range of motion in my thumbs was restricted just a little. And a little bit more than I experience while taping.

A Bit Tight: I used the sizing chart and trained with the Large sized Nubs (largest size available). While it was the largest size available I did find it a little hard to get onto my thumbs and a bit tighter than I would have liked. It would be good to maybe see an XL size available for those with bigger thumbs!


Overall, I can’t fault Nubs too much.

They do what they claim to do, which is protect your thumbs and hands. And they also do it through a simple product that is easy to carry, wear and train in.

Putting the Nubs thumb sleeves on are faster than any taping. They are also easy to carry, easy to wash and are also quite affordable.

While I did find them a little restrictive at times, on most occasions during training i don’t even notice i’m wearing them.

For what they are worth ($9.95 USD at time of publishing), I think Nubs thumb sleeves are a great addition to any functional fitness athletes gym bag, and a great way to protect your hands and thumbs!

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The Rx Review is an independent fitness website, reporting on the Sport of Fitness, functional fitness news, The CrossFit Games, health and diet related information, and also provides reviews on sports performance products.