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If you’re working out in your non-heated garage in cold weather, lifting with a steel barbell starts to become extremely uncomfortable. There is also a risk of serious adverse effects, such as screaming barfies (explained later) or even frostbites (in rare cases)
Most lifting gloves are actually NOT made for cold weather. They are designed specifically for heated gym environments.
As such, what you’re going to notice with all of the lifting gloves I recommend for cold weather is that they’re not actually lifting gloves. They are gloves designed for other activities, like golf or ice climbing, which can naturally take place in colder environments.
But, no matter how unconventional these alternative gloves might seem for the purposes of lifting weights, after testing them on a cold barbell, they perform extremely well. I would know because I live in Canada and have been lifting all winter in my garage with nothing more than a space heater.
So what is the best lifting gloves for cold weather? The best lifting glove for cold weather is the BIONIC StableGrip Golf Glove. The challenge in finding a warm lifting glove is that you need to balance the “thickness” of the glove with the tactile sensation of the barbell. The Bionic StableGrip Golf Glove has struck this balance the best out of any of the three lifting gloves I tested.
If you want to know more about weightlifting in the cold, or how to pick the ideal one for your needs, keep on reading!
Top 3 Lifting Gloves for Cold Weather Available in the Market
The BIONIC StableGrip is originally meant for playing golf. However, its specifications make it ideal for a lifter who is trying to maintain their hand warmth while lifting in their garage.
This glove is made of genuine Cabretta leather, which is great because it offers excellent protection against calluses and insulation against the cold barbell without being too thick.
One of the most common issues for golfers is the lack of grip while wearing their gloves. This glove is created with a patented design that solves the “lack of grip” problem, so it allows you to secure your grip over the barbell while staying warm.
The lycra mesh layer between the fingers and knuckles is also great for allowing for hand ventilation to prevent the accumulation of sweat inside the gloves. If your hands sweat, and you’re in a cold environment, you’re going to have frozen fingertips in no time.
The glove is also machine washable and durable enough to last you for a good while without showing signs of wear and tear.
- Balances between providing warmth and staying relatively thin
- Breathable and won’t accumulate sweat
- Offers excellent grip over the barbell
- Affordable price
- Tactile sensation could be better, but I’d rather have my hands warm on cold, winter days
If you live up north where temperatures could fall far below freezing points with no proper heating where you workout, you need to look for the warmest glove possible to prevent all the problems that come with touching cold metal, such as screaming barfies and frostbites.
The Black Diamond Equipment Transition Glove is originally designed for ice climbing and skiing so that you’re able to hold on firmly to the ice-cold equipment without suffering from how cold it is. This makes it a handy option if you’re looking for a lifting glove option for the coldest climates.
One of the greatest bonuses that you get from buying this glove is that they’re incredibly rugged and will take a lot of beating without ever showing signs of wear and tear. The fact that they would last you for a lifetime is one of the few things that justifies its price.
On the drawback side, you should keep in mind that the warmer the glove, the more layers it has, and this one is no exception. It’s quite thick, so you’ll have to squeeze on harder to the barbell to secure a locked grip on it.
- Extremely durable construction that will last for long years
- Provides an excellent level of warmth
- They run a bit small, which is good news if you use them for lifting
- They’re quite thick
If the weather is cold but not too cold that you have to find the thickest glove out there, you might want to look for a full-length glove that can maintain your tactile sensation over the barbell.
In that case, football receiver gloves would get the job right because these gloves are built to allow you to grip the ball out of the air. So, it’s pretty easy for anyone to also grip a barbell without needing to squeeze so hard.
The glove is made of synthetic fabrics that also provide decent durability and comes in a huge variety of colors.
Moreover, it features wrist support, which is pretty essential for stabilizing your hands and wrist while doing powerlifting moves like deadlifts and squats.
- Provides excellent grip
- Available in a variety of colors
- Comes with a built-in wrist support
- Won’t be suitable for extremely cold weather
Main Features: What to Look for When Buying Lifting Gloves for Cold Weather
From a weightlifting perspective, a standard lifting glove’s function is more about protection from calluses than from cold. For that reason, the aspects you need to keep in mind while choosing a lifting glove for cold weather are somewhat different.
Here’s a brief overview of everything you should know in order to land the best lifting glove for your needs:
Regular lifting gloves are usually made of leather, whether it’s genuine or synthetic. It can also be made of microfiber, cotton, or neoprene.
If you’re buying a glove to sustain warmth during cold weather, you should avoid the cotton and microfiber ones because they’re only suitable for mild weather. Instead, you should always seek a leather or synthetic fabric glove.
These gloves retain warmth inside and act as an excellent barrier between your hands and the freezing cold barbell without being too thick that it affects your grip.
The Glove’s Thickness
One of the most important aspects of any lifting glove you’ll buy is the thickness. Ideally, you need a minimally thick glove that will just prevent calluses and blisters.
However, in extreme cold, the glove also needs to be a proper insulator against the cold weather.
For that reason, you need to look for a slightly thicker than usual glove that will still provide a decent grip of the barbell.
The Glove’s Coverage
Most lifting gloves on the market are 1/2 or 2/3 finger design so that they can maintain as much tactile sensation of the barbell as possible.
This tactile sensation helps you focus all your squeezing power to secure the barbell grip and also puts you into the mindset of lifting. For that reason, it’s uncommon for a lifter to use a full-finger design glove while lifting weights.
If you’re lifting in an extremely cold climate with no heating system installed, you should make sure that your fingers don’t come in direct contact with the barbell as much as you possibly can. That’s why all the gloves I recommend in this guide are full-finger designs.
If you have a smaller than average hand size, then check out my article on the 5 Best Lifting Gloves For Small Hands.
One of the most essential features that add to the value of a lifting glove is the presence of built-in wrist support that you can adjust to help you lift more weight.
This happens by stabilizing your wrist and limiting its range of motion. Ideally, a good lifting glove for cold weather should also provide some sort of wrist support for added functionality.
Check out my complete review of the best lifting gloves with wrist support.
The colder the weather, the thicker the glove, and therefore, the more likely it can slip right out of your grip.
One of the most brilliant ways to make up for the reduced grip strength with thick gloves is to look for gloves with a slip-resistant inner design.
These gloves come with patterns and materials that offer high traction to keep the barbell contained within your grip.
What to Avoid When Getting Lifting Gloves for Cold Weather
There are some features and design specifications that aren’t recommended for lifters if they’re lifting in cold weather.
For example, always avoid materials that don’t provide much insulation for their density because they’d be so thick that you’d lose your grip on the barbell.
Also, avoid gloves that won’t allow you to move your fingers freely and comfortably, such as skiing gloves.
You should also avoid lifting in cold-weather gloves that are made of wool or cotton because they’re quite slippery and can cause an accident.
Other Workout Tips for Cold Weather Lifting
Now that you know everything you need about lifting in cold weather while maintaining your hand warmth, here are some extra tips to make things easier for you while lifting:
- Always start by warming up before lifting to warm up your muscles
- Keep yourself warm by staying active and avoid long rests
- Use a radiator or a heater to warm up the workout area
- Apply hair dryer to warm up the barbell
- Layer your clothes to stay warm
- If possible, transfer the barbell and gym equipment into a warmer area at night.
Check out my other article on the 10 Best Women’s Workout Gloves.
With that said, you now have a better idea about the best lifting gloves for cold weather. As you can see, in the case of extreme cold, regular lifting gloves won’t work well, so you have to look for suitable alternatives.
In my opinion, the most suitable balance with the least compromises comes with the BIONIC Gloves StableGrip Golf Glove. This glove will keep your hands warm and insulated from the cold barbell while maintaining a somewhat acceptable tactile sensation.
However, if you’re prioritizing one over the other, then you should consider the other options, which are Black Diamond Equipment Transition Gloves for maximum warmth or Adidas Adizero 9.0 Football Receiver Gloves for maintaining reasonable tactile sensation.