A Blistering Problem

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As a dirt bike rider, gripping those handlebars and twisting that throttle can often lead to painful blisters. While they’re never fun and can often be a pain to take care of, you’ll eventually have one and have to deal with it. In this week’s article brought to you by EVS, we’ll tell you how blisters form, common causes, prevention and basic care. Strap on those gloves and read on!

Ouch!

Blisters are fluid shells on the surface of the skin (often found on the palm of your hand or foot). Most blisters are from irritation or other damage to the skin from some type of external source. Brief, intense contact is usually the main culprit in causing blisters. A blister can range from pinpoint size to more than « an inch in diameter. In addition, blisters can cause pain, redness or itching, all depending on how the blister was caused.

Common Causes

Blisters usually form when the skin is repeatedly rubbed; for instance, when your boots keep rubbing on the same spot on your foot, if your boots don’t fit properly or when you wear any type of shoes without the proper socks (or any socks at all). Riding with gloves that are too loose can also cause blisters on the palm of your hands.

Treatment

In some cases, it’s perfectly fine to pop a blister. For example, if it is large, painful or likely to be irritated further, it’s ok to go ahead and pop it. However, if you don’t have to, it’s recommended that you don’t. The reason behind this is because the skin covering the blister helps protect it from any type of infection and promotes healing. New skin will eventually form underneath the affected area and the fluid will simply be absorbed. The nice thing about blisters is that most can be treated at home and do not require any medical attention whatsoever. In order to help your blister heal in a timely fashion, the following steps should help.

  • Gently wash the area with mild soap and water (or a cleansing towel)

  • Apply an antibacterial cream or bacitracin ointment to the blister

  • Cover it with gauze

  • Secure the gauze with hypoallergenic tape to protect the skin and prevent infection

  • Change the gauze and tape at least once a day

Prevention

There are a number of preventative measures you can take in order to stop a blister from even occurring. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

  • Wear riding boots that fit properly (make sure to buy these from a dealer where you can try them on in person)

  • Break in new boots while practicing, not during a race

  • Wear high-quality socks with your boots (polyester or acrylic fiber socks are great for low-friction and will actually prevent blisters)

  • Wash and dry your feet after every moto session

  • Place a bandage over the part of your foot or hand that is the most likely to get a blister

  • Wear protective gloves at all times when on the bike

  • Gradually break in the gloves during practice sessions, not during a race

Tips to Help

If you’ve never had a blister in your life, consider yourself lucky. But if you have and are looking for a few ways to avoid them, then follow these simple steps and you should be ready to throw a leg over your bike and twist that throttle in no time at all!

  • Tape, tape, tape – for added protection beyond your riding gloves and socks, use elastic sports tape on your hands and feet

  • If your hands and feet tend to become dry and sore easily, make sure to moisturize with lotion on a daily basis

  • Make your hands tough – by training them to do hardcore things day in and day out, this will definitely help in the long run

  • Keep them dry – sweaty palms and feet are more susceptible to blisters, so make sure to keep an extra pair of dry gloves and socks with you at all times

Until Next Time

Stay tuned for more safety tips in next week’s article. Now strap on those dry boots and gloves, tape up those hands and feet and go ride!

EVS ? Winning with Safety”

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