A wrist support helps protect the wrist during a gymnast's extensive training, or it can be used to allow the wrist to heal after injury. It offers a layer of protection to the hand and improves the gymnast's grip on the vault and bars.
Because gymnastics requires the extensive use of the hands and wrists, gymnasts often experience small tears on the palms of their hands or fractures in their wrists. Even beginning gymnasts are encouraged to wear wrist supports or braces to protect the wrists from injuries. Artistic gymnasts wear wrist guards that aid in absorbing some of the impact. Some wrist supports are made from absorbent materials like cotton and are used primarily to wipe away sweat during training or a performance.