Friction Blisters

Preventing Friction Blisters

It doesn't take much to prevent blisters. It's really all about your shoes, socks and moisture -- though blisters aren't relegated just to feet. Anyone whose worn gloves swing a bat over and over again can attest to the formation of friction blisters on their hands. So when it comes to sports - or even just day-to-day life -- how do you prevent blisters?

John Wooden is considered by many to be one of the greatest coaches of all time. He coached the UCLA men's basketball team from 1948 to 1975, and during that time they won 10 national championships. The secret to his success was the way he made his players put their socks on. OK -- that's not the entire secret -- but it did greatly reduce the number of blisters that his players had to endure. He would teach players to smooth out all the wrinkles in their socks, especially around the toes and heel where blisters commonly form. He also stressed the importance of wearing the right size shoe [source: ESPN]. We can all learn a thing or two from John Wooden. A couple extra minutes with your shoes and socks in the morning could save you from a lot of painful blisters.

You should also keep these helpful tips in mind. First, if your blisters are a result of ill-fitting shoes, discontinue use and buy shoes that fit properly. To ensure a proper fit, wear the same type of socks or hose you would normally wear with the shoe, try on both shoes and check that you can wiggle your toes. Also, try to shoe-shop in the afternoon, the time of day when feet tend to swell. Keep your feet dry, and if heavy sweating is eminent, avoid cotton socks, which trap moisture. If your blisters tend to form in places other than your feet, like your hands, be sure to wear gloves when you're doing something repetitive, like raking a yard or lifting weights [sources: WebMD, Mayo Clinic].

So what do you do if you've failed to prevent a friction blister? Read on to learn about treating these stubborn skin formations.