Types of Gymnastics Chalk

Gymnastics chalk is used to absorb moisture (sweat) and to improve grip. In gymnastics, athletes use chalk not on their hands, and also on their legs for certain events. This article will explain the purpose of chalk in gymnastics, explain the types of chalk available for this use and provide links to where to purchase online.


Gymnasts  and athletes use chalk to absorb sweat and improve the grip. In gymnastics, chalk is used for the pummel horse, ring and bars, and on the high bar and uneven parallel bars. Chalk us used on the legs when competing on the high and uneven parallel bars.

Types of Gymnastics Chalk

Chalk for gymnastics is made up of a naturally occurring white mineral called magnesium carbonate (MgCO3). Magnesium carbonate is different from the material used in sidewalk chalk or blackboard chalk. It is not like baby powder either. Although baby power absorbs moisture, it decreases friction so it weakens the grip.

Gymnastics chalk is manufactured in three forms: as a liquid, as a block similar to a bar of soap, and as powder. To find out more information or to purchase, please click on the photos or on the highlighted words below.

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Liquid gymnastics chalk

Liquid chalk becomes solid once it’s applied and is legal in all forms of competition.

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Gymnastic chalk block

Block gymnastics chalk breaks up into powder once it’s applied.

Powdered chalk is the messiest, but there are solutions like this chalk sack:

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Chalk ball with powdered chalk
gymnastics chalk powder, powdered chalk gymnastics
Gymnastics Chalk Powder

This powdered chalk can be purchased here.

Use in Other Sports

Other sports that require the athlete to have good grip also use magnesium carbonate. These sports include rock climbing, power lifting, Olympic lifting, strongman lifting, and field sports such as discus throw, hammer throw, javelin throw, and shut put. In fact, any sport where grip is important can benefit from chalk.