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What is honey used for? In gymnastics, it’s mostly the men using it.

While the women competed in Tokyo, viewers watching NBC’s tape-delayed coverage of men’s gymnastics might have noticed honey bottles near the parallel bars.

Men use the honey as a gripping agent: They squeeze it onto their palms, rub their hands together and then dust up both hands with chalk before grasping the bars.

Honey, however, is rarely used by the women, who do not compete on the parallel bars. On the uneven bars, though, stickiness is helpful, and instead they use spray water and use chalk on the bars, and wear leather grips, for more stability.


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