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So, with the glory of summer newly upon us, I am able once again to resume firedancing and practicing out of doors. I took almost six months off from my short staves, 2" dia. rods about the length of an arm, focusing mainly on fingerwork (lighter, shorter rods and doable inside). As a side effect, the heavy callouses on the insides of my thumbs and forefingers have all but vanished, and so starting up again is blistering the skin there.
Now ordinarily, I wouldn't really care. I'd just work them until they tore a bit, even the wear by changing technique, and switching out to other position completely to avoid problem areas. I'm wondering though if there's a better way. (and also less socially obvious than torn up hands) I was thinking of covering starter blisters with tape or something to let them heal and still practice. I'm still warming up on fundamentals after my time off, so I work those areas heavily, sort of unavoidable for this first stretch. My second thought though, was whether or not the callouses would still form properly if they are not being worked.
Does anybody have experience with this? And also perhaps how to keep the skin soft, so you can have the tough spots there without them becoming dry and rough? It would be great to have some pointers for this.