As you become more and more powerful in your punching ability...
Certain parts of your body find it difficult to "keep up". I have found that my body can generate punching force that my wrists and knuckles just can't handle.
Wrist wraps are a simple way to protect your wrist and hand by adding some extra support. This allows you to train full speed, and by throwing a LOT of punches, as hard as you can, you will build a level of power that some might call "frightening".
Now you need to be careful with this... by putting on big old fat gloves and wrapping the hell out of your wrists, you end up with a FALSE idea of how hard you can get away with punching. Then, when you find yourself in a street fight with no wraps and no gloves, you swing for the fences, and destroy your hand. It's more common than you think.
Still, you need to punch as hard as you can at times, and you need to be able to train this way safely. Wrapping your hands makes that possible... you just need to do some extra training without protection so you can learn how to "taper" your punches off, and strike at a level of power that won't leave you injured.
Taking all of that into consideration, here are the wraps that I recommend... my reasons for the recommendation are below.
Now here are the three criteria that matter when it comes to your hand wraps:
1. I DESPISE elastic wraps. Anything that stretches is garbage as far as I'm concerned. You can't get a tight wrap without creating a lasting suffocating pressure on your hands that will force them to fatigue and burn after a few minutes of making a fist. NON-elastic wraps (like the ones that I recommend) end up feeling like a cast. They are solid, and don't end up creating a residual shrinking pressure, which will fatigue your hands, and prevent you from making a proper fist.
2. You need a minimum of 180 inches in a hand wrap. Whenever people buy wraps from a general sporting goods store, they always end up with thin, crappy, 100 or so inch wraps... that's about HALF of what you need. The more times you wrap around your knuckles and your wrists, the more support you have. Length in your wraps keeps you safer.
3. The velcro should be just as wide as your wrap. Little velcro strips come undone, and after a few years, they will tear right off the wrap. Most times, they actually tear halfway off the wrap, and then you have to fumble to split the velcro apart, every time you want to take your wraps off. I hate when that happens.
This is everything that you really need to know about hand-wraps... other than how to actually wrap your hands, which is a video that I should make at some point soon.