The running item that I’m going to share with you today is awesome not just because of how well it works and how useful it is, but also because the story behind how it came to be is so inspiring. The item is the handana: basically what it sounds like from the name, a sort of “bandana” that you wear on your hand. The purpose of it is to be an easy way to wipe off sweat while you run. It’s comfortable and great for any sport that will get you sweaty (but especially running!). It works much better than typical wrist bands or sweatbands.
I haven’t seen anything else like this product out there, and the way that it was born is truly an inspiring story. The creator of the handana, Katie Niemeyer, got a rare disease called Stevens-Johnson Syndrome at just the age of 16. It’s the result of an adverse reaction to medication, and it causes rashes and blisters all over the skin, swelling of the eyes, flu-like symptoms, and more. It can be fatal. In Katie’s case she came down with the syndrome 3 weeks after starting a new medication, and was soon admitted to the burns unit of the hospital when her body had rashes and blisters that were classified as 2nd and 3rd degree burns. The picture below will show you just how serious this was, but it is not for the squeamish.
Luckily, Katie survived, and jumped back into fitness training. However, due to the SJS she was still very sensitive to certain things, and one of the most sensitive parts of her body was her eyes. When sweat dripped into them it really burned, and while sweatbands helped a little it still wasn’t enough – and that’s when the idea for the handana came about. It was a great way to wipe away the sweat while running, and helped Katie complete a marathon!
I also like how it looks. It’s simple but fashionable, and it comes in a variety of colors. I definitely want to purchase a couple more so that I can have them to go with different outfits, and to match my costumes for the Disney races! It’s very comfortable so that I hardly even noticed I was wearing it. The fabric is thin but still strong. It doesn’t feel bulky or in the way at all, and you can still easily use your hand while running for whatever you need – checking your phone, holding a water bottle, etc.
For Disney runners I imagine having a handana will be super useful, because as you probably know it can get very warm down in Florida! Overall I think this is a really great product, and one that I’m happy to support. I think Katie’s story is truly inspiring for women everywhere, and I hope lots of Disney runners out there will support her by checking out the website!
But you can get your own Handana! We’re hosting a giveaway to win a gift certificate to the site, which will allow you to pick out your very own handana in whatever color you like! All you have to do to enter is fill out the rafflecopter form below. Giveaway ends Friday, June 13th at midnight.
Also make sure you take a look at all the other items we have in the Disney Running Gear Guide: