Get a Grip!
How to develop bone crushing grip strength for sports domination!
Grip strength is an often overlooked fundamental of strength training. Yet in many workouts, especially in the deadlift and heavy rowing exercises, the strength of your grip is often the limiting factor in how much weight you can lift or pull – making it important to not neglect this crucial aspect of athletic development.
Sports that use equipement like a bat, club, or stick benefit immensely from strong hands. Rock climbing and arm wrestling also require tons of grip strength.
With all the benefits of a strong grip, it’s important to know some of the best and most efficient ways to get there – but first let’s outline the types of grip training:
- Passive Gripping – this involves a static hold of an object such as a heavy dumbbell or barbell against the force of gravity.
- Active Gripping – this involves squeezing something that prevents you from closing, such as a hand gripper.
- Open Hand Gripping – this involves holding an object that is too large for your thumb and fingers to overlap such as a thick grip dumbells (or any thick grip adapter such as Fat Gripz)
- Pinch Gripping – this involves squeezing with your fingers extended (not flexed) and your thumb.
The great thing about grip training is that it’s easy to add in key exercises to your current training program. The routine below assumes you train 4 days a week.
- • Farmers Walk: 4 sets. Challenge yourself with a weight you can hold for only 10 seconds.
- • Plate Pinches: 4-6 sets. Use your fingers to grip the outside part of the plate and your thumb for the other side thus holding both plates together. Hold them for as long as you can. Start with two 10-lb. plates and progress from there. Be careful not to drop the weight on your foot as you hit failure.
- • Gripper Work: 8 sets of 4 reps each hand. For grippers we recommend heavy grippers like Captains of Crush grippers that allow you to progress as you get stronger. Like any exercise, warm up first. You can use a pair of light plastic grippers to warm up, before using the heavy grippers. Ensure you fully close the gripper so the two handles touch.
Open Hand Gripping
- • Barbell Curls with a fat grip: 4 sets of 6 reps. You’ll need to move down in weight from what you usually curl using a fat grip. Keep your curl form strict on these.
- • Reverse Wrist Curls: 4 sets of 8 reps. This is a classic forearm exercise that also forces you to grip the barbell or dumbbell tight during the rep to prevent it from falling out of your hand.
- • Heavy Static Hold (Dumbbells): Use a weight you can hold or carry for 3-5 carries for 30-60 seconds.
Active Gripping – see Day 2.
A note about supplementation. Because you’ll be adding additional work at the end of your current routine, nutrition and supplementation for optimal recovery become much more important. Ensure you have some gas left in the tank to give your grip workout the focus it deserves by taking 6th Gear 30-45 minutes before your workout.
After your workout ensure you recover properly with a serving of Complex-1. This perfect combination of protein, carbhydrates and amino acids will help you recover fully so you’re ready to train all out in your next workout.
Giving your grip some focus will improve other aspects of your athletic career and give you some impressive forearms to boot. So get gripping!