How many instances have you had when your grip slips or fatigues, keeping you from finishing that last rep or reaching your limits? If you're incapable of gripping it - you're incapable of lifting it, PERIOD! Grip training is an essential part of any bodybuilder’s or gym enthusiast’s routine - and every single one of them uses some form of grip training equipment. Grip training is one of the most overlooked aspects in fitness and if you're not doing it, you're missing out on some serious progress and gains.
We here at thegripgauntlet.com can't stress benefits of training you grip enough. The trick is: to train your grip as you would your triceps, chest or back. Grip is what gives you stability, and stability is what allows you to tap into the necessary focus to advance steadily in every single other exercise which requires the use of your two most advanced tools that are the key factor to all of mankind's feats advances up until this point - your hands.
Still not convinced? These are all benefits of Grip Training which we will discuss in greater depth in this article.
+ Injury Prevention
+ Strength and stability in all hand related exercises
+ Strength and stability in all hand related activity in general
+ Larger, Stronger Forearms
+ Powerful, Firm Handshake... and the list goes on
Grip training equipment - The Types
There's as many types of grip training equipment as there are types of grip strength - and they're all named after them too, isn't that wonderfully convenient? First being Crush, then pinch and finally support. It's essential that all three are being trained to build a healthy, well-developed grip.
Crush Grip is the grip between your palm and fingers, it's called that since when you're training it it's pretty much like trying to crush something in your hands. A prime example of everyday use of the crush grip would be a handshake. This is definitely the most common type of grip strength used in day to day life. Other examples include holding a bottle of water, crushing it in your hand after it's empty, holding onto a steering wheel (if you're driving how you should be) and if you're anything like me - squeezing your bicep to feel how hard it is.
Ideal examples of crush grip training equipment would be the regular good old Hand Gripper (Learn more about Hand Grippers HERE!), exercise balls and the grip strength rings. If you have the opportunity then it's highly recommended to alternate between different types of equipment to make sure you're squeezing out every last bit of potential from each an every muscle fiber in your hand, along with decreasing the likelihood of injury or cramping.
If you have the equipment but lack the necessary knowledge to improve your Crush grip, then the CRUSH: Tottal Gripper Domination Video Course, is a must have!
Pinch Grip is when you're only using your fingers and thumb. A good example of this would be tearing off a piece of paper to write down a note. When training the pinch grip, the person performing the exercise is prone to cramps, so it's important to be mindful of not overdoing it and pushing your limits without overstepping them. A cramp has never killed anyone but....wait. Actually it has, so yeah, be careful. Or if you're not gonna be careful at least avoid swimming deep into large bodies of water when you know you're prone to cramps due to being too enthusiastic with your pinch grip training.
Dark humour aside, here's some pinch oriented grip training equipment - Crimp Training Bands, Two-Finger Mini Hand Grippers, and you can also train this area by using a smaller, easy enough to squish with your fingers stress ball just to add some diversity into the mix with a piece of equipment that's potentially already in your possession.
Also known as the carrying grip - The combined use of your palm, fingers and thumb all together equal the support grip. Carrying grocery bags in your hands on your way to home or to your car is a good example. Strongmen make use of exactly this in many instances during competitions and it's safe to say that the strongest strongman is most definitely the holder of the strongest gripping strength. It's hard to imagine it being otherwise. Other examples include, rows, farmer’s walks and pull-ups inside the gym or wherever you're exercising at.
Obviously, to train this to its fullest extent it would be preferable to use all types of equipment mentioned to most efficiently and fully exercise the power of your hand.
The best Support grip training knowledge can be acquired in the Block Weight Training Video Course!
Benefits of grip training
As promised, we're going to be diving deeper into the benefits of training the power of your hand and why you should be doing it if you aren’t already. And if you are, but aren't too knowledgeable on the benefits, reading this will surely boost your mood - even if just a little.
To some this is obvious, others don't consider it at all. A very high percentage of bodybuilding related injuries happen due to a lack of power or endurance in the injured persons hands. A weak hold on the bar can cause someone to drop it while performing deadlifts, squats, bench presses and the list goes on and on - just use your imagination. We list this as the first benefit because it is the most important. We work out to improve our health, not ruin it.
Not only this, but if you've got very strong arms but a weak grip then that means that you're undoubtedly damaging your wrists, fingers and hands in general. If they're just barely holding on as you squeeze our rep after rep, you're just gonna end up with a lot of problems in the future - so please work out responsibly and work out all of your body, not just the flashy parts, however tempting it may be. However, with enough grip training, your forearms will become as vascular and flashy as the “bigger” muscles. Wouldn’t you like to have forearms as in the image to the right?
Lastly, consistent grip training will ensure improvement in chronic injuries caused by repetitive movement. An example of such an injury would be the Golfer’s Elbow, a common but yet extremely uncomfortable injury. Make sure that you use the Crimp Training Bands to ensure that the extensor muscles, the ones responsible for opening your hand, are not neglected.
As you can see, a consistent grip training routine, in combination with a healthy work-out regimen will certainly ensure that you are consistently improving and setting those PRs that you have been striving towards!
Strength and Stability in all Hand Related Exercises
Deduced from the previous point, not much is needed to be said in regards to why this is so. Obviously it's a lot easier to squeeze out that last rep you need to reach your new personal best if your hands are steady and ready instead of shaking and quaking. Pull-ups, rows, dips you name it - strengthen your hands and you will in turn strengthen your proficiency in all of these exercises and more. It's worth it!
Strength and stability in all hand related activity in general
Your friend needs help moving? Dad needs help carrying out an old fridge from the garage? Let's just put it simply - Something physical to do pops up every once in a while and it's a lot less of a chore and a lot more of an easy quick exercise when your hands are stable and ready to go. Even if you're not the strongest guy in the world, and even if you don't even go to the gym that often or heck - go to the gym at all you'll be greatly amazed at how much more you can do by strengthening just this part of your body, though we always recommend keeping all of your body healthy - if we need to explain why then there's no point anyway.
Larger, Stronger Forearms
Your hands, as you might've noticed while being a human living in this wonderful world of ours, are connected to your arms - the forearm part of them to be precise. So, If you've ever done any activity with your hands for a lengthier period of time you've definitely noticed that your forearms tend to get sore as well. Knowing this you don't need to be an expert of fitness and anatomy (though this fact comes from experts in this area), to come to the conclusion that training your grip includes training your forearms whether you like it or not.
In fact it is one of the best ways to train your forearms and they naturally train with pretty much every arm related exercise, but when it comes to the hands, you'll definitely be feeling the burn if you get serious about strengthening the two biological miracles we call our hands.
If you really want to push your limits and gain noticeable size in your forearms, check out our "Fierce Forearms" Video course, which will teach you the ins and outs of forearm development.
Exercising the strength of your grip is very important not only for gym goers or bodybuilders but also for the average Joe looking to increase his capabilities, strengthen his handshake and improve his overall health. Grip training equipment divides into three categories - crush, pinch and support. Crush is when you use your palm and fingers, pinch is when you use your fingers and thumb, and support is when everything is used all together - most often in a carrying, holding or pulling - depending on the object being manipulated and your position relative to it.
Good equipment for crush is a Hand Gripper, exercise balls and the grip strength rings. For pinch it's Crimp Training Bands, Two-Finger Mini Hand Grippers, and exercise balls. Support is trained by combining all aspects since it itself is the combined power of your whole hand.
Once you have gotten your grip training equipment from us, ensure that you have the proper knowledge on how to use it by checking out our Grip Training Ebooks & DVD's.
If you wish to learn more about Grip Strength, you can find related blog posts below!