Grip Strength Training – Develop Herculean Upper Body Strength?

In this day and age it is important to maintain a healthy level of fitness. This is critical to maintaining a strong body and a strong cardiovascular system in order to thrive into our later years. For most people this involves going to the gym and working out regularly. Among the different types of exercises, grip strength training is one that should never be taken for granted.

So, What Exactly is Grip Strength Training?

Grip strength training is a type of exercise that increases the strength of the hands and the lower arms all the way from the elbow to the finger tips. There are many reasons why one should have a strong grip. Socially, men with firm handshakes are considered strong. This makes them dependable, confident and trustworthy. When one has a strong grip, they are able to heave heavy weights in the gym. This added strength improves ones training results as they are able to do continuous exercises such as pull-ups and chin-ups all which require a solid grip. Research has also indicated that a stronger grip leads to better life later on. There is also improved injury resilience since the strengthened muscles are less prone to injury and in case injuries happen, they recover quickly in a short period enabling one to get on top of their game. Now that we have looked at some of the benefits of grip strength training, let us look at the various types of grip.

A Quick Look at Grip Typeshand grip rope

The most common type is the crush grip which is usually used for shaking hands and crushing objects in ones hands. Some other similar types of grip include clamping and crimping. The second type is the pinch grip. This involves using the thumb and the fingers to grasp an object. It can be either static as in the case of gripping a table top, or dynamic when squeezing the handles of a clamp. The third type of grip is the support grip which is basically the ability to hold on to an object for a while. This can be applied when doing pull-ups in the gym or during a long trip to the shopping mall. In short, the type of grip strength one develops depends on what they would like to do with it. People who do a lot of climbing may find the pinch grip and the support grip to be of most importance to them.

Grip strength training requires training which is different from regular muscle training. These can be categorized into two main types; suspension and crashing exercises. Suspension exercises involve suspending a weight while at the same time gripping it with ones wrist. There is a lot of danger involved in this type of exercise and injuries could occur if one dropped the weight. Examples of suspension exercises include grip hangs, towel grip dumbbell curls, towel grip walk, plate-grip farmers walk, static barbell hold and one arm dumbbell rows with towel. These are reviewed one after the other in the following section.

The grip hang typically involve hanging from a horizontal bar above the trainee and holding on for some time in order to increase the strength. These enhance the holding and crushing strength of the person. The tower grip dumbbell curls involve wrapping a towel around the handle of a dumbbell and gripping both sides of the towel to get a strong hold while lifting. This targets the development of the whole arm especially the forearms. The towel grip walk on the other hand develops isometric crushing strength. In order to carry out this movement one should find an area free from obstructions in order to walk around while gripping the towel wrapped dumbbell. This is similar to the plate-grip farmers walk which targets pinching strength and utilizes a plate instead of the dumbbell.

The static barbell hold is targeted especially at increasing crushing and holding strength. It simply involves taking a barbell from the rack and holding it up for up to one and a half minutes. One arm dumbbell rows with towel are similar to the towel grip dumbbell curls but involve one arm with the user squatting.

Crushing exercises on the other hand help the person to develop holding strength in the hands. These kinds of exercises utilize the fingers, thumbs and the palms. They include rubber ball squeeze, newspaper balls and newspaper tearing. The rubber ball squeeze involves holding a tennis ball in ones hands and squeezing for some time. The newspaper balls are yet another simple and innovative yet effective way of growing crushing strength. It involves tearing of the pages of the newspaper, cutting them into pieces and with one hand, rolling each of the pieces into very small balls. This is usually done until the entire newspaper has been used up. Newspaper cutting on the other hand involves taking two pieces of newspaper and folding them together into halves several times. One then begins to cut the halves into smaller divisions.

Other grip strengthening exercises also exist such as the fingertip push-ups for strengthening the fingertips which lead to improved grip strength, and the wrist twist which are very useful for daily activities which involve twisting such as opening doorknobs, the lids on jars and using screw drivers. In order to perform this exercise, one needs a dumbbell. The person sits at the end of a bench and slowly rotates the hand holding it while gripping the dumbbell. Others include the handstand and the metal-rod exercises.

Closing Thoughts

It is important however not to overdo the grip strength training. Doing them one to three times per week should be enough to develop the grip strength required. Doing too much of it is dangerous and may lead to self-inflicted injuries and other complications.

In conclusion, grip strength training is a must have item on the to-do list of everyone out there who is conscious of their physical health and would like to improve their grip. This article has looked at the various benefits of grip strength training and the various ways of doing it. Having powerful grip strength is fun and worth doing.