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Grip Routine

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by CarnalSalvation, Sep 22, 2005.

  1. CarnalSalvation

    CarnalSalvation Trying to make a Milankey

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    Note: This is not a thread for me to explain a million different grip exercises, it's for people who've got the grip training figured out, but aren't quite sure how to impliment it. So please, don't clutter this up with too many non routine related Q's.

    I believe volume/frequency is key for the grip. For that reason when I am training hard I train grip five days a week. Some people train it even more. I'll give an outline of how I do my training.

    Grippers 1
    Warm-up with easy grippers
    overcrushes (high intensity)
    Singles on semi-challenging gripper (as a #3 closer, I might use the beefbuilder supermaster here for example) as well as singles on an easy gripper for max volume

    Thickbar
    2" or 2.5" barbell deadlifts for 1-3 rep sets, or rack pulls for timed holds
    2" bar high pulls from the hang for doubles
    Rolling thunder up to heavy singles then timed holds
    2" or 2.5" barbell or dumbell curls

    Pinch
    Plate pinches for timed holds, or heavy singles, usually one handed, occasionally two handed
    I then do an exercise where I pinch a weight in excess of my one handed max with two hands, and hold it with one. For some reason you can hold more than you can pick up. It's kind of like a negative.
    After I do the plate pinching I move onto my block weights. I have a light one and a heavier one. Neither is extremely challenging for me, so I've found various ways to make it harder such as using fewer fingers, tossing it from hand to hand, doing dynamic things like cleans and snatches (the increased force makes it harder to hold onto, same reason for the highpulls with the 2" barbell). Simply picking them up, or picking them up and holding them for time is great though if you have challlenging blocks. If you're looking to increase gripper strength, I highly advise trying to lift and hold one of your block weights with your ring/pinkie and thumb only. If this is too difficult, put athletic tape on the block and see if this helps. Clay Edgin gave me the tip of strengthening my pinkie and ring (especially ring) fingers, as they are farthest down the lever of a gripper handle. It works, I will attest to that. I did a lot of training for those fingers in the weaks leading up to my dominating the #3 for the first time.
    Then I'll usually do some burnout pinching on my pinch block, or using 2 25's per hand for several sets
    lastely I use the "telegraph key" to work my thumbs and my pinkie/ring fingers. If you don't have a telegraph key, try lifting plates by the lip using only limited fingers and holding them this way.

    Grippers 2:
    Warm-up
    Singles on hard grippers and attempts on uncloseable grippers
    No Set Closes on challenging grippers
    Overcrushes (medium intensity)

    Wrist/Lowerarm
    Bending, doing max bends all the time will wear you out in a hurry, so try bending for max volume in a set period of time. I fyou did 6 60 penny nails in 10 minutes last week, try seven the next, something like that. Also, bending isn't something you have to go balls out on all the time to get results on, and it requires more rest than most other types of "lifts".
    Wrist Roller (2")
    Levering (2" bar)
    2" DB Hammer curls


    Some overall grip tips:
    -Recovery for grip is important too. Get one of these squishy stress balls, and a pair of those clangy chinese balls (the ben wa balls bwahaha). Seriously, playing with your balls (I meant the ones I was talking about in the previous sentence sicko!) in your offtime will help your hands recover and improve your work capacity
    -Grippers all the time! When I was training to close the #3, I kept the #1 around all the time when I was at home. Whenever it'd cross my mind I'd pick it up and bang out 10 singles with each hand either set or no set, or maybe do a rep set. Nothing too hard, but I found playing with an easy gripper while I was working hard on other days improved performance overall.
    -Learn to bend. There is a reason bending is becoming the hot new thing, it makes your wrists and lower arms freaky strong. I can't think of a grappler who WOULDN'T benefit from doing some bending. The only issue could possibly be a shoulder or elbow injury, if you jump into bending too quickly, or bend without warming up, it places a great deal of stress on the joints. The key with bending isn't in your hands, it's in your head. You need to really EXPLODE on the nail.

    You heard Brooks say it you guys, grip is key for grapplers, fighters and wrestlers. It's 100% true. I was inspired to make this post by a PM I got from a wise man who knew that stronger hands would make him a better grappler, and sought to learn how to make his hands powerful. Your hands and wrists transfer the power of your body to your opponnent, whether it be a strike, a hold, a sub, a throw, whatever it is, most of the time, your hands/wrists are the link to the individual you're trying to hurt. Don't let your hands and wrists be a weak link in your chain, especially when there are so many benefits to be reaped from having a pair of really strong hands. You owe it to yourself, train grip, train it hard, and if you have any money, spend some of it on grip toys.

    And any of you who are serious about getting some meathooks to grapple with, I really would advise The Mastery of Handstrength by John Brookefield, unless you are already quite well versed in grip trianing. The book is excellent, it offers a ton of inovative training ideas, breaks grip training and how/why to do it down in an easy to understand way, and Johns enthusiasm for grip is evident throughout the book. You can pick it up at Ironmind.
     
  2. hughes

    hughes Beltless Bum

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    Great post.

    A good way I like to work up to limiting fingers with pinch work is to move the finger after I've lifted it. Obviously that isn't a proper pinch lift, but it's a good way to gradually increase your finger strength.

    I've also just recently started taking leverage work seriously. I feel like a bit of a dick for not doing it sooner. My gripper still gets a lot of use, but I'm not doing the amount of volume I could/should be.

    I've never tried bending.
     
  3. Diligent

    Diligent Blue Belt

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    Hey, thanks! Nice post, man.

    From looking at them PR threads, I know you are a monster in the weightroom...that's awesome that you closed that darned #3.... Dude, I have to ask...how much can you do on the Rolling Thunder and pinch grips? Also, how much can you lever with?

    btw, this is so awesome that there are people on here like you guys who actually train grip... I don't know anyone personally who trains grip...so this is pretty cool. haha, when I train pinch grip at 24 Fitness (I know, I know...), people look at me like I'm an alien or something. haha
     
  4. rickdog

    rickdog Purple Belt

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    CArnal, I am a relative novice at grip training. I can close the #2 COC and I use the rolling thunder, Thick bar hammer curls and pinch grips. My question is with bending. What would you recomend to start with for someone new to it. Should you start ultra easy to get the "feel" down. What is considered easy? Thanks in advance for your advice and for getting me pumped up to hammer my grip again.
     
  5. colinm

    colinm Brown Belt

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    good shit carnal. over the last 2 weeks you've made a bunch of good threads/posts. thanks for helping to keep S&P legit.
     
  6. rickdog

    rickdog Purple Belt

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    Let me second that man. Your insights and the time you take to articulate them are much appreciated. Thanks again bro.
     
  7. Rjkd12

    Rjkd12 Certified Bastard

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    Go to the store and get a huge box of timber ties. Get the ones from China I believe. They should be the same price as the other ones from the US, but they are harder. Someone might be able to help me on this, it may not be china, but I know its not the US ones.

    The box should be huge, like a gallon size and be like 40 bucks. These will teach you your form and be nice warm ups for the future. Plus it will be nice to always have easy bending stock around to teach buddies or break into after half a dozen beers.

    Get some leather wraps. I got mine from an experienced bender, so to be honest I don't know where you can get some. The guys buys leather off ebay and then cuts it himself.

    There is a tutorial from www.gripboard.com by Dave Morton and Greg Amidon. I think you can also get it from the diesel website. Learn your bending method, double overhand if you want the big bends.

    Once you can bend the TT"s easily, get some 1/4 inch CRS from Home Depot and a pair of cutters and start out at 7 inches and work your way down to 4-5 inches. Once you can bend 4 or 5 inchers maybe start on some 5/16 CRS. Maybe HRS. In between some good things are 60D's, G5's and G8's but those are expensive. Fun though. You can get nails from Ironmind, but its easier to cut your own.
     
  8. CrazyAZNRedneck

    CrazyAZNRedneck Orange Belt

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    Problem with grip training is how addictive it gets. I have to use straps to do almost every lift in the gym because I can't seem to stop myself from doing grip work almost everyday.
     
  9. rickdog

    rickdog Purple Belt

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    Thanks for the information. I look forward to bending.
     
  10. Todd Gack

    Todd Gack Dutch

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    Listen to this man. "Certified bastard" means he can bend!!
     
  11. CarnalSalvation

    CarnalSalvation Trying to make a Milankey

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    Yep, that's a great post, although, I found 60d's to be well worth the price, as well as grade fives, but hell that really all the further I've gotten. I'm not crunching any 5/1g or 3/8 shit.
     
  12. CarnalSalvation

    CarnalSalvation Trying to make a Milankey

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    Oh, and hey, thanks for those of you who took a second to say something, it's YOUR posts that keep me posting.
     
  13. Todd Gack

    Todd Gack Dutch

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    I find that everyone should experiment with volume. I've tried everything from 7 days a week to once every 10 days and each approach had it's pros and cons. The one thing you should strive for is balance. Training 7 days a week produced great results when it came to closing tougher grippers, but it was bloody murder on my elbows (yes I was using recovery techniques). I had a tough time doing any sort of heavy pressing so I had to cut back on my gripper training in order to balance things out. As of now, I'm rarely using my grippers (maybe once a week), but I'm doing alot of other grip stuff like plate wrist curls, RT lifts. pinch lifts, levering etc. The results speak for themselves as I am coming very close to finally dominating the #3 COC. I think building a good foundation with high volume gripper work has allowed me to progress now with lower volume training.

    Carnal, I really like the variety in your grip training!
     
  14. CarnalSalvation

    CarnalSalvation Trying to make a Milankey

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    I agree with ya there Sonny, just like with normal training different types of training and different levels of volume work for different folks. Elbow pain from grippers/bending is pretty common, I've experienced it and I know my friend Bob Lipinski cuts way back on that shit when he is gearing up for a meet.

    Really though you're right, grippers are great and they're my favorite, but they aren't the end all be all of hand strength by any means, especially for a grappler.

    The only part of my hand that is weak per say, at this point, are my thumbs. I tried training singles for a long time, and for whatever reason it took me a long time to figure out that singles didn't work on pinch for me.

    For everybody though, even if you're only doing it once a week, or tacking a lift onto the end of your normal workouts or whatever, don't be afraid to really work your hands to the bone.
     
  15. Todd Gack

    Todd Gack Dutch

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    I remember Bob mentioning that he cuts back on grippers leading up to a meet because they kill his elbows in his Mash Monster profile.

    In terms of pinch, I progress better using timed holds than just single lifts. But with the RT, I can ONLY progress using singles. As for levering, I like higher volume with less weight.
     
  16. you get that pm i sent you? i had a couple dumb questions. i'll be on tomorrow if you have time for it.
     
  17. rickdog

    rickdog Purple Belt

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    I also think strangeling your inlaws is a fantastic way to work your grip.
     
  18. Todd Gack

    Todd Gack Dutch

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    Mine live too far away!
     
  19. CarnalSalvation

    CarnalSalvation Trying to make a Milankey

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    fight song, yeah I got it, I am just high a lot, so I am slothy sometimes.

    Sonny, I do both singles and timed holds on teh RT, gains are flat out tough to make on that thing for me. My best is 170 right now I think. or 167.5 or something like that. Pretty suck compared to closing a #3 or bending a 5.5" g5.

    Same with pinch, I've done 68.5, never officially done 2 35's even. I've broken them off the ground numerous times but never to full lockout. Oddly, I can lift a 40lb block weight no problem.
     
  20. rickdog

    rickdog Purple Belt

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    Carnal, do you notice that your strength incresase come quick when training grip or is it something that takes alot of time?
     

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