Generation Iron Get a Grip

How to maximize your workouts with the perfect grip.

The grip. It’s an essential attribute to strength if you’re going to make it in bodybuilding. There are a variety of grips to choose from, each with its own specific goal in mind. The three main types, The Crush Grip, The Pinch Group, and The Support Grip, all target specific muscles and offer their own benefits. The Crush Grip is the grip between your fingers and palm, what you’d use to hold tight on a ball for instance. The Pinch Grip focuses on the grip of your individual fingers and thumbs. The Support Grip is the one used when you’re performing a pull up. All are important, but how exactly do you train each grip to maximize your performance? We’ve got a list with surefire workouts to help you out.

Optimizing The Crush

Static barbell holds are great for developing both support and crushing strength . Simply take a barbell from the rack, hold with both hands, curl and maintain the position for ninety second intervals. Add on weights according to your strength level. This will prove to be a killer exercise for your grip and boost forearm strength and musculature, not to mention prove to be a killer on the biceps.

Overhand barbell dead lifts will do much in the way of improving your crushing grip strength. Perform the deadlift with both arms overhand on the bar and squeeze tight for 5-10 seconds. Sounds easy, but after three sets of three to five reps you’re arms will be burning and your grip will be reaping dividends.

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Strengthening The Pinch

Plate pinchers will greatly enhance Pinch Grip strength. By holding a heavy plate gripped between the fingers and thumb suspended from the ground you’ll improve not only the strength of your individual fingers, but wrist strength as well. The Pinch grip is traditional a more difficult grip to improve as opposed to the crushing grip, but it will pay dividends when it comes to maintaining strength during heavy lifting.

Hex dumbbell lifting is another great exercise for building the pinching grip. By gripping one end of the hex dumbbell between thumb and fingers and lifting, your pinching strength will rise to new heights.

Maintaining Support

The pull up bar hang will work wonders particularly with the support grip. By grabbing hold of the pull up bar, bending your knees and suspending in the air, the hands will gradually be conditioned. Changing the grip (palms facing you or palms facing away) will ensure that your hands will receive well rounded conditioning.

The farmer’s walk is also a great exercise for building support strength. The type of weights used can vary; dumbbells, bar bells, hex bar bells, and kettle bells are all ideal for this type of training. Pick up either one or two and walk as far as possible. Besides building grip strength it’s also a great full body workout as well.

Whichever grip you choose to strengthen, and we highly recommended you try them all, by following this list you’ll increase your gripping performance and be able to tackle any lifting requirements you may have.

Got any other tips that we didn’t mention here? Feel free to throw out other suggestions in the comments section below or through our official Facebook and Twitter pages.

Managing editor of Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. He has been writing about bodybuilding, combat sports, and strength sports for over 8 years. Check out his YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Sound Cloud for in-depth MMA analysis.