When you take the time to consider your overall well-being, it’s easy to overlook the little things, such as grip strength. But little things add up and in the end makes a significant difference. If your definition of grip strength is how hard you can hold onto something, you’re correct. While on the surface it sounds simple, having that capability to “hold on” comes into play in almost every workout and every day movements. Think of your fingers, hands, wrists, and forearms as the gatekeepers of functional fitness. If they don’t want to let wellness in, you’re not going to enjoy a life full of health and well-being.
What is Grip Strength?
Technically speaking, grip strength goes beyond the ability to hold something in your hands. It’s the physical capacity to hold onto and maintain control of an external object in your hands for an extended period of time. Overall, grip strength is a measurement of your muscular strength or the maximum force generated by your forearm muscles.
Even if you can leg press 1,000 pounds or perform pushups until you’re blue in the face, your training competence is limited by your grip strength.
Grip strength entails a number of different grips, so it’s more than just wrapping your fingers around a bar, dumbbell, kettlebell, or weight. To fully understand and master the science of grip strength you have to nail down the art. There are a variety of different grips:
- Upinated (palms facing up)
- Pronated (palms facing down)
- Neutral (palms facing toward one another)
- Hybrid (variations between two)
The grip you use depends almost entirely on what you’re holding. The rest revolves around what you’re trying to accomplish.
Why is Grip Strength Vital?
Without proper grip strength, a multitude of muscle imbalances and injuries can potentially occur as a result. Imagine conditions like tennis elbow and medial epicondylitis.
On the other hand, when you have solid grip strength everyday tasks become much easier. Activities like carrying your briefcase, unloading the groceries, and hanging on to the dog’s leash become more routine. That’s why experts say that the skill is a staple element of functional fitness.
Moreover, grip strength allows you to expand your workouts. You can increase your intensity, which allows you to build more muscle over a shorter period of time.
What to be on the Look out for While Working on Your Grip
Though everyone can benefit from improving their grip strength, some people can be more susceptible to injuries. The best way to start is by sticking to lighter weights. Focus on form, modifications, and improving your grip strength, then move on to adding more weight.
Second, don’t move too fast. Building your grip strength takes time and patience.
Third, be cautious of the volume you’re working with. Most professionals recommend you stay in the three to five set range with three to five repetitions per set.
Finally, focus on improving your wrist’s mobility. Make stretching and massaging your wrists on a daily basis a priority.
8 Exercises to Help Enhance Your Grip Strength
Below are eight different exercises to assist you as you strive to max out your grip strength.
Well + Good
Oct 27, 2020