John Brookfield's Grip Tips
By John Brookfield
Author of Mastery of Hand Strength, Revised Edition, Training with
Cables for Strength, The Grip Master’s Manual, and Real-World Conditioning
Here is another Grip Tip that will take your lower-arm strength to the next level. Many of you know that I use sledgehammers in a variety of different ways. In fact, there are all types of ways to use hammers in leverage lifts. However, this tip is going to show you something a little different than what you have seen before.
I suggest you start with a six-pound sledgehammer. Pick it up and hold it by the end of the handle. Now slightly toss it up in front of you and grasp it with the other hand by the end of the handle before it falls to the ground. This will require a very strong forearm and hand. There will be a great deal of pressure on the handle as it goes toward the ground. Toss it back and forth from hand to hand as many times as possible before it bends your wrist down and the hammer touches the ground.
I may have given you a tall order to grasp the very end of a six-pound hammer in this fashion. If you can, that's great. However, if you can't, I suggest that you use the same six-pound hammer and grasp the handle slightly toward the head of the hammer, as close to the head of the hammer as needed to be able to perform the exercise. This will give you great enjoyment as you move your hand back farther and farther until you can toss the hammer from hand to hand by the very end of the handle.
Tossing a sledgehammer will develop a very explosive grip as you practice it. This exercise will give anyone an added edge, no matter if you're an arm wrestler, a baseball player, or a weekend tennis player. This type of movement is great because it forces you to be explosive. You will have great fun with this one, and you will vastly appreciate the results it will bring you no matter what your chosen sport or activity.
Editor's note: John Brookfield’s books Mastery of Hand Strength, Revised Edition, The Grip Master’s Manual, Training with Cables for Strength, and Real-World Conditioning combine John’s limitless creativity with his friendly, downhome manner. John’s articles are also regularly featured in MILO: A Journal for Serious Strength Athletes.
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