Jim Schmitz on the Lifts

Who's New Captains of Crush® Grippers

Our History
captainsrichard Richard Sorin: first-ever certified for closing a No. 3 Captains of Crush Gripper.

In 1991—to recognize his exceptional accomplishment in closing our No. 3 Captains of Crush Gripper—we decided to “certify” Richard Sorin, establishing his feat as a high mark for others to shoot for and try to match. We included Richard’s photo and feat of strength in our 1992 IronMind catalog, and when John Brookfield duplicated Richard’s feat in 1992, our gripper certification was off and running . . . although it would be another two years before Tyce Saylor joined the illustrious Richard and John on the world’s most prestigious hand strength list.

Since that time our list has grown to over 150 stout-hearted grip masters on the No. 3 (still a very exclusive club) and 5 dragon slayers on the No. 4. Our Rules for Closing and certification procedures have been honed along the way to reflect the spirit of legitimately closing a Captains of Crush Gripper. These grippers have a unique history and rich tradition—they didn’t just jump on the bandwagon—and our rules guard this flame.

In 2008 IronMind added of a certification for those who have the strength and determination to master the No. 3.5 Captains of Crush® Gripper. Have you conquered the No. 3 and are you currently working toward the No. 4? Mark your achievement and get certified! All who accomplish this will be honored forever. 

New for 2011 is IronMind's addition of No. 2 CoC
® certification for women.  Who will be first, we asked, and the answer was Adriane Blewitt.

Get Certified!

Want to get on the list? First be prepared to train really hard and really smart, working your way up through the ranks of our benchmark grippers until you close the No. 3, No. 3.5, or No. 4 according to our Rules for Closing. You’ll then need to follow the procedure for certification.

What will it do for you? As with any goal worth achieving, the reward is in the journey and the knowledge that you did it right. Sure, you’ll have the glory of seeing your name on the list of those having closed a Captains of Crush Gripper under certified conditions, but more importantly, you’ll know that you can dig deep inside and with a big dose of dedication and persistence, and a measure of faith, you can climb the mountain.

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No. 2 Captains of Crush Gripper
  • Amy Wattles – 2013
  • Elizabeth Horne – 2013
No. 3 Captains of Crush Gripper
  • Lucas Lindberg – 2016
  • Kirill Sarychev - 2016
  • Roman Penkovskiy - 2016
  • Sl-ghi Choi - 2016
No. 3.5 Captains of Crush Gripper
  • Alan Barch Jr. – 2015
No. 4 Captains of Crush Gripper
  • Magnus Samuelsson – 2004

 

Captains of Crush Grippers: the gold standard of grippersWhat They Are and How to Close Them, Second Edition by Randall J. Strossen, Ph.D., with J. B. Kinney and Nathan Holle. Captains of Crush Grippers inspire passion, and this is the book that traces their history, outlines gripper basics, and gives you training information that is proven to work. Joe Kinney calls it the CoC owner's guide, all you need to get strong and smart on CoC grippers.

For more information on Olympic-style weightlifting, weight training, lifter profiles, and competition reports, visit our Weightlifting Resource Pages.

Jim Schmitz’s gold-medal articles on weightlifting and weight training are regularly featured in MILO: A Journal for Serious Strength Athletes.

Take advantage of what Jim Schmitz, absolutely one of the best American coaches in the sport, can teach you in his
Olympic-style Weightlifting for the Beginner & Intermediate Weightlifters Manual and DVD.