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
Gripper on a String
Here is a tip that will greatly enhance your hand strength. In fact, it is much more than a tip. It is actually a gold mine for results and an extremely exciting game that will highly motivate you by its challenging nature. As well as developing hand strength, it will greatly improve your explosive power and your hand-eye coordination.
The set-up for this tip is very easy. All you have to do is take your hand gripper and run a wire or string or small chain through the coil. From there, tie the string or wire to something overhead. This could be a chin-up bar, a rafter or even the rod that holds up your shower curtain. I sometimes even do this by holding the other end of the string or wire with my other hand. As you can see, it doesn't matter, as long as your gripper is hanging in the air. Adjust your gripper so that it is hanging at your upper abdominal or lower chest level; this height seems to work the best.
The object of this challenge is, with one quick explosive move, to close the gripper completely. You are not trying to grab and then squeeze the gripper, but to grab and close with one continuous movement. Start with your hand at your side as if you are going to draw a gun from a holster. As quickly as possible, explode toward the gripper, mashing it closed at the same time. This will be extremely hard to do. You will grasp the gripper differently each time, which is one of the great advantages of this exercise. It works your hand a little bit differently every time you squeeze the gripper.
You are probably wondering which gripper to use. This will surprise you. The average man cannot even close one of those heavy-duty sporting goods store grippers in this manner, due to the uniqueness of this exercise. However, most of you have spent a lot of time developing your hand strength, so here is your challenge. Although this is a training exercise and not a pure feat of strength, if you can close the Trainer Captains of Crush® gripper hanging on the string in this fashion, you have developed great explosive hand strength. And when I say close it, you must touch the handles completely together. You must also be able to do it for at least fifty percent of your attempts.
Be sure to work both hands evenly in your training. You may also want to use a variety of grippers for this exercise, anywhere from the sporting goods store variety to the Captains of Crush® grippers. I, myself, use the Trainer for around fifty repetitions with each hand.
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.
To learn more about IronMind's world-renowned Captains of Crush® Grippers and other CoC 2 Grip Tools, please visit the IronMind on-line store.