Grip Strength

Hand Grip Exercises

Hand grip strength is important for defensive tactics training at the academy and in the field for arms and appointments control and retention. Remember you need to be able to squeeze 30 kilograms in the strength test. So the training you are doing needs to be heavy and when you are finished your hands and arms should be shaking at the end of the session. A good test for this is to try and type on the computer or drink a cup of tea, if your hands are not shaking - you didn't train at the right intensity, so you need to do more. Women are usually weaker in this area so If you are thinking of joining us and are worried that your strength is not where it should be , here are some exercises that you can add to your strength training routine so you don't have any issues with this when you start here:

Towel hangs

Throw a towel over something that will hold your weight that you can hang from, ie monkey bars at the park, chin up racks at the gym, a strong tree branch, etc. Grip the towel, lift your feet off the ground  for as long as you can. Rest a couple of minutes and repeat another 2 times. You can also do this without the towel, however the towel challenges your grip more.

Farmers walk

This is where you hold something heavy in both hands down by your side, you can use weight plates at the gym or fill a bag with something heavy like bricks, text books, or heavy items from your pantry. Walk around with them for as long as you can then rest and repeat 2 more times. Remember 30kgs!

Pull up'sAcademy PTI Pull Up

Lay under a bar, take hold of the bar with a reverse/underhand grip and pull your chest to the bar and lower slowly with control, repeat as many as you can, rest and repeat another 2 times. I use my children's trampoline to practice these at home and it works a treat, lay under the trampoline and take hold of the edge of it as you would the bar - you don't need a gym for everything.

Wet towel

Very simple, yet effective, ring out a thick wet towel until your hands and forearms are fatigued (so that burning sensation)

Chin Up's

As you get stronger add chin ups to your grip strength training. Find a bar that is high enough (so maybe in a park if you don't go to a gym) and try and pull your chin up to the bar (over hand grip hands wide). If you can't do this you can have a friend help you by taking some of your body weight as the lift you up. If you are on your own, simply hanging with your feet off the ground for as long as you can is a start - we all have to start somewhere - as long as you start!

If you have access to a rock climbing gym - rock climbing is also great for handgrip strength.

There are many other exercises you can do for hand grip.  In PT at the academy we like to keep things simple and the above exercises are tried and tested and have proven effective. If you follow the above you should see improvements in your grip. 

As a guide to see if you have met the right intensity - your hands should be shaking when you have finished the session, if they are not, you didn't train hard enough.  Do NOT do this every day.  At least 2 times per week, with 2-3 days in between. The reason being that after you train your muscles tear (this is a good thing). 

When you are having your days rest between the muscles repair themselves and grow back stronger, that's when strength gains are made. You need to be consistent and keep on stressing those muscles so they make the adaptations, making you stronger!! This not only applies to hand grip training but ALL your training! So keep it up or get started if you haven't already.

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