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  • Lifting straps...

    of any kind are almost certainly not primal, but coming back to lifting after a while I'm finding that my the strength of my grip is way behind the strength of my legs. I can dead lift 275 and have no problems/lack of strength in my legs, but my forearms feel like they're going to implode when I do it.

    Any suggestions? I know that I'd like to get my legs back up to being really powerful (I want to be dead lifting over 405 by October 2010) but I can't imagine my grip keeping pace... is it worth it to "cheat" and get more out of my leg days, and work on grip on another day?

  • #2
    Sledgehammer, mace, clubs, kettlebells all train your grip dynamically. I train exclusively on these implements, and in fact I walked into the gym 2 Saturdays ago and pulled 315 lbs raw (no straps) for 5 reps. I'm 165 lbs. In fact I've only been in the gym twice this year. Since I train for function I only lift what I can grip, and I have a real nice pair of leather straps which haven't been used in over 2 years. It's up to you, but a strong grip also helps all your other lifts. Since you're getting back into it, I would continue to lift raw even if your numbers are lower but as your grip strength increases so will your overall numbers.

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    • #3
      I agree with the idea of training your grip. What's your hurry to lift that much weight? Besides, I think it's better to have strong forearms in proportion to the rest of one's body.
      You lousy kids! Get off my savannah!

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      • #4
        Have you already transitioned to alternate grip?
        Are you using chalk?

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        • #5
          I guess I'm just in a hurry to get back to where I was strength-wise, but I can definitely see the benefit of taking the time to train my grip, and there's always squats if I want to give my forearms a break...

          Pantera, what's alternate grip? Is that one overhand one underhand? I haven't used chalk in the past, but after the past few workouts I can see why people use it...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Pantera View Post
            Have you already transitioned to alternate grip?
            Are you using chalk?
            +1

            Alternating hook grip and chalk massively improves grip capability
            The "Seven Deadly Sins"

            Grains (wheat/rice/oats etc) . . . . . Dairy (milk/yogurt/butter/cheese etc) . . . . . Nightshades (peppers/tomato/eggplant etc)
            Tubers (potato/arrowroot etc) . . . Modernly palatable (cashews/olives etc) . . . Refined foods (salt/sugars etc )
            Legumes (soy/beans/peas etc)

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Feanor78 View Post
              ...what's alternate grip? Is that one overhand one underhand?
              Yes. Do your warmups with standard (double overhand) grip and then do the working sets with an alternate grip. To avoid potential imbalances, switch which arm goes over and under from workout to workout.

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              • #8
                I use alternate grip and can max close to 400 without feeling to insecure about my grip. I guess I'm kinda hijacking, but what are some recommended methods for training grip other than sleedgehmmer, mace, etc, mentioned by primalclubber?

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                • #9
                  The alternating grip will take care of the immediate grip problems. Also, you will get used to the regular grip and its weakness by continuing to lift that way. It is the weak link now, but will develop along with the lift. I like hanging on my pull up bar to get forearm strength. My two cents....

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                  • #10
                    For deadlifting I would advise to use straps as rarely as possible and let your grip catch up to your strength. Maybe if you were doing a higher rep set or something, straps would be fine but for the most part it's better to let your grip catch up.

                    Athletes/Lifters often use straps because they lift so often they need a way to keep their hands from getting turned into hamburger. I use straps on snatches frequently, which is somewhat of a problem: I hate using them, and try to rotate them out as much as possible but frequent lifting and bar rotation does a number on my hands so straps are used to help avoid it. On the flip side, once I start getting to 92.5% or higher of my max, my grip isn't all that reliable soo yeah.

                    Over/under grip for your working sets is fine. Just use a regular grip for your warm-ups, and if you can manage try using a regular grip on your work sets until you can't anymore, then go to over/under. I wouldn't recommend using a hook grip on higher rep sets. On a single or double it may be fine, but from experience I can get quite painful and is hard on your thumbs. That said, I use a hook grip for snatches and cleans, but obviously the weight is much less than I could deadlift and the hook grip is released quickly.

                    Get some chalk as well if you can.
                    Check out my blog!

                    http://easternstrength.blogspot.com/

                    I like to throw, squat and pull heavy things for fun.

                    We're designed to be hunters and we're in a society of shopping. There's nothing to kill anymore, there's nothing to fight, nothing to overcome, nothing to explore. In that societal emasculation this everyman is created. ~David Fincher, director of Fight Club, interview with Gavin Smith, "Inside Out," Film Comment, Sep/Oct 1999

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                    • #11
                      Straps also increase risk of injury by not letting you drop the weight imeadiately if necessary!
                      Rangers Lead the Way, Hooah!

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                      • #12
                        don't forget that improving your grip strength can help you healthwise later on lin life:

                        http://qjmed.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/reprint/100/11/707

                        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10022113
                        sigpic

                        HANDS OFF MY BACON :: my primal journal

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Big Dave View Post
                          Straps also increase risk of injury by not letting you drop the weight imeadiately if necessary!
                          Not true. This is only a problem when people use to almost literally superglue themselves to the bar. Straps should not be that tight. I have had to drop snatches behind me when I missed and never have had a problem releasing the straps.

                          The best straps you can get are homemade ones without the loop from just a piece of woven cloth/fabric-material. Think a They release much quicker if necessary. You can buy them on muscledriverusa.com, but the kind they sell there is easily made at home, or you can just open the loop on a cheap pair of cotton straps.
                          Check out my blog!

                          http://easternstrength.blogspot.com/

                          I like to throw, squat and pull heavy things for fun.

                          We're designed to be hunters and we're in a society of shopping. There's nothing to kill anymore, there's nothing to fight, nothing to overcome, nothing to explore. In that societal emasculation this everyman is created. ~David Fincher, director of Fight Club, interview with Gavin Smith, "Inside Out," Film Comment, Sep/Oct 1999

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                          • #14
                            I second grip training...

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                            • #15
                              This guy custom manufactures (in Iowa) all manners of grip centric training tools, and you might get some ideas here along with links to other grip-centric blogs. I have one of his maces and have to say they're beautifully made. Mark is a fan of his as well.

                              http://strongergrip.blogspot.com/

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