T Nation

Deadlift Grip Strength?

Apart from using straps and wraps, how do you guys grip the bar when deadlifting?
I get to 150kg and it slips out of my fingers, I hate using wraps cause I can never get them on right and usually work out solo so don’t have anyone who can help get them on for me.
Having help using them in the past iv lifted 180kg so it’s frustrating knowing I can’t properly increase and complete my strength routine

I switched to hook grip


Are you using a mixed grip or double overhand?

Using mixed grip

Add in some double overhand barbell holds. Do you do much rowing or chins? That’s a fairly light weight to be having a grip fail. Also what type of barbell? The thick smooth one many gyms have is going to limit you.

Hook grip will make a huge difference, but you’ll still have to build up your grip strength. I’d avoid straps and wraps for awhile and work a lot on rows and chins. Focus on crushing the hell outta the bar from the second you take your grip until your set is over. For hook grip you’ll want to start light and focus on setting your grip right every time. It’s gonna hurt until you build calluses but it’s worth fighting through it in the end.

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Thin bar same as used for bench, they only have the one variety.
Yeah I know it’s frustrating, I don’t do many chins due to a bad shoulder but have been working on them more lately. I love rows as well but once I get close to 45kg it starts slipping out of my hand… Assuming you meant a bent row and not a seated row. Il start finishing with some holds and see how that goes.

Is hook grip the same as mixed?
Yep wil definitely keep increasing the rows and chins. Iv had calluses tear from my hands being soft, working with gloves on and boxing has made it hard to get them to develope so that’ll be fun.
Cheers for the help il give it a crack and hopefully get some strength in my grip.

I’d read that article top-to-bottom.

If your grip starts failing at 45kg for rows then you just have a very weak grip right now and need to devote serious training to it. I was in your shoes (most likely weaker) when I started out. I put my straps away for a year or so and really fought through death-gripping every weight I touched and it paid off in the end. It makes a huge difference in your shoulder and elbow joints when you get your grip to the same level as the rest of your strength.


Your grip fail at 45kgs Barbell rows or Dumbbell rows? Because I am complexed by grip doing only 100kgs rows overhand after the surgeries ahahah

Then you should even add some grip work. I used dumbbell farmer’s walk (because I don’t have the apparatus), two-handed pinch grip deadlifts, and plate holds. Check out this article:

Also you are now forbidden from straps for a while


Do you use chalk/liquidchalk?

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Hook grip + chalk. I’m glad I started early with hook. Thumbs are used to it by now. Never did a single rep of deadlift with mixed grip nor do I have any plans. I don’t think I’ll ever compete in PL though


Josh Bryant has some youtube videos on improving grip strength (specifically for deadlifting and otherwise as well), check them out.

You probably aren’t gripping the bar “wrong”, it sounds like your grip is just really weak, if you have small hands that can also make things more difficult. Even if you switch to hook grip it’s still worth working on grip strength, especially if rowing 45kg is difficult due to grip.

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I’ve always liked reps and static holds. If you don’t have specialty equipment, use those two methods. Heavy block pulls also.

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Do you use chalk? That can help a bunch especially if you are a sweaty person like me.

I hook grip, and don’t have issues at 250 kg. It did take me a while to figure it out though, and I dropped some deadlifts because I was holding the bar to low in the hands.

Luckily grip is one of the fastest things to gain strength in, but also you can loose it fast (ask rock climbers about this). Things I have done:
Plate pinches
Rolling thunder
Barbell suitcase holds
Deadlifts with pause at top
Plate curls
Farmers walks

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I use hook grip and chalk.

I use straps on all of my working sets for anything more than 1 rep even during meet prep, but I hook grip all my warmups.

I should also add that my strap PR and comp PR with hookgrip are the same for me.

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dude the smooth bars are awful to deadlift with from the start. if someones using the deadlifting bar at my gym, ill just switch my workout up and not do it, because i refuse to use those bars for DL.


Cheers il read that asap, and Na just dumbbell rows, I get two reps at 50 and have to drop it.

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Na no access to chalk unfortunately but I could get some

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If you lift in a commercial gym (like I do), I’d go for liquid chalk. Else you will have gym staff and other members complaining… Chalk makes a ton of a difference and it is also much safer to lift heavy with a secure grip, especially when doing mixed grip. I use hook grip now, but when I was using mixed grip it was just 2-4% weaker than my strapped DL.