T Nation

Grip Strength = Forearm Size?

[quote]akmcsnarfy wrote:
I agree with the fact that having a strong bench enables you to build good pecs but to give someone the assumption that “strong chest=big chest” could be leading them in the wrong direction.[/quote]

Just in case you did read this and it was confusing I meant that along with gaining muscle strength, it is also good to do higher rep exercises that put stress on the muscle for longer duration (in the example of chest, this would be dumbbells/flyes for higher reps) to ensure maximum stress on the muscle. In no way was I insinuating that strength=/=size, it’s just not guaranteed that size gain will be proportional to strength gains.

You must have a roller that is supported, or suspended. In the past, I used a piece of PVC pipe that I slid over the pin in the power rack. This way you don’t have to isometric front delt raise as you roll. As a result, you can pile the weights on. 75 for 3rolls is a joke.

You’ll need like a minimum of 2 plates hanging. An advanced weight would be like 250 pounds. As far as where to start and how to progress just put some weight on and roll both ways. Then add weight and go again. If you can still finish, add more weight and go again. Stop when it’s pretty tough but do-able. Next workout do 2 rolls with that tough weight. Next workout do three rolls. When that weight gets easy, add some more plates and start over.

If you plan to be a Captain of Crush you need to go heavy! If you want to be a grip monster with huge forearms check out Magnus Samulelsson.

When you can reverse curl the 60 pound dumbbells, you will have some big forearms. But that’s far in the future. reverse dumbbell curls are a tough exercise because its difficult to hold the bells/wrists in position. If you’re a beginner, you may only be able to use the 20’s. That’s not enough weight.

In the mean time, make progress on reverse curls with the barbell and dumbbell hammer curls. You can really load up on the hammer curls because the neutral grip puts your wrists in a strong position.

Another way to set up the wrist roller is to put it over one of the pins in your power rack. This way the roller is supported by the pin and not your shoulders. You can focus on your forearms, and moving your wrists through a full range of motion. With this setup you can really pile the weight on. Also if you set the pin at shoulder or even eye level you will have much more time under tension. Go heavy on this! Shoot for multiple rolls with 135 in the short term and make 300 pounds a long term goal.

When you are able to reverse dumbbell curl 60x10 you will have some big forearms. But reverse dumbbell curls are tough because of the wrist position you have to maintain. If you’re a beginner, doing them till failure at the end of your workout you may be using just the 20’s. Try dumbbell hammer curls as well. The neutral grip puts your wrists in a strong position so you can lift bigger weights. Barbell reverse curls are also good, and easier to load up. You can do these at the end of your workout till failure for a pump, or earlier in the session for lower reps and more strength.

You can get more of a grip focus out of your dead lift workouts by using fewer fingers to hold the bar. For example do your first warm up set using just your index and middle fingers. Add more weight and use your index, middle and ring fingers. Next you can use a thumbless or false grip. Finally wrap your thumbs around the bar for your heaviest sets.

If you get creative you can use this technique on lots of pulling exercises. Climbers do all kinds of chin ups, even with just 1 finger. Start easy, and progress slowly and steadily. Finger lifts can hurt at first so ease into them.

As far as a workout, you could do something like;

Deadlift, add a few sets to stress the grip
plate pinch hold, light weight long hold
reverse dumbbell curls, high reps

a couple days later try

Hammer Curls, sets of 8, start light add weight and do sets till its hard to get 8
Dumbell Farmer’s Walk, start light, pick a distance and keeping adding weight till that distance is tough
Wrist Roller, start light roll forward and back, thats 1 “set.” Add weight till its difficult.

when you feel ready

Plate Pinch hold, heavy weight for short time. If you can’t hold at least 25’s with 1 hand, use both hands.
Reverse curls, medium weight medium reps
Barbell wrist curls, standing with the barbell behind your back, reps till failure

another one could be

Grippers
Shruggs with dumbbells, reps till grip gives out
wrist roller for a few light sets.

as far as progression, pick an exercise. Go heavy for low reps or short time for your first exercise of your grip workout when your fresh. 2nd exercise should be moderate weight for more reps or longer time than the 1st lift. 3rd exercise is like a pump till failure lift.

Start really light and really easy and add weight for 4-5 sets until you get to a difficult but do able set. Next time you do that exercise, maybe 5 days or a week later, warm up and do 2 work sets with the whatever was difficult but do-able last week. Then, just kind of add weight or time/reps as you get stronger. Don’t worry about “percentages” just do what you can handle. The lighter and easier you start the longer you can make steady progress with no injuries.

[quote]FlatsFarmer wrote:
Another way to set up the wrist roller is to put it over one of the pins in your power rack. This way the roller is supported by the pin and not your shoulders. You can focus on your forearms, and moving your wrists through a full range of motion. With this setup you can really pile the weight on. Also if you set the pin at shoulder or even eye level you will have much more time under tension. Go heavy on this! Shoot for multiple rolls with 135 in the short term and make 300 pounds a long term goal.

When you are able to reverse dumbbell curl 60x10 you will have some big forearms. But reverse dumbbell curls are tough because of the wrist position you have to maintain. If you’re a beginner, doing them till failure at the end of your workout you may be using just the 20’s. Try dumbbell hammer curls as well. The neutral grip puts your wrists in a strong position so you can lift bigger weights. Barbell reverse curls are also good, and easier to load up. You can do these at the end of your workout till failure for a pump, or earlier in the session for lower reps and more strength.[/quote]

thanks for the tips, but im having trouble understanding how to set up your kind of wrist roller. could you/ anyone else please send me a link to what that may look like

thanks a lot, im defintely gonna take ur advice

search the web for images like “wrist roller in power rack” or “wrist roller machine” or “homemade wrist roller in rack” for inspiration. There are a variety of arrangements, depending on what sort of equipment you have around.

Also this really helps…

I can’t help but think of a bunch of wirey mechanics I know whi have sausage fingers and pop-eye forearms. I reckon do stuff around the house and those puppies will grow.

Whoa, that’s pretty awesome. I can’t remember ever seeing reverse curls on the cable before. It looked so cool, I tried it just now at the house with a mini band. Not only does it hit the top side of the forearm, but I could also feel it the middle of my back. I’m going to try this in mu upper body warm up for a couple weeks. It seems like it will fire up the muscles that support the elbow and the external rotators in the back that you need for bench press arch.

Thanks for posting that Badger. If I get super hype, I might put my Fat Gripz handle on the cable handle.