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I'm Thinking About Using Straps

I’ve never used them before but I’m starting to consider it because I would be able to do more on my deadlifts if I didn’t have to grip all that weight as much and I wouldn’t mind doing direct forearm work.

What do you guys think?

I used to be real anti-strap until recently.

As far as bodybuilding purposes, I’d rather be able to concentrate on the muscles being worked instead of worrying about my grip failing.

If you are after complete development, then you’ll likely need to do some direct forearm work anyway.

Most of the time, I won’t use straps for the first few sets when my grip is strong and as I tire out, I’ll use straps for my remaining sets.

[quote]AngryVader wrote:
I used to be real anti-strap until recently.

As far as bodybuilding purposes, I’d rather be able to concentrate on the muscles being worked instead of worrying about my grip failing.

If you are after complete development, then you’ll likely need to do some direct forearm work anyway.

Most of the time, I won’t use straps for the first few sets when my grip is strong and as I tire out, I’ll use straps for my remaining sets.[/quote]

Nice post.

Do you think I could find some at like Sports Authority or something?

Any sporting goods store will have basic straps, but in my opinion, the best straps available are from APT.

www.prowriststraps.com

You can also get them here:

http://www.elitefts.com/

Straps are just another way to vary your training. I haven’t met a serious lifter that doesn’t use them at least some of the time.

Obviously the more important your grip is to your goals the more you have to include dedicated heavy training without straps.

Some exercises become “Grip” exercises if you don’t use straps.

I think if you’re doing double-overhand shrugs or double-overhand rack pulls without straps, then you’re still doing a legit exercise, but you’re primarily training your grip strength and your limiting the involvement of the muscles that are actually moving the bar by limiting the weight you could be using with straps.

Almost all the Pro Strongmen train using wrist straps, and their sport is extremely grip intensive. But that’s because they’ve got exercises that they always use straps on and exercises they don’t use straps on.

They NEVER use straps on:
Axle Cleans
Farmers Walk
Atlas Stones (Duh)
Log Curls

They frequently use straps on:
Deadlifts
Pull-downs
Rows

The result? Huge and Strong Forearms.

For bodybuilding purposes, I think you might be better off using straps nearly all the time so you can save your forearms for when you do grip and forearm isolation exercises. This way your forearms have plenty of time to recover between forearm workouts no matter how much pulling you’re doing.

Having said that, doing strapless Kroc Rows makes you a man’s man.

I’ve been pulling with straps for over a year, and have never pulled anything over 515 without straps, until last week.

The other day, I pulled 600 without straps, and my grip was not even close to giving out.

I also do weighted pull-ups with straps.

If anything, my grip has improved with everything else, in spite of using straps.

This is debated a lot around here. I’m pretty much with everyone else, it’ll help you pull up some big weight on shrugs or deads, but make sure you do direct forearm work with things like farmer’s walks, or use thick bars when curling, benching, etc.

An alternative to help keeping grip without straps may be chalk. Just something to think about.

For forearm work how does this sound.

3 sets of farmer’s walk between 30-60 seconds.

3 sets of wrist curls.

How often would I do something like this?

I suggest you use them sparingly like honey on oatmeal. I use them exclusively for back day. I ,like most, dont like my grip to give before my back during heavy bent-over rows. They are an awesome tool but they can hinder your grip strength if you rely on them to much. my two centavos

I only use them for Deadlifts, Rows and sometimes pulldowns, also cleans. I don’t want to miss a lift because I couldn’t hold onto the weight

I use straps when I deadlift… why shouldnt I?

If my forearms have to “suffer” because I want to put a extra 20lbs on my deadlift, or get more reps with a weight. Then fuck them, Il do curls if I want big forearms.

Maybe if your forearms weren’t proportionally weak you would be able to hold onto the weight…meaning maybe you shouldn’t use straps …unless you really have to inflate your ego with the extra few pounds then its cool

You could use chalk, like someone else said. Or get stronger mitts.

I personally don’t touch straps. The lightest weight I work with for deadlifts is 385 and no straps are used. Same for my 3 plate + change shrugfest. Your grip strength should go up with your back strength. My grip used to be my weakpoint with deadlifts. Now it’s my strongpoint.

My gym doesn’t allow chalk, so I use the towels they leave out for people to wipe stuff off. It serves as a great grip so my hands don’t slip.

[quote]Skrussian wrote:
Maybe if your forearms weren’t proportionally weak you would be able to hold onto the weight…meaning maybe you shouldn’t use straps …unless you really have to inflate your ego with the extra few pounds then its cool[/quote]

STFU

[quote]Mega Newb wrote:
Skrussian wrote:
Maybe if your forearms weren’t proportionally weak you would be able to hold onto the weight…meaning maybe you shouldn’t use straps …unless you really have to inflate your ego with the extra few pounds then its cool

STFU

[/quote]

Agreed. Is everyone just repeating the dogma that straps make your forearms weak?

Some people claim to truly experience grip degradation from using straps. I am not doubting that. If you’re a competitive powerlifter, this is probably even more of an issue, as you are not allowed to use straps in competition.

However, as I have stated very clearly, my grip has IMPROVED since using straps, while allowing me to deadlift with sufficient volume to effectively hit my back.

All this talk of “inflating your ego” is usually made by people who are too weak to lift the weight WITH OR WITHOUT STRAPS.

So whose ego is REALLY being inflated?

If you want to lift more weight with your deadlift, for more reps, then by all means, use straps. If your grip suffers, alternate some strapless pulls in there, and maybe some direct grip work. Or, your grip might actually NOT suffer, contrary to what everyone espouses.

If I sound like I’m ranting, its just because no matter how high my deadlift climbed, people kept saying “Yeah but now you gotta do it strapless.”

Well, I did pull it without straps, and my grip wasn’t even close to failing me.

/rant

Will straps help you reach a goal? Then by all means use them. Who gives a shit what some powerlifting icon or fitness guru says. It’s your body and your goals.

Yeah I’m not looking to be a powerlifter. I’m just looking to be big and ripped.