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Powerlifting and Loaded Carries

I’ll be very specific about what I think you should do, based on a variety of goals you have suggested. I will also tell you what you have said that I believe will be very ineffective for any goal.

If your goal is to get better at carrying heavy things, specifically for upcoming strongman events, there are 2 real options. Pwnisher’s suggestion of heavy sandbags, heavy rocks, or keg carries are all better options than dumbbells, because the difficulty of farmers carry implements is not necessarily the weight itself, but the awkwardness of a loaded carry. Dumbbells will not be heavy enough to be particularly effective, and they simply aren’t large or awkward. SO. If the overall goal is ‘getting stronger at carrying heavy things’, I suggest what pwnisher said.

If your goal is simply to improve grip strength, I wouldn’t do it with dumbbells either. There are 3 things I would do to replace your 3 farmers days. One would be a heavy barbell hold for 3 sets. You will use a weight that you cannot hold for more than 10-25 seconds. On the next grip training day, you would also do 3 sets, but a weight you can hold for 45-60 seconds. This should be very difficult, and will be far more effective at building grip. An alternative would be 1-arm hangs from a bar. These are VERY VERY difficult for most people. I can’t do more than 30 seconds per arm, and I have excellent grip strength. If you can’t perform a 1 arm hang, you can do both arms and still have an excellent training effect. But the reason I suggest 1 arm, if you can do it, is that it will build the unilateral strength involved in farmers carries.


Hmm good point. I realized that i wanted to much. In the end i want to get better at pulling, pushing and squatting becausw im missing strength, in addition i want to improve my grip.

Im looking forward to train at a strongman gym of homegym next year but until then im training in a commercial gym.

The hangs Sounds good and build up what i want. Trank you


Yea that should go a long way for you if your real goal is simply closed grip strength.

I’ll also add that if your desire is ‘real world’ grip strength, aside from barbell strength, you should incorporate some open-handed grip holds. holding yourself on top of a door or a doorway molding with just finger tips, for instance. or holding on to the top of a power rack frame, rather than the bar. Those are all great for grip work. I became very strong with a closed grip early in my lifting career because I deadlifted so often without straps. I eventually found out that while this type of grip was strong for me, when I went rock climbing, things were difficult, because the grip was different. I don’t know if all you care about is gym strength. If that’s all that matters to you, disregard. But if you want to have a strong grip on lots of things, definitely include some open hand work.


Great ideas! I habe used towel holds (with plates), Dumbbell holds (in the plate) different plates together as pinch Grip. Also i used a selfmade wristroller and Captain of crush gripper.

But i rarely made some gains, thats why im searching for new ideas.

I will try the one arm hangs for time and throw in some different grip exercises and farmer variations.

What do you recommand as a set / time routine?:slight_smile:

Just a little additional information on the topic:

Today i did Benchpress and Overhead Press supersetted with Bandpullaparts and “No Money” Exercises. 9 Push Sets and 10 Rear Delt / Trap Sets.

I finished with lateral raise and triceps extension.

For my grip i did hangs from pullupbar and wrist rollers. It felt great and i am really thankful for your input!

I already went through that.

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