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Time For Straps?


My deadlifting, while almost "heavy", is getting too heavy for my grip to handle. I feel like my form goes to shit because I can't keep a good grip (I focus on that).

Time for straps? Obviously this isn't the ideal situation. I cannot train grip. I'm a guitar performance major--I can't afford to under-perform while practicing because of DOMS or fatigue.

Straps? Or should I just focus on deadlifting lighter weights and try to work my way up?

Thanks in advance.


I've had the same problem. I train at home and when it is humid, I couldn't hold the bar. I got some chalk and that solved the problem.

I play guitar also. Deadlifting hasn't hindered my performance at all. If it hurts yours, use straps. If you aren't competing, why does it matter?


Yeah, kind of what Chewie said: What are your goals? If you're not competing in a strength sport that doesn't allow straps to be used, than there's no reason to avoid using them on your heavier lifts.

You'll gain a lot more strength and muscle by using more weight and proper form with straps, than not using them and sacrificing both those categories.


or you could try rack pulls with heavier weight. this will bring up your grip faster. I would try chalk before straps personally, but if you're not competing then its just up to you.


I agree with the if your not competing then use the straps if you need them. I use them on all my top sets of deads and rows and some width movements because I want the focus on my back and not whether or not i can hold the bar/machine.


I found that doing a lot of grip work for back, mostly chins/pulls has made my forearms really big (for me). This wouldn't be a bad thing but I'm training for aesthetic reasons and big forearms make my upper arms look average. Straps FTW


Thanks guys.

I'm not competing, just want to look good nekkid, and be able to throw around some weight.

Essentially I work my forearms 2-4 hours a day when I practice (classical guitar). They're already pretty large for my frame.

Straps it is.


I'm in the same boat...currently deadlifting 385x5 but my grip is faltering and messing up my form.

On the one hand I respect Stuart McRobert and Brooks Kubik who say that if you can't lift a weight without straps, you can't lift it and if you use straps you'll end up with underdeveloped hands/forearms on a well-developed body.

On the other hand Jason Ferrugia makes sense when he says that there's no point robbing yourself of untapped growth potential in size and strength because your grip is letting you down.

I'm thinking maybe straps for deadlifts, which I don't do for my grip anyway, and then do some specific grip exercises to strengthen by grip.


The one thing that instantly helped my grip on the deadlift was switching from a pronated (palms towards you) grip, to an alternated grip where your dominant right hand is pronated and your left (weaker) hand is supinated - palm facing away.

Might sound awkward but it works.

Just switching my grip, I added 25 pounds during the same workout without my grip failing me... try it!


Interesting you bring up the guitar and dead lifting. I don't get any long term problems but I cannot play well after deads. It totally screws me up. I usually lift earlier in the day but on my current routine I do back on friday. Only thing is I have a gig every friday playing jazz and I have to wait till I'm done with that to do my w/o.

Anyways I just busted out my straps again and I can lift more with them on any pulling exercise, but I only use them for bent over rows over 225 and pullups and thats if Im working bi's too. BTW I'm more of a bodybuilder than a powerlifter, but I do like improving my strength.


Yep, definitely agree with the don't be afraid of straps crowd.

The funny thing is that if you make great progress in maximal strength with straps you will also make progress on your maximal mixed grip strength.

I still like to work up to maximal non strap loads before I do my maximum strap load sets just to make sure my grip gets some love too.


Thanks for the replies friends. I bought some straps last week: big ole $6 on some cotton straps.

They've worked great so far, I was able to concentrate more on form and move some more weight. I'll probably just use them for deadlifting unless another use comes up.