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Fact checked by Tyler DiGiovanni, BSBMFACT CHECKED
January 26, 2023
A strong grip will positively impact your performance if you are a weight trainer, a powerlifter, a strength athlete, or are involved in other sports. For many people, the lack of grip strength is a weak link that prevents them from doing their best. However, by strengthening their grip, they can lift more weight, complete more reps and be more skillful in the performance of their chosen sport.
Using a grip strengthener is an effective way to improve your grip strength. Over the last few years, the home-use grip strengthener market has been revamped. As a result, today, there are many options when it comes to buying a grip strengthener, from a traditional hand gripper to a stress relief grip ball and even one that trains individual fingers. For this review, we've gone deep into the grip strengthener market to help distinguish the best from the rest.
In this article, we bring you the seven best grip strengtheners on the current market, separated by category, to help you find exactly what you're looking for. We'll also spell out the research-based benefits of using a grip strengthener and answer the most commonly asked grip strengthener questions.
**There may be affiliate links in this post where we might receive a small commission on purchases you make. We only recommend products we think you will find valuable.**
IronMind Captains of Crush hand grippers set the standard for the market with their range of grip strengtheners. Each device features aircraft-quality aluminum handles and proprietary GR8 springs to provide resistance.
The knurling on the handles feels like you're holding a barbell, helping you improve your grip in the gym. However, you might find the knurling a bit uncomfortable if you have soft palms. In that case, you should wear workout gloves when training with the hand gripper.
We've used more than a few hand grip strengtheners in our day and this product has provided us with a challenging yet rewarding grip strength training workout.
These hand grippers are available in 11 different resistances ranging from 60 to 365 pounds. To give you an idea of how heavy duty the 365-pound hand gripper is, there have, to date, only been four people on the planet who have been able to fully close it!
When you buy an IronMind Captains of Crush hand gripper, you also get a comprehensive guidebook. They are well-priced and available as individual grippers or as a set.
The Gripmaster PROHANDS PRO allows you to strengthen each finger with individual springs. This makes it ideal for rock climbers, pianists, guitarists, and others who rely on finger strength and dexterity.
To use the Gripmaster PROHANDS PRO, you hold it in the palms of your hand, place each finger over the padded surface, and compress the springs. This device has no adjustability, but it is available in a range of resistance levels. The regular version has a max of 9 pounds per finger.
This durable hand gripper is made from ABS plastic and high-grade steel springs.
The Gripmaster PROHANDS PRO offers a larger range of motion than many competing products.
The GD Iron Grip is an adjustable hand grip strengthener that uses progressive resistance to meet your developing strength needs. You can increase the resistance over six levels, from 55 to 198 pounds. That is a good range that will meet the needs of the majority of users.
This is a heavy-duty grip strengthener constructed from heavy-duty iron and aluminum. A cool feature that you don't see on many competitors is a handle extender. This makes the device suitable for people with larger than standard hands. Still, the design of this gripper is compact enough to make it easy to carry with you when you're traveling.
A 5-year warranty covers your purchase of the GD Iron Grip.
The Fat Gripz Xtreme forearm strengthener is a thick concave rubber device that slips onto a barbell. This makes the bar thicker to challenge your grip more. It turns a standard barbell into an axle bar, which is the type used in Strongman competition.
The Fat Gripz Xtreme is made from a thick, flexible rubber-like compound. The Fat Gripz Xtreme expands on the original Fat Gripz by extending the diameter by ½ inch to 2.75 inches. That makes this a super advanced grip trainer. It is suitable for advanced trainers and Strongman athletes. If you are looking for a less hardcore grip challenge, go for the original blue Fat Gripz.
Fat Gripz are constructed from a military-grade material to provide an amazingly durable product, so you won't have to worry about them failing anytime soon. The ends of the grips have been beveled to allow them to fit on a range of barbell types, including EZ curl bars.
The Twist Yo' Wrist grip strengthener is a wind-up roller device that allows you to focus on wrist strength by winding and unwinding a weight. The device consists of a 4-inch diameter polymer roller with a 4-foot climbing-grade cord and steel clip. You need to supply your own resistance. This may be in the form of a pin weight stack or a weight plate that is attached to a looped rope.
The wrist roller is an old classic exercise to build wrist strength. The weight can be rolled in both directions. With the rope on the outside (in front of the roller), you will be working on wrist extension and activation of the wrist extensor muscles. When you have the rope on the inside (behind the roller), you will work on wrist flexion to activate the wrist flexor muscles.
The Twist Yo' Wrist grip strengthener is manufactured in the USA by IronMind, the same company that produces the Captain of Crush gripper. In fact, they bundle the two products at a discounted price. This combination is great for working both the forearms and the wrists.
Each gripper features a non-slip, knurled aluminum handle. This contrasts with the majority of hand grippers, which have plastic handles. As a result, the LoGest gripper feels more heavy-duty and durable. Some people, though, may find that the knurling is a little too aggressive for their palms. Wearing workout gloves will add comfort without detracting from the device's effectiveness.
The LoGest Metal Hand Grip set is intended for intermediate or advanced users. It features rust-proof coil springs. Despite the heavy-duty aluminum handle construction, the grippers are surprisingly lightweight.
As well as the six gripper set, you can also purchase a choice of two-three gripper sets; one with gripper strengths ranging between 100 and 200 pounds and the other with strengths between 250 and 350 pounds.
Your LoGest Metal Hand Grip set will arrive in an attractive storage box. The hand grippers are lightweight and compact enough to be able to be put in your pocket.
The Metolius GripSaver is a rubber squeeze ball that has finger and thumb loops attached. This device was designed by a doctor to strengthen the muscles of the hand, wrist, and forearm. It has proven to be extremely effective as a rehab tool to strengthen the grip.
The Metolius GripSaver allows you to exercise your hand through a full, natural range of motion. It is available in the following firmness levels:
You can purchase each grip strengthener individually or buy all three in a set to save some money and provide for progressive training. You also get an instruction guide to show you how to best use the device.
A grip strengthener is a hand-held device that allows you to exercise your wrist and forearm muscles.
The most common types of grip strengtheners are coil and spring hand grippers. Other forms of grip strengtheners are Fat Gripz, which are slipped over the handle of a barbell or dumbbell to thicken the gripping area of the bar, wrist rollers, and squeeze balls.
Grip strengtheners should be used by anyone who wants to increase their grip and forearm strength. They are especially beneficial for people who have identified that their grip is a weak link when doing weight training exercises. Rock climbers, tennis players, and others who rely on grip strength for their sport will also benefit from using a grip strengthener.
A stronger grip will, in turn, produce a number of flow-on benefits. Here's a rundown of the key research-backed benefits you will get from following a regular grip-strengthening program.
Your hand endurance will improve as your grip becomes stronger. This develops what is called support grip strength. As a result, you will be better prepared to use your hands for extended periods of time without getting tired. Additionally, you will be able to use force for a longer time. It will be possible to work longer without experiencing forearm pain when performing tasks like cutting wood.
You will also appreciate your increased hand strength when carrying stuff like shopping bags or wheelbarrows.¹
Despite what you see in many advertisements for grip-strengthening products, which feature guys with massive forearms, grip training won't result in very much of an increase in forearm muscle mass. The muscles that allow your hand to open and close do extend into the forearm; however, they are very small and will not add very much to the overall size of that muscle group.
Grip strength is a weak point in a variety of weight training exercises. Meaning that grip typically fails before the muscle you're actually targeting is fully activated.
The deadlift is a prime illustration of this. If your grasp is weak, you simply will not be able to complete the necessary number of repetitions to effectively work your glutes, hamstrings, and back muscles before your hold gives out, forcing you to ditch the set early. The pull-up is another example of where this commonly happens.
You may counteract the limiting factor of weak grip strength of exercises that rely on a strong grip by strengthening your grip using strengthening device training.²
Some studies have shown a connection between better mental health and grip strength. Researchers found that persons who consistently engaged in grip-strengthening exercises had better planning and visualization skills. They were quicker to react as well. The same study demonstrated that schizophrenia patients with better levels of mental agility and imagery skills had stronger grips.³
On the other hand, grip strength is one tangible indicator of total muscle strength, which now seems to be related to mental health.
The strength of one's grip was linked to dementia risk in research that appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association, and several studies, including one that was covered by WebMD, have linked dementia risk to physical decline.
Your finger dexterity will increase with the consistent use of a grip-strengthening exercise. This will significantly improve your ability to play an instrument like the guitar without getting tired. Additionally, copywriters and typists will gain from using a grip strengthener to improve their finger dexterity.⁴
A hand gripper will assist you in your return to health if you have an injury that stops you from exercising as usual. The majority of hand grippers allow you to train at different resistance levels. This means that you can start with very light resistance and progressively build it up as you progress through your recovery.
A hand gripper can come in handy when you are unable to work out in the gym or at home as usual. It can assist you psychologically while you wait to resume your full workouts, in addition to getting you back on the path to physical recovery.⁵
It will be simpler for you to perform numerous daily chores if you strengthen your forearms, wrists, and grip. Training grip strength will help you be able to carry groceries, hold a child, garden, and perform a variety of other tasks easier.
With so many options available, it can be tricky deciding on the right grip strengthener to buy. Here are seven factors to consider to make sure you get the right equipment to meet your needs.
There are several different types of grip strengtheners. So, your first decision is which type to buy. Here's an overview:
The majority of people are familiar with these grip strength trainers. The user squeezes the two ends of a coil of steel that has two handles attached to it.
This design's lack of conventional adjustability is a disadvantage. You'll require a number of units to accommodate a range of resistances. The Kootek grip training device on our list is an exception to this rule. Its adaptability is one of its main distinctions. With this kind of gadget, your training is only allowed to simulate crushing.
Spring hand grips have two arms that you squeeze together. Some of them have individual springs for each finger.
Adjustable grip trainers typically have two handles and a spring on top. Spring-based trainers, in contrast to coil strengtheners, are commonly made of plastic. As a result, they may not be as durable.
Extensor trainers can be worn simply by wrapping an elastic band around the fingertips. When we open the hand, the extensor muscles are activated. By adding more resistance to this motion, you can build strength and reduce the risk of injury.
A rubber ball that can be squeezed while being held in hand is another kind of grip-strengthening tool. This is comparable to stress balls, which are suggested as a treatment for anxiety.
Thick rubber grips made to fit barbells and dumbbells are a more recent entry into the market for grip strengtheners. They are made to be used more frequently during pulling workouts than pushing movements. The theory behind them is that by making the diameter of the bar greater, it takes more effort to hold the bar, which will lead to a stronger grip.
While most grip strengtheners make use of the crushing function of the grip, others focus on the pinch function. Your pinch strength relies on the strength between your fingers and thumb. You can test your pinch grip strength in the gym by trying to hold a 20 kg (45lb) smooth-sided plate between your thumb and fingers. Another option is to invest in a pinch gripper block.
Resistance bands are an effective grip training tool. Bands are available in a range of resistance levels. They are usually sold in a set, so you can easily progress from one band to the next as you get stronger. Bands can be stretched for and held to improve grip strength as well as a range of other exercises.
To ensure durability, you should look for a grip strengthener with a steel frame. The handles should be rubberized or knurled. If the handles are covered in a rubber or foam grip material, they should feel comfortable in your hand.
The grip should be sweat and odor-wicking to prevent sweaty build-up in your hands.
You can buy grip strengtheners with an adjustable or fixed grip. Although adjustable devices will cost you more money initially, your investment will balance out in the long run due to needing to upgrade your fixed grip once your strength has exceeded what your strengthener can offer.
One advantage of a fixed resistance hand gripper is that it is usually more durable. That is because it has fewer moving parts than an adjustable model.
The hand gripper should allow you to move your hands from full extension to full contraction. If you want a device that exercises individual fingers, it should also allow for a full range of movement.
Before heading into the hand gripper market, decide what your hand grip training goals are. If you want to develop grip endurance, you should go for a gripper that allows you to sustain a moderate intensity level. On the other hand, if your aim is to build maximum grip power, select a device with a high maximum resistance level.
Do you want to strengthen the individual fingers for activities such as rock climbing? Then you'll need a device that allows you to isolate each finger, such as the Grip Master PRO HANDS Pro.
The price of grip strengtheners tends to vary, depending on the quality of the materials and the adjustability of the device. The seven grip strengtheners in this review range between around $25-$55.
Some manufacturers sell grip strengtheners in sets. That allows you to save money over buying each gripper separately while also allowing for progressive resistance as your grip strengthens.
It is always a good idea to read online reviews for any home fitness product you are considering buying. Doing so will allow you to get feedback from people who have already bought and used the equipment. When it comes to a grip strengthener, look out for feedback on durability, hand grip comfort, and adjustability.
Yes, a grip strengthener is good for building your grip strength and endurance. Grip strengthener benefits also help you to develop forearm strength and build some of the smaller muscles in the forearms. This will only happen, though, if you stick to a regular program of forearm development.
Grip strengtheners are able to develop grip strength and endurance. This will allow you to hold onto a heavy weight for longer, which can be invaluable for deadlifting. A stronger grip will also improve your sports performance in many sports and activities, such as rock climbing.
Researchers have also found a link between increased grip strength and mental health benefits.
Grip strengtheners can build muscle if you use them the right way. The key to building muscle is to train regularly and progressively increase the resistance you are using. You should also use a full range of motion and include such techniques as drop sets, isometrics, and eccentric sets.
Grip strengtheners work the wrist flexors and extensors as well as the brachioradialis, which contributes to the flexion of the forearm. The wrist extensors are the muscles that are on the same side as the back of your hand. The flexors are on the same side as your palm.⁶
We do not recommend using a grip strengthener every day. Just like all the other muscles of your body, your wrist and forearm muscles need time to recover and grow.
A study was conducted in 2005 to identify the recovery rate of the gripping muscles after exercise. It was found that the average rate of full recovery from a grip strength workout was about 24 hours.⁷
We suggest training your grip every second day. Try to do your grip training on days you are not doing a workout involving heavy gripping work such as pull-ups, deadlifts, and rack pulls.
Grip strengthening technology has come a long way in recent years. There are now plenty of excellent models and types of grip trainers to allow you to effectively work your forearms. The best grip strengthener on the market is IronMind Captains of Crush, with its proprietary spring, huge resistance range, and knurled aircraft-grade aluminum handles.
Looking for other products that can level up your performance? Check out the Top Weighted Vests on the market.
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