Kettlebell S&S and Grip/Hand/Wrist Strength

Status
Closed Thread. (Continue Discussion of This Topic by Starting a New Thread.)

Dayz

Level 6 Valued Member
Hi all. This turned into a really long post so I apologise. I have some questions about improving grip strength specifically for S&S and generally for broader applications.

I am currently on Simple and Sinister using a mix of the 32 and 40kg bell for swings and the 32 for TGUs (can't even roll to elbow with the 40 yet!).

While S&S gives full-body strength (including grip!), I nevertheless feel grip strength is my personal weak link. I feel hand strength is my limiting factor for swings, and wrist strength my limiting factor for get-ups. I also think that grip strength is my limiting factor generally in 'real life' applications.

I assume that by continuing with S&S, my specific grip strength improve over time, allowing me to complete all of my swings and get-ups with the 40. Surely, this will improve my general grip strength for other 'real life' applications as well.

My questions are:
1. Is there anything in particular I can do to improve my grip specifically for swings and get-ups?

2. Does S&S leave out certain types of grip strength? And, if so, what is the most efficient way to cover the gaps? (meaning best bang for your buck, like S&S itself)

3. Does S&S cover allforms of grip strength, including crush, support and pinch grip, and finger strength, thumb strength and wrist strength?


Thank you in advance!
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
Hi all. This turned into a really long post so I apologise. I have some questions about improving grip strength specifically for S&S and generally for broader applications.

I am currently on Simple and Sinister using a mix of the 32 and 40kg bell for swings and the 32 for TGUs (can't even roll to elbow with the 40 yet!).

While S&S gives full-body strength (including grip!), I nevertheless feel grip strength is my personal weak link. I feel hand strength is my limiting factor for swings, and wrist strength my limiting factor for get-ups. I also think that grip strength is my limiting factor generally in 'real life' applications.

I assume that by continuing with S&S, my specific grip strength improve over time, allowing me to complete all of my swings and get-ups with the 40. Surely, this will improve my general grip strength for other 'real life' applications as well.

My questions are:
1. Is there anything in particular I can do to improve my grip specifically for swings and get-ups?

2. Does S&S leave out certain types of grip strength? And, if so, what is the most efficient way to cover the gaps? (meaning best bang for your buck, like S&S itself)

3. Does S&S cover allforms of grip strength, including crush, support and pinch grip, and finger strength, thumb strength and wrist strength?


Thank you in advance!
From my perspective as an S&S practioner, rock climber, and grip enthusiast...

1. I have never found Grip to be the limiting issue in Swings or get-ups. Not even close. In fact in swings, I find that many people over-Grip the darn thing. Not needed in my opinion. Doing swings should develop the grip strength needed to do Swings.

2. Yes. S&S leaves out a boatload of grip strength types.

3. No it does not even come close. It misses: Pinch, crimp, open hand, and thumb and finger strength in general.

Grip strength is highly specific.
Will S&S help your grip strength? You bet! However...if you want real-world all-terrain grip strength you will need to do stuff other than S&S.
 

Bret S.

Level 7 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
I'm no grip expert so everything @offwidth said..

I personally have few problems with grip as I am a construction contractor. That being said I still do grip work. Mainly:

- Pull-up bar hangs for time
- Heavy carries
- Heavy bottom up clean and holds

I also do alot of pull ups and pressing, on all these I'm constantly trying to crush the bar/handles..

Seems to be working well so far. You may require more thumb strength work? As I said there are others on the forum more knowledgeable than I on specific grip work..
 

Dayz

Level 6 Valued Member
From my perspective as an S&S practioner, rock climber, and grip enthusiast...

1. I have never found Grip to be the limiting issue in Swings or get-ups. Not even close. In fact in swings, I find that many people over-Grip the darn thing. Not needed in my opinion. Doing swings should develop the grip strength needed to do Swings.

2. Yes. S&S leaves out a boatload of grip strength types.

3. No it does not even come close. It misses: Pinch, crimp, open hand, and thumb and finger strength in general.

Grip strength is highly specific.
Will S&S help your grip strength? You bet! However...if you want real-world all-terrain grip strength you will need to do stuff other than S&S.
Thank you. Are there any specific movements you think are the best 'bang for your buck' that could help? I realise there are a tonne of grip strength types...but is there anything that hits quite a few nicely and efficiently? Or do I need a more varied program?

Thanks again!
 

Provx

Level 4 Valued Member
Thank you. Are there any specific movements you think are the best 'bang for your buck' that could help? I realise there are a tonne of grip strength types...but is there anything that hits quite a few nicely and efficiently? Or do I need a more varied program?

Thanks again!

S&S has tremendously helped my hand and forearm strength on its own. If you really want to take it up a notch what i have been doing is taking my 24kg. out and going for a quater to half mile walk farmers carrying switching hands as i get tired.
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
Thank you. Are there any specific movements you think are the best 'bang for your buck' that could help? I realise there are a tonne of grip strength types...but is there anything that hits quite a few nicely and efficiently? Or do I need a more varied program?

Thanks again!
It really depends on your goals... grip is very specific for what you intend to use it for.
I am biased of course. But if I were to pick 3 things (other than what you get from S&S) I would go for fingertip hangs, plate or block pinches, and towel hangs.

(Now... heavy farmers walks are great for grip as well, plus you get additional benefits...)
 

rayboner

Level 6 Valued Member
Pavel touched on it Sinple & Sinister; IronMind has those Expand Your Hand bands. I went to their website to check it out and picked up a few of their CoC grippers. I’ve made great progress in strength and forearm size using the grippers and bands in a gtg style throughout the day.
Towel hangs/pull ups from a bar are also great.
 

North Coast Miller

Level 8 Valued Member
Rehabbing my wrist surgery I used to bunch up a towel. Lay it on a table and put your fingers on one corner. Start bunching pinkie to index, straighten out and reverse. It gets brutal quickly for such a simple exercise.

Grip strength is very specific.

When I was more into MA and Chin Na, I tie-rapped a bundle of 1/2" PVC tubing together and used to squeeze it to condition my fingers - seek the gaps, pierce them.

As I train with more grip load, I notice some movements aggravate my tendonitis, some alleviate it. Static hangs help with interior elbow pain, make anterior elbow pain worse.

You have to get creative.

Specific to the OP, rhythmic gripping while doing swings is a huge help. For TGU the goose neck grip is good to cultivate.

Relax the grip whenever possible. Eg, when throwing a punch the hand should be loose right up till it is about to land. Max acceleration and max rigidity when it lands.
 

Bret S.

Level 7 Valued Member
Certified Instructor
what i have been doing is taking my 24kg. out and going for a quater to half mile walk farmers carrying switching hands as i get tired

Doing this your grip will get stronger because it has to.. Your forearms will pop as well. I like this as it's truly a workman's program which will force adaptation ala Steve Justa type philosophy, his stuff just works IMHO
 

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
The suitcase carry is good for grip strength - walking around holding the kettlebell like it's a suitcase. This is a great exercise, period. It's not in S&S, but so what?

I've got long, skinny fingers. I'm finding swinging the 40kg bell 1handed is very challenging, perhaps because my "Russian"-style bell has a very thick handle.

I'm not sure that grip strength is the limiting factor necessarily. It may seem so, but it's also more than possible that it is the whole combined body effort that is falling a bit short.

I'd like to move up to 40kg in S&S for both exercises, but honestly, the 32 is good enough if that's all I can manage. Seems odd though since I'm 6ft2 and 220lbs.
 

StanStan

Level 4 Valued Member
I would argue that for those of use who do need a strong grip in their day-to-day activities, grip strength can be a limiting factor for swings.

1H swings will improve your hook grip, but that's about it. As a non-climber who tried wall climbing recently, I found that there was very little carryover, and the strength needed to grip with the fingertips just wasn't there.

IMO TGUs do not really improve grip, as you could, in theory, perform them with an open hand. Unless you are holding 2 bells in one hand, in which case you need a tight grip to prevent slipping.
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
I would argue that for those of use who do need a strong grip in their day-to-day activities, grip strength can be a limiting factor for swings.

1H swings will improve your hook grip, but that's about it. As a non-climber who tried wall climbing recently, I found that there was very little carryover, and the strength needed to grip with the fingertips just wasn't there.

IMO TGUs do not really improve grip, as you could, in theory, perform them with an open hand. Unless you are holding 2 bells in one hand, in which case you need a tight grip to prevent slipping.

TGU's may not directly improve grip, I agree. However, I think that they do a reasonable job of targeting the wrist. (At least they do for me...) Strong wrists are a good thing, especially when wanting to work on advanced grip training.

Grip is an interesting thing in relation to climbing. Many people just starting out in climbing (especially at climbing gyms ) find that their grip fails (and/or forearms get pumped) early. This is usually because they are lacking in technique. Body positioning and footwork especially. So they overcompensate by over gripping, and thus find their grip failing. This is almost always the case.

That being said.... the other side of the coin is this...
When a person actually gets good at climbing, the first strength aspect that they should train is indeed finger strength. Because once you have exhausted improvements in technique, and mental aspects, grip most likely will be the limiting factor.
 

North Coast Miller

Level 8 Valued Member
IMO TGUs do not really improve grip, as you could, in theory, perform them with an open hand. Unless you are holding 2 bells in one hand, in which case you need a tight grip to prevent slipping.

When I'm doing TGU and Bent Press I often use an open hand. There is forearm activation to keep the hand from being pulled back, but no mandatory grip work.
 

MarkSch

Level 6 Valued Member
I needed extra grip work, and I found Captains of Crush grippers and 32K/40K farmer's walks very helpful in achieving Simple.
 
Status
Closed Thread. (Continue Discussion of This Topic by Starting a New Thread.)
Top Bottom