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Hand Conditioning: A Hard Body Starts With Strong Hands

Hand Conditioning: A Hard Body Starts With Strong Hands

I’m always hammering away on the importance of mental toughness. As far as I’m concerned in the world of the iron game there are three keys to success. The three main things every strong individual needs in order to achieve goals in strength are mental toughness, the discipline of persistence, and a set of strong hands!

Murphy’s Law

Murphy’s Law states that whatever can go wrong will go wrong. In terms of man’s pursuit of life challenges this is always the case. With any system containing several moving parts there is always the inevitable collapse of that system due to the weakest link failing during the functional process. This can cause a major operation to come crashing down, or to bring some important project straight to a halt!

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When talking about wrestling with the iron there are certainly several moving parts within this system in order for a trainee to pull off the successful build up of a strong hard body. One key element to staving off Murphy’s Law is making sure your hands are conditioned and ready for whatever is demanded of you. Sure there are other factors that might succumb to Murphy’s Law such as technique and mobility, but for many lifts your hands are the first point of contact and when this is the case you want to make sure that they are up for the cause.

Conditioning Your Hands Goes Beyond Grip Strength

Now I’m pretty sure the first thing that came to your mind when I started referring to the hands was grip strength. You would have made a really good guess and you would also have been partially right, but the truth is that I’m not referring to just grip strength alone when talking about conditioning your hands…case in point.

As you can see hand conditioning may involve a number of factors from making sure that you allow your grip strength to develop all while not becoming too dependent on other supports such as straps and gloves which will also inhibit the ability of your skin to develop calluses which are necessary for daily lifting.

Sure grip strength aids in this process, but tough skin is something that I’ve witnessed a lot of people go out of their way to avoid simply because they are soft. The way they go about doing this is that they become too dependent on straps and gloves and instead of using these devices as aids they become crutches for people that can’t function without their use of them.

The Importance Of Grip Strength

Now having pointed this out what is the importance of grip strength and what are some effective ways to go about strengthening our grip? Well there are a few ways to skin this cat my friend. Here’s why grip strength is important along with a few tips for you to improve yours.

As you can see you can achieve a strong grip by simply leveraging the use of some hex dumbbells, some plates, and by simply hanging from a pull up bar for time. The best ideas for optimal performance often end up being the simplest. It doesn’t take a lot to be effective and you can apply these strategies at the end of your training session to give yourself a good finisher for the day’s training.

What kind of hand conditioning do you do in order to ensure the strength and integrity of your hands? Don’t be shy about letting us know by posting up in the comments section here below.

I hope you enjoyed today’s article. Stay strong. Be better. Don’t be a victim!

Related Articles:

Skillful Conditioning: Quality Work To Rest Intervals & Intuitive Recovery

Grip Strength: Don’t Leave Home Without It

Common Sense Strength: Harness Your Natural Human Ability

Training For Symmetry And Performance

Progressing Mobility: A Half Get Up To Optimal Performance

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I'm a Certified Strength And Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and author. I have had over 17 years experience in MMA fitness, strength and conditoning, and athletic performance for most every sport. As an author and specialist I've written close to a million words on fitness and strength. I'm also a Muay Thai practictioner and enjoy helping others to reach their peak potential through fitness and performance.

This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. Hey Brandon,

    I also agree how important a role your hands play in lifting! I have never used gloves of straps over the past years of lifting and my hands have developed calluses that now aid my lifting.

    I have noticed one thing that does hold me back on certain lifts is my grip strength. My hands/forearms usually cramp up when performing dumbbell curls for example. This is something I am working on.

    All the best,
    Harry Simonis

    1. Thanks for the feedback Harold! Yes, like you I have some nasty calluses for lifting and it’s a real kick to the balls when one of those things happen to rip. I experienced that just recently (as pictured with my hand in the article photo). I will use straps for super heavy lifting, but work hard at training to allow my grip to develop by lifting raw. I’m sure your grip is rock solid my friend. Thanks again for your feedback!

  2. Couldn’t agree more with this post. Many of my friends were making fun of me for having ripped hands due to working out but now I am proud of it. Thanks Again. ::Great Post::

    1. Yes, I think it’s vitally important in the training process to allow for other adaptions…in this case being the toughness of the skin, calluses, and finger strength. The hands are at the starting point of the pursuit of strength and if the hands aren’t ready then nothing else will be. Once your hands toughen you’ll be doing the laughing while your friends will be wondering how you got your gains! Thanks so much again for your feedback my friend!

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