Does a hand gripper really add size to your forearms, or is it just a marketing ploy? Today, we’re going to answer this question, and more. If you’re ready, let’s get started!
It seems like the market for hand grippers and grip trainers is packed to the brim with pictures of customers with chunky arm muscles. Brands promise us if we train our grip, we’ll be able to improve our arm gains too.
The question is, how much can we believe the claim?
Grip trainers aren’t designed specifically to build muscle in your arms – that’s where dumbbells and traditional weights generally do the best work. Of course, this doesn’t mean a grip trainer won’t do anything for your arms at all.
If you learn how to use your tools properly, you can get more value out of your grip trainers. Here’s what you need to know about using your grippers to boost forearm growth.
Will hand grippers increase forearm size?
Grip trainers have a number of benefits beyond giving you an awesome handshake. By improving the quality of your grip, these little devices can increase endurance and ensure you can get the most out of your time at the gym.
After all, while weights might be the key to building your muscles, you’d have a hard time lifting those weights without a sturdy grip.
Good grip strength gives you the confidence to push yourself further when lifting weights, so you can increase your muscle gains (safely) throughout your entire body. Grip trainers can also have a more direct impact on your forearm muscles, provided you know how to use them correctly.
A strong forearm training program can leverage gripper training to increase forearm mass, keep muscles from cramping between workouts, and more.
How do hand grippers build forearms?
So, how exactly will a hand gripper improve your grip strength? Well, the most obvious way is by strengthening your grip – as mentioned above. The better your grip, the more comfortable you’re going to be pushing yourself to achieve a harder workout.
Many lifters fail to reach their true potential on all kinds of workouts due to a lack of grip.
Aside from lifting weights, there are ton of other bodyweight exercises you can do to improve forearm strength, including pull-ups and push-ups. However, if your grip strength fails, the rest of the exercise fails too.
To ensure you can stay strong, you’ll need to start treating your grip training just like you’d treat leg day or chest day.
If your goal is to improve the muscles in your forearms, try something like this:
- Train your forearms using a standard set of reps, just as you would with any muscle group. This might include deadlifts and pull-ups to target your arms.
- Perform around 10-12 reps of grip squeezes for each set.
- Do at least five sets for each arm, allowing for 60-90 seconds of rest between sets.
Working your muscles at high resistance during workouts and allowing plenty of time for rest can significantly improve your chances of gains. Don’t make the mistake of using your grippers during your rest days to try and continue the growth.
Remember, your forearms will need some time off to recover and re-built muscle, so it’s best to build gripper training into your workout around 1-3 times per week, with one day of rest at a minimum between sessions.
Using hand grippers to increase forearm strength
Another point to keep in mind if you’re using grippers to improve your forearm strength, is you’ll need to continuously increase the challenge level. As you get stronger, you’ll need to upgrade the level of resistance in your grippers.
You can find a decent number of grippers which offer different resistance levels for you to try as you progress.
In general, whenever the gripper portion of your workout starts to feel easy, you should think about increasing resistance. If you really want to ramp things up a notch, you can also consider using forearm squeezer kits or forearm grippers.
Here’s a great example of a forearm training kit you can try to enhance your exercise sessions. You can also try basic forearm squeezer tubes like these.
One excellent way to make the most out of grippers for forearm training purposes, is to use them to correct your muscle imbalances. After all, most people are dominant with one hand, so your forearms may not be equal in strength.
To find out if you need to do some balancing, use a measuring tape to find the circumference of your arms at the largest point – usually about 2 inches below the elbow.
If one forearm is larger than the other, perform your reps using the smallest arm first, then the larger arm second. Once you’re done with your reps, perform a set of extra reps with the smaller arm, and be sure to do an extra set of reps with the gripper too.
Work on your grip to improve your forearm strength
Working on your grip with the right set of hand grippers will make a huge difference to your ability to exercise correctly.
Ultimately, if you don’t have good grip, the rest of your form will suffer – whether you’re doing push ups or lifting weights. In between sessions of grip training, make sure you explore the performance of your grip by trying exercises like farmer’s walks, reverse-grip bicep curls, and deadlifts.
Still have questions about hand grippers and forearm size? Here are some quick FAQs to help…
Q: Should you use your grippers every day?
Generally, it’s not the best idea to use grip strengtheners every day. Not only will you risk injuring yourself because you’re giving your muscles no time to reform and heal, but you could potentially put yourself at risk of repetitive strain too.
Just as the muscles elsewhere in your body need time to heal in between training sessions, your grip and forearms need resting time too. After a workout, give your muscles a chance to rest with at least one day off.
Q: Will a hand gripper increase my wrist size?
A hand gripper can help you improve the size of your arms, but it won’t have a direct impact on your wrists. Your wrists don’t have a great deal of muscle in the first place. They’re made up of tendons and bones, so there’s nothing to really work on growing here.
Q: Can hand grippers improve grip strength?
Hand grippers are fantastic for developing grip strength. The better your grip strength, the better you’ll perform in all parts of life – not just exercises at the gym. Imagine how much easier it will be to lift things and pull items around the house when you’ve got a powerful grip to help you.
Progressively training with stronger grippers will give you the extra control you need.
Q: Are hand grippers good for you?
Some people will get by just fine without hand grippers. However, if you’ve ever noticed you’re struggling with a bit of a weak grip, or you have a hard time with your form at the gym, a gripper might be a good idea.
Hand grippers are excellent for building both grip and forearm strength at the same time, while allowing you to manage some of the imbalances between your arms. You do need to learn how to use your grippers properly though, which means knowing not to use them every day.
Are grip strengtheners the best way to build forearms?
The best way to build forearm strength is with a consistent, carefully chosen workout routine. You’re not going to get ultra-powerful forearms just because you’re carrying a set of grippers around with you all day.
However, you can definitely improve your chances of a good workout with the right set of hand grippers.
Think of your grip strengtheners as the extra accessory in your workout, which makes building your forearms a little easier.
They’ll give you the control and strength you need to engage in more challenging workout routines, plus grip strengtheners will add more challenge to your routine at times too.
If you’re will to add one to your routine, a grip strengthener could be a great investment.
Blitz yourself better!
Now read these:
—How to get stronger hands
—Do hand grips actually work?
—Best hand grip strengtheners