- Are you currently interested in learning how to develop significant strength for your big lifts?
- Are you interested in learning about a unique training strategy to drastically increase all of your big lifts?
- Are you interested in learning about a secret weapon to supercharge your strength for all movements?
By now I know you’re probably getting curious about what I might be talking about. The fact is that your ability to improve your big lifts boils down to several factors ranging from technique, to your programming, and even your nutrition. However, for today’s article I want to talk about how there is another secret weapon to help you improve your big lifts while giving your strength and muscle gains a serious upgrade.
Grip Strength For Big Lifts
So one way you can have a drastic impact on your big lift PR’s is by increasing your grip strength. Yes, I know what you’re thinking, but coach this is obvious, right? Well not so much…at least not in some of the ways you might be thinking.
Sure a stronger grip will help you with pulling that heavy deadlift. I mean if your grip is giving out at with that heavy load it can cause you to miss the big lift. This particular example seems pretty obvious.
However, I’m talking about this for other reasons as well. One different standpoint is by having a more powerful crushing grip you can significantly impact your your barbell back squat for instance.
Irradiation Principle In Play For Big Lifts
That’s right, having powerful forearms that can trigger a powerful grip will help you in other lifts. This is based on a concept known as the irradiation principle. So what is the irradiation principle?
The mechanism of muscular irradiation refers to the ability of a muscle that is performing an action (of any kind – it doesn’t really have to be specifically concentric, isometric or eccentric in nature) and can generate more tension. This is done because it is being “innervated” better by the surrounding muscles’ contractions.
In other words, you can have one muscle group activated for a specific movement. For a simple explanation let’s say you’re performing a barbell back squat.
Here the muscles that are obviously going to be performing the back squat movement are primarily going to be your legs and hips. However once the bar is on your back crush it with your grip and fire your upper back muscles. What you’ll find is that bar is going to immediately feel lighter during the back squat.
This is absolutely true because with this universally “accepted” rule, a muscle can generate a better firing potential into another nearby muscle. With this added tension you produce the added force. This is the case because it will strengthen muscular links and eliminate any bleeds in power throughout your body’s kinetic chain.
Big Lifts: The Back Squat Experiment
In this example by firing your upper back muscles and crushing your grip around the bar as you hit that back squat you’re going to produce a stronger squat…period! If you don’t believe me then the next time you get up underneath the bar allow your hands and shoulders to relax while performing a set of back squats.
Once you do this then immediately perform another set with the same exact weight. This time crush the bar and fire those traps and upper back muscles as you perform the barbell back squat. I guarantee you’ll immediately feel the difference and your squat will drastically improve right away!
By applying this principle you’ll also train your body to be more resistant to injury. This is a hell of thing to know and apply across the board with your training.
In fact, this will help you in other lifts too such as your presses and cleans. This is a powerful principle to understand, but it can only come with practice and with a deliberate focus on the necessary muscle groups. As another example you can apply this principle with added focus on your forearms in order to improve your grip strength which will also apply to your big lifts.
Grip Strength For Big Lifts: The Takeaway
The key to improving your big lifts is understanding that you’ve got to have a stronger grip in order to better transmit tension between muscles. Assuming you have a solid handle on your lifting technique you can drastically enhance your big lifts. All you need to do is increase the size and strength of your forearms and grip. The application of the irradiation principle will help you to produce greater quality strength gains on your big lift days.
Are you currently transferring tension across your muscles using your grip when performing big lifts such as presses and back squats?
Are you currently working to improve your grip strength?
Post up in the comment section here below.
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