Straps vs Grips – Which is Best?
by Christian Duque
Each lifter’s grip is key. Like muscles & strength, a solid grip comes with extensive handling of weights & with calculated forearm development. Our digits, or fingers, are also employed. In fact, veteran powerlifters develop calluses that are invaluable in performing massive deadlifts. The ability of being able to hold a bar during a challenging lift is a huge part of the skill that a seasoned athlete develops over time. Finally there’s a marked mind-body connection that ensues. Control becomes the ultimate element of a lift, guaranteeing that full range of motion will be achieved, as well as proper form during the positive & negative parts of the motion.
Grips, on the other hand, remove the emphasis on grip, giving the lifter less control but the sense of “lifting” more weight. The traditional variants are made of cloth, with some exotics types made off futuristic foams. The lifter generally creates a loop which he/she puts the wrist through, & then tightens to preference. Next, the lifter wraps him/herself to a bar (typically for pulling motions [e.g. deadlifts or shrugs]); the “lift” then ensues. Using accessories will allow lifters to lift heavier, but it does nothing for developing grip. In fact, using these accessories could even potentially ramp up the injury factor.
The bottom line is that impressive personal records come with time. Lifting is both an art & a sport; it takes time to hone in on one’s skills & develop key strength elements that are employed during each workout. Whenever accessories start to replace the role of the human body, limitations set in. Remember, you always want to be in a position to continue improving yourself. Grips are not the way to go as far I’m concerned