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GRIP STRENGTH TESTING

In our recovery program we recommend testing your grip strength as a measure of readiness. Since you want to test your readiness before your workouts and trainings the test shouldn't make you tired. Grip strength testing is great for that.



EQUIPMENT

For the test you need a simple device that basically just measures how hard you can squeeze your hand.


How does that test your readiness? When you're fatigued or tired you're not as strong because "you can’t use your muscles as well". The advantages of the grip strength test are that it can be daily and without any damage in contrast to let’s say a 1 rep max squat test which would leave you exhausted.


HOW TO DO THE TEST

For the actual test start with your arm overhead and slowly lower it while squeezing your hand as hard as possible.


In order to check how fatigued or in other words how ready you are - It is of course important to have a baseline to see when the values actually change. So you need to test a couple of days before you actually know what “normal” looks like for you. The best would be to test after a couple days of real rest. Then test regularly or daily but at least on days of training and games. Keep track of the values in a table so you can compare them.


IMPORTANT NOTES

Make sure the results are comparable. Always test at the same time of the day, the same hand and in the same way. Two suitable times would be after waking up or right before working out. Don't do "warm up squeezes".


Also keep in mind that after a while you will probably get a little “better” at the test simply because you know how to jump high or squeeze y our hand hard. And if you’re doing strength training your numbers will of course slowly go up as well. However that will not happen in a linear fashion. It’s not really important if your grip strength is down a little bit one day - important is that it shouldn’t be decreasing constantly and never be below your starting point for more then three weeks - that would be a clear signal to immediately reduce some of your load and give your body time to recover and adapt - if you’ve done so in time - after a while your numbers should then be even higher than before.


BONUS

There are a few indications that grip strength might actually be realted to shoulder health. It's not clear if that's because a stronger grip helps with shoulder stabilisation or if higher grip strength is just a sign/effect of someone doing a lot of weight training (mainly pulling stuff - which among other things strengthens the muscles stbailising the shoulder).


Fact is - strength is never a weakness and that also applies to grip strength. If you want to improve your grip strength here are some simple exercises that also have additional benefits.


GRIP STRENGTH TRAINING FOR HANDBALL

Here are some effective exercises to get you started:

  1. Farmer's Walk: Carry heavy objects in each hand while walking to improve overall grip strength and endurance.

  2. Deadlifts: Incorporate deadlifts into your strength training routine to engage your grip while working on your overall strength.


REFERENCES

Horsley, I., Herrington, L., Hoyle, R., Prescott, E., & Bellamy, N. (2016). Do changes in hand grip strength correlate with shoulder rotator cuff function?. Shoulder & elbow, 8(2), 124–129. https://doi.org/10.1177/1758573215626103

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