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OT -- Couple Hand-Squisher Tips

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-- I've been looking for the hand-squisher exerciser things for a while that have the 4 individual finger buttons ("Gripmaster" or similar brand name), and I finally found them at a local music store. None of the local sporting goods stores carry them anymore, but music stores seem to keep a pretty good stock of them at about $20 apiece. This 4-button design works *way* better than my old-style spring-V hand exercisers, and is much more comfortable to use.

-- Here's an especially good deal that I stumbled across on the Internet at a music supply website. I don't know if the $10 deal is real or not, but that's a good price (unless there's $10 shipping and handling!): Hand Squishers On Sale $10

-- I ended up buying 2 squishers from my local music store, a Light and a Medium. The Medium is about the same as the CRF clutch lever, and the Light is nice if you're using it for a long while (like watching 2 hours of SX on TV).

-- Here's the best trick: Take the squisher with you on your training runs! This is great for two reasons. First, it lets you use it for a long stretch, instead of just a few minutes here and there. Second, it really takes your mind off of the run, and the run is a *lot* less obnoxious. I don't know about you, but when I run, the front part of my mind is thinking about regular stuff, but the back part of my mind keeps whining about how boring and obnoxious the run is. But when you're squishing when you run, it's like it occupies that background part of your brain with thinking about what your hands are doing. Just think of all the miles you've been pounding out without this distraction! :):D :D

So the main tips are to get the squisher from a music store, and to take it with you on your runs. Now we'll see if it gets rid of that dumb claw-hand at the end of the day! :D

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Careful about overworking your forearm or you'll get an adverse reaction. Fighter pilots pump iron to build muscle so they don't blackout so easily in high-G maneuvers. The muscles hold the blood where it is basically.

Same thing can happen to your forearms if your muscle becomes overly developed, you'll have a large amount of blood pool in the lower arm.

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I'd like to add my two cents, for what its worth. Unless your forearms are under developed at the present you'll probably not notice much increase in forearm size. You'd probably also notice improvement for riding by doing something specifically for wrist, and supporting strength. Wrist curls and reverse wrist curls, for supporting strength pick up a bar the size of your throttle (or even a little larger) and simply let it hang. Try to increase the weight as your strength increases. Hate to disagree with Ken on my first post, but a stronger (max strength) muscle will develope less of a pump and last longer than a weaker muscle; as long as load is under 30% of max. Udo Neumann explains this (aerobic restoration and capillarity) in the book Performance Rock Climbing. You might also check www.ironmind.com for tips and tools to increase your overall grip strength. Ed

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