You've probably already researched this matter and tried relying on more aggressive knurling on your barbell or dumbells. You may have even tried using chalk or liquid chalk. Try using some gloves to improve your grip during deadlifts. And yet, here you are, still wondering how to improve grip strength for deadlift.
There's a reason for that. Sometimes, you have to physically improve the grip of your hand. And until you do that, no outside help will do the trick. Then can boost your grip, but not replace what you are currently lacking.
In this article, you'll learn all there is to know about improving your deadlift grip and achieving your goal realistically and effectively.
Let's not beat around the bush for too long and jump straight to the point!
The question ‘How to improve grip strength for deadlift‘ can be summarized to involve regular targeted exercises such as farmer's walks, plate pinches, and static holds. Incorporate grip-enhancing tools like fat grips or grip strengtheners into your routine. Limiting lifting straps can force your grip to work harder and adapt, further boosting its strength.
What Types of Grips Are There in the Deadlift?
In the realm of deadlifting, weightlifters mainly use three types of grips: the double overhand grip, the mixed grip, and the hook grip.
Double Overhand Grip
This is the most common and straightforward grip where both palms face the lifter. It's a great starting point for beginners as it evenly distributes the load across both arms. If you've ever done a deadlift or have seen anyone perform one - this is the grip that was most likely used.
One palm faces the lifter (supine), and the other faces away (prone). This grip provides a better hold on the barbell, reducing the chance of the bar rolling out of your hands. However, it could lead to imbalances over time due to the asymmetrical nature of the grip. You'll constantly have to switch your supine and prone hands to avoid the imbalance that may occur if ignored.
This advanced grip technique traps the thumb between the bar and the first two fingers. It's notoriously uncomfortable but offers a secure grip, making it a favorite among Olympic and powerlifters. This grip helps mitigate the risk of imbalances associated with the mixed grip at the cost of comfort. You'll have to decide how much you prefer security over convenience while doing deadlifting.
Each grip has advantages and challenges, so choosing the one that best suits your lifting style, goals, comfort level, and safety is crucial. Also, if you are unfamiliar with any of these or do not use them regularly, consider or start using different grips for your deadlift session. Not just to spice things up, but to see if any of these better suit your body and form.
Why Is Strong Grip Important in Deadlift?
Stability And Control
Increased Lifting Capacity
Carryover to Other Exercises
How to Improve Your Grip in the Deadlift?
Practice Grip-Specific Exercises
Use Grip Strengthening Tools
Avoid Using Straps
Chalk Your Hands
Use a Mixed Grip
Train Your Forearms
Work on Your Technique
Incorporate Dead Hangs
Consistency is Key
Which Exercises for Grip Strength Should I Use?
Plate Pinches / Disk Holders
Towel or Fat Gripz
Should I Use Lifting Straps When Deadlifting
About the Program
Our Deadlift 2.0 program is a 12-week strength plan designed to boost your Deadlift PR.
The program follows a schedule of THREE 60-90 minutes training sessions per week. The training is scheduled for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, but you can adjust the days to fit your weekly routine, as long as you follow the pattern of one training day followed by one cooldown day, with two days of rest after every third session.
The training is structured into 3 main blocks, with each block lasting for 4 weeks:
Who Is the Program For?
The plan is fit for both male and female athletes and is especially good for Powerlifters and Olympic lifters, but also for fans of deadlifting and strength training. All training requires access to basic equipment.
- Split into 3 block of 4 weeks (12 weeks total)
- 40 unique exercises, with video tutorials
- Pre and post-workout stretch and special warmups
- Mobile friendly PDF version
- LIFETIME access
Why Is My Deadlift Grip Weak?
There are a number of causes that might lead to a weak deadlift grip. Lack of specific training to increase grip strength is a frequent contributing factor. The muscles in your hands and forearms need to be particularly strong for deadlifting, and they may not get that kind of workout anywhere else. Your grip strength for deadlift may not improve as intended if you rely too much on lifting straps. For example, male lifters have naturally stronger grip strength than their female counterparts.
Muscle weakness and cramping, brought on by nutritional deficits or dehydration, may also reduce grip strength. It's also possible that you only fully engage your grip if you practice the correct deadlift technique.
Keep going if your gains in grip strength appear gradual; it takes time and continuous training to achieve results. Stay hydrated, eat healthily, and use the correct technique while deadlifting and doing workouts designed to improve your grip.
Also, as mentioned in one of the previous headings, if you pit an equipped lifter (wrist wraps, belts, knee wraps, squat suits, bench shirts, and/or deadlift suits) versus a raw lifter that doesn't rely on equipment support over time, there will be a shown gap between the two in grip strength that favors the unequipped lifter. As time progresses, the gap will only increase in favor of the raw lifter.
Do You Need Grip Strength for Deadlift?
Yes, grip strength is crucial for deadlifting. When you deadlift, your hands are the primary connection between your body and the barbell. A firm grip ensures you can securely hold heavy weights throughout the lift.
With sufficient grip strength, the bar might stay on our hands, limiting the weight you can lift and potentially leading to injury. Moreover, a strong grip contributes to better overall lifting form, stability, and control, which are critical for effective and safe deadlifting.
If Grip Strength Is Important for Deadlift, Why Not Simply Use Deadlift Straps All the Time?
While straps can assist in holding heavier weights during a deadlift and reduce the grip strength required, relying on them only sometimes isn't ideal for a few reasons.
Firstly, over-reliance on straps can limit the development of your natural grip strength, resulting in you losing grip on deadlift. Secondly, straps can sometimes create a false sense of security, leading to lifting heavier weights than you can safely manage without them. Lastly, they're not allowed in most powerlifting competitions. Therefore, it's best to use straps sparingly and focus on how to increase grip strength for deadlift naturally.
Will Chalk Increase My Grip?
Yes, chalk can provide an obvious improvement to your grip during deadlifts, which is also scientifically proven. It absorbs sweat and reduces the slipperiness between your hands and the barbell. This lets you maintain a firmer grip and lift heavier weights more securely. Just apply it moderately, as too much can create a layer of dust that can make the bar more slippery.
Is a 500 lb deadlift good? At the end of the day, hitting that 500 lb mark deadlift is a challenging yet achievable feat. It requires understanding proper technique, consistent and strategic training, adequate rest, and a balanced diet. While pushing your boundaries, remember to be mindful of potential risks while pushing your limits and ensure you're lifting safely. Yes, raising the equivalent of a giant vending machine is tough, but with dedication and innovative training, you could be well on your way to that 500 lb milestone.
Educate yourself, get the proper knowledge and mindset, and embark on your journey to reach this epic goal and become renowned among your friends. Keep lifting, stay safe, and good luck!
Can you lift 500 lb or more? Please, do share your record in the comment section below. Also, if you have any tips that proved crucial for your success, share them so that more people can reach this impressive feat. Also, if you have any further or specific questions regarding the 500 pound deadlift – be sure to reach out!
- Effect of Magnesium Carbonate Use on Repeated Open-Handed and Pinch Grip Weight-Assisted Pull-Ups // NCBI: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5841679
- RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN GRIP STRENGTH TESTS IN MALE STRENGTH // NCBI: https://commons.nmu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1337&context=isbs
- Hand-Grip Strength as a Predictor of Muscular Strength and Endurance // Journals: https://journals.lww.com/nsca-jscr/Abstract/2011/03001/Hand_Grip_Strength_as_a_Predictor_of_Muscular.156.aspx
- The Deadlift and Its Application to Overall Performance // NSCA: https://www.nsca.com/education/articles/tsac-report/the-deadlift-and-its-application-to-overall-performance/
- Deadlift Strength Standards for Men and Women (kg) // Strengthlog: https://www.strengthlog.com/deadlift-strength-standards-kg/
- Deadlift Grip Guide: How Hand Placement Changes the Exercise // Stack: https://www.stack.com/a/deadlift-grip/
Sergii is a professional weightlifter and National team member in the past. Competed in 94 kg w/c, won multiple medals on national competitions.
Nowadays Sergii is responsible for designing training programs, writing blog articles, doing live commentary of international weightlifting competitions, running different sport & fitness educational seminars, including Olympic weightlifting together with Oleksiy Torokhtiy all around the globe.