Thursday 7 June 2012

A Strong Handshake?

So, I had the pleasure of working on a Cruise Liner the past few days. It was a 5* ship and my job enabled me to mix with the rich and famous as there were a few aboard. One guy I met was William Aames (Pictured above). Although I was not aware of his history, he is quite famous in the US, and is now a Cruise Director.

He introduced himself and gave me the firmest handshake I have probably ever received, surprising coming from a man of such a small stature. It intrigued me and when I bumped into him later I had to ask him what that was all about. Willie admitted to trying and front me out. Fair enough, I thought, I was in uniform. He asked me if I heard his knuckle pop, I told him that was what you get for trying to front me out.

So what makes a firm handshake? - A strong grip and strong hands.

Hand strength is an unappreciated facet of the strength athlete. For a big deadlift you'll need strong hands to grip and rip the bar. In fact, any large lift or carry will require good hand strength. Posterior chain strength is all well and good but your hands will have to handle the loads.

Ross Enamait wrote this great article on functional hand strength development.

John Wood runs which is a great site for grip and hand strength ideas.

Personally, I have a gripper, deadlift heavy, use a sandbag and rope climb to keep my grip strong. You'll never know when you'll have to use your grip strength functionally. Climbing, lifting, throttling, opening jam, ripping up bills and wrestling burglars are good reasons to train it.

You may also meet a celebrity who tries intimidating you, who knows?

Train hard, Charlie.

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