Your forearm muscles allow you to lift things and move efficiently. When these muscles are weak, multitasking can be a challenge and lifting objects can cause injury. Strong forearm muscles will also let you enjoy a better grip and make grabbing things a breeze.
To strengthen these body parts, you can start doing strength training once or two a week for the first two weeks. Slowly increase the frequency and incorporate more movements when you feel that the exercises are becoming too easy for you. Below are forearm exercises that you can follow to strengthen those grip muscles:
5 Forearm Exercises to Strengthen Grip Muscles
1. Static Barbell Hold
Hold a barbell and hoist it up, then slowly bend your arms to form a 90-degree angle. Keep the arms on your sides, and hold the barbell for about two minutes. Make sure to keep your wrists straight and your core muscles engaged throughout the routine. If you cannot hold it for two minutes, then reduce the time to a minute or as long as you can hold (if you are a beginner). You can make this routine more challenging by holding the barbell that is wrapped in a towel. This will improve your pinch strength, which is crucial for people who do contact sports like wrestling.
2. Ball Squeeze Exercise
Hold the ball in your hand and work it up to a vice-like hand grip. Wrap your fingers around the ball, and hold it out in front of you. Squeeze the ball periodically, and do the movements for up to a minute. Raise your hand up above your head as you squeeze the ball and hold the squeeze for another minute. Hold your hand to the side, and repeat the squeezing for one more minute. Repeat the routine on your other hand.
3. Dumbbell Rotation
This exercise will work both your forearm and hands. Simply grab a pair of dumbbells and bring them up to a 90-degree angle. Your arms should be bent in front of you.
Make sure that your elbows are on your side, and keep your shoulders relaxed to prevent injury. Turn the dumbbells away and bring it as far as you can without straining your wrists. Slowly go back to the starting position, and repeat the routine. Another option is to rotate the dumbbells to the opposite direction for added challenge.
4. Push Up
The push-up is a great way to strengthen not only your forearms but also your shoulders and core muscles. Get down on your knees and hands, like the table-top position in yoga. Slowly bring yourself to the plank position, and carefully bend your arms to move your body close to the floor. Push yourself up to go back to the plank position. Keep your body aligned throughout the movement to prevent injury. Do as many repetitions as you can, as long as you do not feel any strain on your joints.
5. Gripper Exercise
Hand grippers are two handles that come with a tension sprint in the middle part. Here are exercises that you can do with them:
- The ascending pyramid – hold the hand gripper in one hand before moving it to the other. Close the first arm and perform two repetitions before passing the gripper onto the other hand and do the same thing.
- Timed grips– Hold it in your hand, and maintain the position for as long as you can. Make sure to note the length of time that you were able to hold it. Repeat the same process on the other hand, and try to hold it for the same amount of time.
- Speed sets – Hold the gripper and close it as frequent as you possibly can for a certain period of time. Repeat the process with your other hand, but make sure to match the initial time recorded. Pay close attention to the amount of pressure that you exert on each hand.
These are some of the best forearm exercises that you can follow to strengthen those grip muscles. You can add the resistance, increase the duration, or do both as you progress. When you are done with these routines, do not forget to do your cool down stretch to relax your muscles for faster recovery. Doing so will help you avoid any injury.
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