“When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on.”
– American Proverb
In Spartan Races you need to be able to hang from your hands when you do the rope climb, monkey bars and multi-rig, not to mention all the times you have to pull yourself over a wall. And let’s not forget the grip strength necessary to tackle Spartan pancakes, bucket carries and atlas stones. Basically, it’s safe to say you need grip strength for most obstacles. But no matter how strong your arms might be, you will find yourself doing 30 burpees if you don’t develop a powerful grip.
2 Ways to Build Grip Strength
This week, when in doubt, hang in there.
Over the course of the coming days, we will refine your grip in two ways.
- We hold ourselves off the ground with our hands only.
- We carry and hold sandbags with only our fingers.
Related: How to Improve Your Grip Strength
Monday WOD – Dead Hang Time
Today we aim for 5-10 minutes cumulative time in a dead hang. This means you try to accumulate a total of five minutes hanging by your hands. This isn’t rocket science. It’s just essential. In fact, you can do this workout every day this week. When you just hold your bodyweight with your hands, this is called a “dead hang”.
Ways to do this:
- Hanging from pull-up bar
- Hanging from a towel thrown over pull up bar
- Hanging on a rope
- Hanging on a ledge from finger-tips
Here’s how you can break this workout down.
Dead-Hang Grip Strength Workout: Version 1
3 x 20 seconds dead hang
- 4 x 45 seconds dead hang
- 1 x 1 minute dead hang
Related: A Guide to Grip Strength Workouts
Dead-Hang Grip Strength Workout: Version 2
Another way to do this workout is to hang out multiple times a day. This is great if you can situate a pull-up bar somewhere you pass many times a day. For example, hang a pull-up bar in a doorway you walk through often. Each time you pass through, reach up and pull your feet off the ground for 30 seconds to 1 minute each time.
Beginners: Aim for up to 5 minutes with both hands
Advanced: Aim for 10 minutes doing alternating hands.