I have always made a point to mix things up with my training and try to hit every freaking muscle and from every angle from the big powerful girls that help you not only burn fat but help you function better in life like glutes, back, legs, to the little stabilizer girls that protect your joints from injury and well “stabilize” things that really shouldn’t have too much movement ie. lumbar spine. Some of these are, without tapping in to the geek side of things and given you the full breakdown and jargon, are your rotator cuff muscles (those around your shoulder and shoulder blades) and your lumbar multifidi, had to throw one bit of nerdiness in there or basically one of the deeper muscles of your lower spine. Okay time to get on with it right :p Well here is the thing that I recently noticed, or more or less paid attention to, after my last weekend seminar with Arjarn or Kru (I am not sure now which it is:() Nick Hewiston that involved a lot of clinching and punching, and of course kicking, knees and elbows but they don’t help me with my point here. Aside from working in various planes of motion, changing up my exercises, intensities, sets, rest, reps etcetera etcetera :p Here is a pic because people like pictures more than words don’t they aka picture books, mags and tv?? Yes my form is balls here but it was a speed drill and omg it sucked so good lol
I had an aha moment and realized the importance of mixing up your grip just as frequently and why I, as well as a lot of you, should really start prioritizing this aspect too. Doing this will not only help in better preventing injuries but it is also an aspect that will help you in your sports performance too.
If you look at any REAL science/textbook, document or picture, you will see a body standing in what is called the anatomical position
NO NOT LIKE THIS
Most of the time we seem to be training in a sort of non-anatomically correct position for many muscles or movements or are simply putting a particular joint under a lot of strain by not balancing out the movement “pathway”. Some examples of this are pullups or pull-downs with most always using a pronated grip (your thumbs point towards each other with this grip), barbell or dumbbell presses, again with a pronated grip, barbell or dumbbell bench press/incline press with yup you guessed it, a pronated grip and of course arm curls. How about when you are deadlifting? What kind of grip do you have? Would that by chance be a pronated grip for the most part you are utilizing? Well la di da are you following me? This puts a lot of strain on your body, sets you up for a greater risk of overuse injuries and can actually hinder your muscle building and strength progress. If you are an athlete, consider the way this will translate to sport. You typically would want to strengthen or improve in a similar pattern to your sport and while yes you do want the strength work to compliment the sport training and to improve the athletes weaknesses, I am talking about the core of the work and major movements not the accessory work (and this post has nothing to do with the balancing of antagonist vs agonist muscles or the neural aspect of training) 😉 Changing up your grip can actually increase muscle activity, can help you lift more as you will be in a better more natural overall position, possibly help staleness as you will get to “change up” exercises to prevent boredom, and best of all it will help you to have a balanced physique with less chance of injury! Try mixing up your lifting grips with a supinated grip (thumbs pointing outward, palms up)
Here is a video of part of one of my workouts of me using something called LIQUID GRIP to help me NOT drop the bar on my head :p