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Hook grip and normal grip

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  • Hook grip and normal grip

    Hey good doctors, my deadlift is going up (today I did 355 for a single @ 8) but I'm having a problem.

    I did 355 with hook grip, and then when I did 315 and 285 for back offs, conventional grip was very difficult to hold on to.

    I read "The Grip Problem" when I hit 315 and started having this problem.

    Basically next week I'm going to try 365 for my deadlift, and I don't think my strength in hams or back is a problem, problem is how much barbell I can grip.

    I can see my grip holding me back from being able to do my backoffs at around 285 to 295 lbs, much less 315 if I wanted to do a heavy set there.

    a) hooking my heavy single is working great
    b) my conventional grip is struggling above like 275
    c) sets with hook grip hurt like hell

    Advice?

  • #2
    Great to hear of the DL progress! And yes, this is common, and you have a few options-
    1. hook grip all of your working sets, and with time you will get used to it
    2. use mixed grip if you don't want to hook grip
    3. Use straps for back off work, but since you also want to compete, I would not suggest you do this at this time with your comp lifts.

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    • #3
      Thank you so much Leah!

      Follow up: what about taping the thumbs? Is that legal is USAPL or USSF? Training effects of thumb taping?

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      • #4
        Some people really like taping the thumbs, and when I used hook grip, I did. It was just fine in training, and you can use it in a small amount for the USAPL- the rules state two layers are allowed. I am not sure of the current USSF rules on that, but I imagine it is allowed. I would read their current rules before your meet however.

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        • #5
          I find it helpful to flex the thumb while taping.
          I use two turns, and i'll flex it once on each turn, when i'm passing the tape under the thumb.
          This helps allow the thumb to be able to get into position when you grip.
          In training, i use two overlapping widths of tape to cover the whole thumb, since i'll hook all worksets, and if i don't pre flex the thumb to shape, it makes gripping really difficult.
          In a meet (USAPL) i use one width of tape (still two turns, as per the rule), from the base and over the crease of the middle joint.
          I find that crease to be the trouble spot.
          This leaves the thumb more flexible, and i like the more positive feel of half untaped for those three pulls.
          Also, an overlap would constitute four turns anyway.
          I'll use chalk on my near max singles.

          I'm super careful to keep all my calluses sanded down to a minimum, and i don't even want to have any on my thumbs.

          The tips have a very small degree of toughening, but nothing that is going to split.

          Oh, i also retape for each attempt in a meet.
          Don't want the tape stretching and tearing on subsequent pulls.

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