/ Finger & Wrist Strength - Minimal/no equipment?
I'm a strong believer in the benefits of calisthenic training (only using ones own body weight to build strength and fitness i.e pushups, pull ups, squats etc) so ideally im looking to do the same for my fingers.
I've done abit of research into this but it's often hard to find any definitive exrcises online as the finger and wrist strength doesn't really come into mind for a great deal of other sports bar climbing. (so it seems anyway)
I have tried using those grip strengtheners where its like two handles with a thin coiled metal bar between them so as you squeeze them together they spring back out but the pump i experience from this doesn't feel like the kind of pump i experience climbing so i'm not sure if it's targetting the right muscles/tendons or not.
If anybody knows some home exercises that they have found to work please leave a comment with what they are or explaining how to do them, it would be very much appreciated.
Seriously, strengthening body parts in isolation wont work.
As for wrists, press-ups, crawling and handstand-pushups.
And what did you mean by 'crawling' if you don't mind me asking, i'm already doing things like the press ups and hand stand press ups but i cant say i've heard of crawling?
If you don't have access to a climbing wall (or fingerboard / door ledge for deadhangs / repeaters):
Put a towel over a pull up bar. Grab towel with both hands and lift yourself off floor. Hold for as long as possible. Repeat.
Good Judo practitioners can do around 4-5 minutes per set. If you can do longer than a minute you'll be doing OK.
Buy a broadsheet newspaper. Open it up. Pick up a sheet and screw it one handed into a tight ball. Repeat until the whole paper is gone.
There's loads of progressions you can do on the exercises you've already mentioned and you are only really limited by your imagination. If you've got a chin up bar you can train particularly effectively. Here's some suggestions.
Push ups on fingertips. Progress to remove little fingers, then third finger and so on if possible. Progress to one armed if possible. Used to do this one in karate years ago.
Push ups on back of hand to strengthen wrists.
One armed Hindu push ups
Chinups/pull ups with a towel wrapped around to make thicker grip.
Lock off chin up/pull up at top and try and grab door frame above.
Use slings to do pullups on. Chris Sharma does a lot of this.
Wring out a wet towel.
Just a few suggestions mate.
Not sufficient in itself for climbing strength. To train power endurance try it while looking at a picture of a senior Tory politician. You'll need really strong wrists and fingers for success under those conditions.
Genius. Will try it tonight and report back.
What training benefit does this give? I'm genuinely curious, because I'm reading it and my first impression is that it would do nothing to improve my climbing and would massively increase my risk of finger injury?
Mr Mcleod did quite well with just a campus rung
> What training benefit does this give? I'm genuinely curious, because I'm reading it and my first impression is that it would do nothing to improve my climbing and would massively increase my risk of finger injury?
It helps you cheat at campusing :-)
As in the transition from pull to push with the lower arm? Or are you just joking?
Yes, pushing on the lower arm helps with locking the upper arm before reaching through.
I had considered doing fingertip push-ups to help but it really defeats the point, assuming the point is to get better at climbing.
I've been swinging a kettle-bell around for shits and gigs and my fingers have doubled in size/strength. Can't keep the girlfriend away.
Yes, I've definitely noticed that I'm stronger camp using when my dominant left arm is on the lower rung because it generates the "flick" far better than my right arm, so I can hit higher top rungs with my left hand than with my right.
I just wasn't sure (the smiley threw me) whether you were suggesting that fingertip pullups helped with generating that flick.
It strengthens and conditions the hands, which while not sports specific to climbing will help with jamming etc. I'm not saying its a magical exercise to replace hangs, campusing, finger board etc but the OP said he had no equipment. I've never injured myself doing this but i have been doing them since i was 6! Maybe not so good advice in hindsight.
leg raises / L-hang chinups on a chinup bar are good
do the chinups with palms away from you. And wide grip ones pulling the bar behind your head is good.
I'd have to disagree with you on that one. Only from personal experience as i popped a muscle in my lat doing that very exercise and it wasn't pleasant. Took ages to heal.
I'm assuming you have no access to modern bouldering, which would do everything you want. Do you have brick edges you can use ? That's what a lot of people used before climbing walls and other artificial means had.
Canal brickwork could be worth checking out if you have any nearby.
Good luck !
Or an old railway bridge!
If you fill a large (2 litre +) bottle with water and hold this in a pinch grip in one hand, with your knuckles parallel with the ceiling, flex the wrist to 90 degrees and lower again, repeating till failure. If you find it too easy or that it's taking too long, fill the bottle/a similar container with something heavier.
Also, get a stick, a brick and some string, tie the string around the brick and the rope so the brick hangs from the stick when you hold it in both hands out front, wind the stick round with your fingers so the brick rises, and unwind again.
Both of these exercises really help with wrist stabilisation, and doing reps of them will affect how quickly you're forearms recover from being pumped.
Also, in day to day life, try using your fingers to carry things, so that your forearm muscles are engaged. even when carrying things like shopping bags, people usually let them hang from the fingers, using the skeleton rather than forearm muscles. This way you can incorporate teeny weeny bits of finger training into your day to day life. Also it's interesting to see when someone starts moving furniture around open handed...
Hope these help!
> If you fill a large (2 litre +) bottle with water and hold this in a pinch grip in one hand, with your knuckles parallel with the ceiling, flex the wrist to 90 degrees and lower again, repeating till failure. If you find it too easy or that it's taking too long, fill the bottle/a similar container with something heavier.
> Also, get a stick, a brick and some string, tie the string around the brick and the rope so the brick hangs from the stick when you hold it in both hands out front, wind the stick round with your fingers so the brick rises, and unwind again.
Both those things are good ways to encourage kids to finger strength train as well (when they want to fingerboard or campus but don't have fully grown fngers yet), or for grown ups to rehabilitate/build up to using a fingerboard.
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