Wednesday, 30 September 2020 14:22

Deadlifts and grip training and my thoughts on each, and both . . .

So, here we go again on GRIP training!

I saw a post from Charles, a friend of mine (a comment actually in response to my last post on grip training) stating the following.

“Doing a 350 lb deadlift works the grip pretty well”.

Now, I’m well aware of the dude’s inability to do pull-ups, and I’m well aware of his penchant for the bench press, but really, deadlifts?

Didn’t know you did those, Charles.

And if you did them when I met you, then they sure weren’t working your grip like they should have.

But anyway, the deadlift is actually in my opinion (and unlike what some other bodyweight guys will tell ya) a higher “ranked” exercise than many other asinine ones in the gym.

Don’t get me wrong. Certainly not something I’d do regularly, but it has its uses – in part.

It’s certainly a ton better than the idiotic “stack on plates” bench press and the silly hoo haa that goes with. Pushups do a far better job of building the entire upper body than bench pressing, the most functionally USELESS boobybuilder’s favorite exercise ever could.

Pec deck being another worthless invention. The lazy man’s bench I should say. Or perhaps the lazy man’s “puff and buff” excuse.

And that granddaddy of them all, the ape pulldown machine.

Ever seen an ape sit on a pull-down machine? Gorillas, primates, apes, chimps (chimps can kill adult CROCS with their bare hands!) and so forth, those primates with you know, REAL grip strength?

Didn’t think so my friend.

But I see human versions of these monkeys seated on them at the gym all the time, frantically trying to outdo other “males” (I use that term sparingly) while “yanking” (please, do NOT go there, hehe) down as much as they can – and it’s usually these guys that a) rail the most against pull-ups, b) have lard asses, and c) are unable to do a single pull-up or handstand pushup, or even try.

Pathetic. I’d say the lat pulldown scores over the bench press in that regard . . .

. . . but deadlifts?

They’re not that bad, I suppose. You DO build some functional strength from it, but compared to other things?

Compared to bodyweight stuff like pull-ups done right – such as the U.S. Marines do regularly, or monkey bar work (think primate style)?

Deadlifts no matter how “heavy” don’t begin to hold a candle my friend.

Not to mention Charles was probably referring to (his fave) a “one time lift”

You yank the weight up once, set another “record” in the books, and you’re done.


Which does zip all for fat loss, for one, but more importantly, while that sort of “heavy singles” method may be useful for training other parts of the body occasionally (but not really – ask any wrestling coach and he’llt ell you the following that a) conditioning is where matches are WON and b) it ain’t “one time strength” – it’s about being able to use that strength REPETITIVELY when it COUNTS in the RING), it is next to worthless for grip training.


Well, the grip consists of tiny muscles which respond best to VOLUME my friend.

High volume pull-ups. High Volume fingertip work. High volume gripping. Arm wrestling. Maybe real wrestling. And so forth!

That’s just how the muscles are “structured” in our body.

One time lifts may be great for overall body strength once in a while, but I do believe they’re way, way overrated and NOT used correctly (now yes, if done right ALONG WITH OTHER THINGS, they CAN be very potent).

But if you really have to use something other than your bodyweight for grip training?

Well, I’d say use sandbags.

Or kettlebells.

Or lug half filled beer barrels back and forth across your house, or dungeon, or basement.

OR do rope and chain work.

There are many alternatives, and ALL BETTER Than adopting the silly deadlift grip and tugging a barbell. I mean, face it my friends – how often do ANY of use that sort of grip in real life?


I thought so!

And I’ll close out by saying this. I don’t care how much you can lift or push parallel to your chest my friend.

IT’s about how much you can press OVERHEAD.

Now THAT is a functional exercise, the overhead press.

And it’s about if you can pull yourself up from a dead hang and do so repeatedly, not while sitting on a lat pulldown machine.

And the feeling you get from doing these - - let me just say OH BOY.

I don’t think you could ever get them from doing deadlifts or weightlifting of any nature. Maybe a nasty lower back injury as deadlifts are well known for (not to mention shoulder impingement in certain cases) – certainly not something I’d want to go for!

And that’s that for my opinion and indeed FACTS on that. Back soon!


Rahul Mookerjee

PS – Don’t believe me? Think Im full of it? I understand. How dare I, eh. Cocky prick eh? Yeah, yeah. yeah! But before you diss me more (or perhaps after ;)), take a look at what a “convert” from the boobybuilding gang told me (straight from the horse’s mouth, this!) right HERE on the Shoulders like Boulders page . . .