Fitness Tips

This $9 Tool Strengthens the Most Overlooked Muscles in Your Body

Erin Bunch

Photo: Stocksy / Sean Locke
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You may not think about it all that much—until, say, you try to open a jar of pickles or pasta sauce—but your grip strength can serve as an excellent indication of your overall health. One study found that it can predict cardiovascular fitness and even provide insight into your future mobility. Another study, meanwhile, showed it was actually predictive of mortality. And yet, it’s not something most of us actively train for, even though doing so is both easy and affordable—all you need is a grip strengthener.

Mind Reader Hand/Finger Grip Strengthener

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Grip strengtheners improve your overall grip strength while enhancing the strength of your fingers, thumb, wrist, and forearm, says Dannah Eve, a certified personal trainer and creator of The DE Method.

“Grip strength training plays a vital role in day-to-day life from carrying groceries, working out, or even doing simple household chores,” Eve says. “The math is simple—the stronger the grip, the stronger the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the surrounding area will be, and the less likely you are to suffer an injury.”

Your grip strength is affected by your age, how often you workout your arms, the dominance of your hand (aka if it’s the hand you favor or not), whether or not gripping motions cause you pain, and other variables.

Eve notes that while weight lifters in particular should train their grip strength, doing so can benefit anyone. “Whether you’re a professional athlete, construction worker, doctor, massage or physical therapist, or even a stay-at-home mom… we all have hands and use them every single day,” says Eve. “So why not build their strength and endurance and maximize the quality of our life?”

Grip strength training can also be beneficial for those suffering from arthritis. “Increasing your grip strength is one of the most important things one dealing with arthritis can do to minimize the impact that arthritis has on day-to-day life,” she says.

And perhaps the best thing about grip strengthening exercises is that they can be performed at your desk, or even from the comfort of your couch during your next Netflix bender.

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