My gym recently got a new fat bar and I am looking for everyone's thoughts on where/how to incorporate into my routine to help my grip/forearm strength. Currently my grip is my limiting factor in my deadlift at 255 X 5 and also 275 X 1 (weak i know).
Last session I added static holds to the end of my workout for the first time. I held onto my last rep of my deadlift (235 X 5) for as long as I could and also then did static holds of 225 and 275 at the end of my routine. I will continue to deadlift without straps and work on improving the static holds.
What are your guys thoughts? What exercises should I use the fat bar for (thinking bench and deadlift)? Should I add in additional sets at the end of my normal routine with the fat bar, or alternate days where some I use the fat bar and some the standard?
Bench: 175 x 5
Squat: 225 x 5
Deadlift: 255 x 5
Current Routine - Hitting the gym about 4 times a week depending on work going through the 3 days below.
Front Squat / Leg Curls (Alternate)
Incline DB Bench
Standing Overhead Press
Close Grip Bench / Tricep Push Down (Alternate)
Rear Delt Flies
Seated Pulley Rows
Thanks in advance.
I don't have any experience using the fat bar for deadlifting or benching (yet to try it out), but I really like using it for overhead pressing (military, push-press, whatever variation you like). I find that it takes a bit of stress off the shoulder joint and elbows, and puts my wrists in a better position.
As far as when to incorporate it, I would say whenever you feel like it, but if you want to plan things out a little more, I would stick with the regular bar until your bench/OH press stalls, then swap the regular bar out for the fat bar for a few weeks. I also wouldn't use it on more than one lift at a time (ex: if you're fat bar benching, use a regular bar for OH presses, and vice versa), but that's just me. Give it a shot and see how it goes!
As far as grip strength, I hear you there. Static holds are definitely a good idea, and any accessory work with fat grips or the fat bar will very likely help as well. Someone else might be able to help you more here, I'm a terrible slacker when it comes to grip work!
Age: 20 / Height: 6' 1" / Weight: 200lbs / Squat: 315lbs / Deadlift: 325lbs / Bench: 225lbs
Hangar 18 - Journal
To improve grip strength there are a few things that you can do with the Fat Bar:
- Axle Deadlifts (Mixed Grip or Double-Overhand)
- Axle Power Cleans
- Axle Rows
- Axle Upright Rows
- Axle Hangs (place the bar on top of a power rack and hang for time)
When you do the rowing or deadlifting holding each rep at the top for a couple of seconds will boost your grip strength.
**Also - If your bar does not have knurling/marking you may want to throw a piece of athletic tape around the bar roughly 8-10# in from the collars just to have a point of reference so that you are grabbing the bar evenly.