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Tips For NeurogripsTM

 Here are some things to keep in mind when using NeurogripsTM.

1)

NeurogripsTM are not used alone like the traditional hand grip trainers, but are used with other pieces of fitness equipment, both standard and non-standard that can be gripped with your bare hands.  These include barbells, dumbells, cable attachments, therapy tubing, kettlebells, Indian Clubs, Persian Mil, sledgehammers, ropes, suspension trainers, sleds, etc.... 

2)

Once you put on the NeurogripsTM, the finger webbing is used simply to keep the grips attached to your hands in a proper position for comfort and maximum hand coverage, as well as for the convenience of decreasing the chance of losing them while moving from one exercise to the next during your training session.  As everyone's hand may be a different size, the NeurogripsTM only need to span the gripping area between the hand and the handle that you are attempting to grip in order to increase the thickness/diameter by approximately 1 inch.   







3)

 

Straight out of the packaging, NeurogripsTM may feel slightly stiff.  But as was stated above, they are not meant to be used alone like hand grippers.  You do not put them on and try to squeeze them in order to train your grip.  You put them on, then place your hands with the NeurogripsTM onto the handle of the fitness device that you are going to lift.  By doing this, NeurogripsTM will easily wrap around the handle, and you must "CRUSH" the NeurogripsTM on the handle to truly feel the grip benefits.  This is true functional grip training. 


4)

No open hand or false grip if you want to maximize your grip.   You will still be challenged with your grip, but you want to include your thumbs.


 

 For the full benefit, make sure you include your thumbs when gripping the device

  

Because NeurogripsTM are compressible, it allows you to adjust your grip throughout each repetition, particularly during explosive exercises like the kettlebell Snatch so that you can control the speed of the kettlebell as it moves around your wrist.  Just like bare hand training, once you place your hand on the handle, you may want to make adjustments to your hand until you feel comfortable enough to make the lift.  When using NeurogripsTM, you may want to make the same minor adjustments to the NeurogripsTM on your hands prior to crushing the handle and making the lift.  The more you train with the NeurogripsTM, the more they will contour to your hand and the less adjustments you will feel the need to make during your training.  They will become an extension of your hand. 

You can see in the following pictures, that although there is a specific "thumb" region of the NeurogripsTM, when gripping a particular device, your hand/thumbs may not exactly match up with that area of the NeurogripsTM.  This does not matter, as the NeurogripsTM encompass the entire handle of the device.  No matter where your thumb lies, you will be compressing a larger diameter/thickness handle. 

 

In the picture below, I exaggerate the position of my thumb to be completely off the "thumb section" of the NeurogripsTM.  But because the NeurogripsTM encompass the handle, I still must use my thumb to compress the larger diameter.  The grip challenge created by NeurogripsTM remains, no matter where the thumb is (unless you use a false or open hand grip) 

 

 Like any other new training technique, you may initially want to slowly add NeurogripsTM into your program.  As is with anything, if you are not used to doing something, and you all of a sudden do it repetitively, you may feel sore.  I advise trying one set with NeurogripsTM and the next without them so that you can feel the difference.  You will notice that the set without NeurogripsTM is much easier than when using NeurogripsTM, and in time what was once a challenge to lift bare-handed, will seem much  easier. 


The Kettlebell Suitcase Deadlift With NeurogripsTM

The Kettlebell used in this example has a handle that is approximately 1.25" to 1.5" in diameter.  The length of the handle is about 4.5" with curved corners ("Horns") which makes it difficult for other grip enhancing devices to fit over.  The NeurogripsTM easily slide on your hand, adding 1" diameter to the Kettlebell handle, making it between 2.25" and 2.5" in diameter.  This challenges your grip and helps strengthen your hand, wrist, forearm as well as your shoulder and trunk musculature. 

 Neurogrips

Keep your feet about hip width apart

Neurogrips Kettlebell Suitcase Deadlift

Squat down 'symmetrically', grip the kettlebell handle

Neurogrips Kettlebell

Return to the standing position gripping the kettlebell

 

Things to remember:

1) When lowering your body to grab the kettlebell, perform the hip hinge technique, flexing at your hips and not your lower back -- Some verbal cues: "Squat back, not down - push your butt back as if reaching back for a chair"

2) As you lower yourself, you will have the tendency to sidebend toward the kettlebell. Don't do this.  This exercise is not only working your legs and grip, it is also a trunk stabilizer.  If you maintain the initial spinal alignment and do not allow yourself to sidebend or rotate/twist towards the weight, you are using your trunk musculature (laterally the Quadratus Lumborum) as well as obliques, and transversus abdominals to stabilize your spine and trunk.  The fact that you are not compensating by sidebending towards the kettlebell also helps you to squat deeper, assisting you in gaining more functional range of motion/flexibility.

3) Upon rising to upright standing position, focus on maintaining symmetric shoulder height, again avoiding sidebending or rotating.  If you are holding the kettlebell in the right hand, your left lateral trunk muscles are working to stop you from sidebending to the right ("Don't give in to the weight").  

4) As you ascend to the starting point, make sure you do so while firing your glutes.  Try to spread the floor with your feet.  At the very top, 'lock out' by clenching your butt. 

5) Keep your shoulder blades retracted throughout. No forward rounded shoulders

 

The kettlebell in this technique is providing a vertical force to your hand, wrist, forearm, etc... There is no directional bias here towards wrist flexion, extension, radial deviation, ulnar deviation, pronation or supination.  Your wrist remains in neutral and your hand is working hard to grip the kettlebell, preventing it from falling vertically from your hand.  Doing this bare handed is a challenge in itself.  Using NeurogripsTM makes it even more difficult.  

 

The Kettlebell Single Leg Deadlift With NeurogripsTM
The Single Leg Kettlebell Deadlift is great for balance as well as gluteal recruitment, trunk stabilization, scapula stability, grip and mental focus.

 Single Leg Kettlebell Deadlift with Neurogrips

Start with the kettlebell on the inside border of your left foot.  Kick your right foot/leg straight back behind you keeping the leg as straight as possible.  As you 'reach' your right foot back, you are hinging your trunk forward over the left hip.  Tighten the glutes on the right side as your upper body reaches its lowest forward position (just as your hand reaches the kettlebell handle).  Your right foot/ankle should be in line with your right hip and right shoulder.

 Remember:

1) Keep your hips/pelvis bones and shoulders parallel/squared off to floor.  Do not twist/rotate your trunk as you descend or ascend.  One hip or shoulder should not be higher than the other

2) You may slightly bend the stance leg knee (in this example, the left knee)

3) Do not reach for the kettlebell with your right arm by protracting your shoulder blade.  Keep your shoulder blades retracted, shoulders parallel to the ground and grip the kettlebell handle only when your hand reaches it (arms length away).  In otherwords, don't perform the deadlift technique for a very minimal depth and then stretch down with your arm to grip the  kettlebell handle in order to minimize the deadlift motion.   Do not lose your scapula stability. 
Single Leg Kettlebell Deadlift with Neurogrips

Tighten the glutes on the stance side (left leg) to assist your return to upright standing.  Lock out in the upright position by clenching your glutes

Switch to standing on the right leg and reaching for the kettlebell with the left hand.

 

Using NeurogripsTM increases the grip demand as well as the mental concentration needed to perform this activity.  Do not fall into the habit of quickly dropping down, grabbing the kettlebell and standing up.  For full benefit, you must raise the free leg back in a straight line as if reaching the wall behind you.  Upon reaching the kettlebell with your hand, ensure that your raised leg remains straight and in line with your hip, trunk and shoulder.  Squeeze the kettlebell handle tightly with the NeurogripsTM.  Upon arising, contract the stance side's glutes and make sure to maintain the scapula retraction.  Avoid any type of trunk rotation throughout. 

 

The kettlebell in this technique is again providing a vertical force to your hand, wrist, forearm, and shoulder.   There is no directional bias here towards wrist flexion, extension, radial deviation, ulnar deviation, pronation or supination.  Your wrist remains in neutral and your hand is working hard to grip the kettlebell, preventing it from falling vertically from your hand.  Doing this bare handed is a challenge in itself.  Using NeurogripsTM makes it even more difficult.   Although the kettlebell is not providing a directional bias to your hand, wrist and forearm, because it is a unilateral exercise, it is providing a rotational force as well as a lateral force to your trunk.  You must fight these directional forces to your trunk by maintaining proper posture.  Therefore, you are training trunk and scapula stability. 

                 Suitcase Deadlift With NeurogripsTM and Nabard Long Device

The Nabard Long Device used in this example is a device similar to a barbell.  However, the 1 inch diameter handle is offset rather than centralized.   The NeurogripsTM easily slide on your hand, adding 1" diameter to the Nabard Device handle, making it about 2" in diameter.  Combined with the offset handle, the NeurogripsTM challenge your grip and help strengthen your hand, wrist, forearm as well as your shoulder and trunk musculature.   


Set up is the same as the Suitcase Deadlift using the Kettlebell.  Stand with the 'rear' handle just lateral to your foot.  Place the NeurogripTM on the hand that is nearest to the handle that you will be gripping.

Neurogrips Suitcase Deadlift Nabard Long Device

Squat back and down keeping your knees in line with your toes, your weight on your heels, "spreading the floor" with your feet.  Grip the handle of the device closest to your foot.

Neurogrips Suitcase Deadlift Nabard Long Device

Stand up, again "spreading the floor" with your feet.  Try your best to maintain the Nabard device in a straight line, parallel to the floor.  This is where your grip is really challenged.  The length of the Nabard device acts as a long lever.  It is not a high weight, however it is difficult to manage due to the long lever.  This lever is providing a force in the direction of ulnar deviation (the end of the device furthest from you wants to dip down toward the ground.  This direction is toward the pinky or ulnar deviation).  Since your goal is to keep it level, you must fire your radial deviator muscles.  So in this activity, you are working your legs, glutes, and trunk stabilizers as it is unilateral.  Adding weight to one side causes your trunk to laterally flex toward the weight.  Your trunk must fight this and remain stable.  As for your arm, you are not only squeezing the handle using NeurogripsTM (now 2" diameter), you are keeping your wrist in neutral by firing radial deviators to counteract ulnar deviation directional force of the long levered device.  Your shoulders and scapulae do not move, so you are also working scapula and shoulder stabilizers.  A full body activity!!
Neurogrips Suitcase Deadlift with Nabard Long Device

The Suitcase Deadlift Using NeurogripsTM and Directional Force: Ulnar Deviation


The setup for this technique is the same as the previous technique.  You stand with your foot next to the handle of the device.  This time, however, the long end of the device is behind you instead of in front of you.

 

 Squat back and down and grip the handle tightly using the NeurogripsTM. 

 

"Spread the floor" with your feet and stand up tall.  Do not allow the back end of the device to dip down.  Your job is to keep the device parallel to the ground.  The long lever posterior is providing a directional force downward, which places radial deviation on your wrist.  To maintain the neutral wrist position, you must fire your ulnar deviators.  So you are gripping the handle while at the same time performing ulnar deviation in order to maintain neutral wrist position and keep control of the device.  This is the opposite action of the previous post.



The Single Leg Deadlift Using NeurogripsTM and The Nabard Long Device: Radial Deviation

 Place NeurogripsTM on the right hand.  Stand next to the Long Device (Device is closest to your right foot) so that the longer end extends in front of you

Kick your right leg straight behind you, allowing your left knee to slightly bend so that your right hand can reach the handle of the Long Device.  Do not let your hips move out of the parallel position in relation to the floor (Do not let either hip rise or fall).  Contract your right gluteals to maintain full right hip extension.  Squeeze the NeurogripsTM around the device handle tightly.

Squeeze your glutes, press your left foot into the ground and stand up tall, locking your glutes at the top.  Do not allow the long end of the Nabard device to dip down.  With this, the long end is placing downward force on your hand and wrist, in the direction of ulnar deviation.  To maintain neutral wrist position, you must fire your radial deviators as well as maintain a crushing grip on the handle due to the increased diameter from the NeurogripsTM.  This will work your hand, wrist, forearm, elbow, shoulder and trunk musculature.


The Single Leg Deadlift Using NeurogripsTM and The Nabard Device: Ulnar Deviation Bias

Place NeurogripsTM on the right hand.  Stand next to the Long Device (Device is closest to your right foot) so that the longer end extends behind you

Kick your right leg straight behind you, allowing your left knee to slightly bend so that your right hand can reach the handle of the Long Device.  Do not let your hips move out of the parallel position in relation to the floor (Do not let either hip rise or fall).  Contract your right gluteals to maintain full right hip extension.  Squeeze the NeurogripsTM around the device handle tightly.  Maintain Scapula Retraction (Do not let your shoulder blade protract toward the device to assist your reach - Maintain Scapula Stability)

Squeeze your glutes, press your left foot into the ground and stand up tall, locking your glutes at the top.  Do not allow the long end (which is now behind you) of the Nabard device to dip down.  With this, the long end is placing downward force on your hand and wrist, in the direction of radial deviation.  To maintain neutral wrist position, you must fire your ulnar deviators as well as maintain a crushing grip on the handle due to the increased diameter from the NeurogripsTM.  This will work your hand, wrist, forearm, elbow, shoulder and trunk musculature.  To see how much of a challenge Neurogrips provide, try one set with and the next set without the NeurogripsTM on.


Bottoms Up Kettlebell Bicep Curls Using Neurogrips

To properly perform the bicep curl, you must initiate the movement by retracting your scapulae so that your shoulders are in correct alignment.  If using a dumbbell, grip the handle tightly and flex your elbow.  Maintaining your shoulders/scapulae in proper position while performing the bicep curl helps train scapula stabilizers (isometrically), which will act as the foundation for the upper extremity movement.  With a dumbbell, the weight is distributed evenly in your hand.  However, if using a kettlebell in the bottoms up position, the weight of the bell is offset in relation to the handle that you are gripping, so the lever you are attempting to move is longer and therefore more difficult to lift.  Because of the awkward weight distribution and shape of the kettlebell, when performing the Bottoms Up Kettlebell Curl, it is much more demanding on your hand grip and forearm strength as you are trying to curl the weight, while at the same time preventing the kettlebell from moving your wrist into flexion, extension, radial/ulnar deviation, pronation or supination.   You are constantly making adjustments to your grip to control the movement of the Kettlebell.  To make it even more challenging, try this same exercise with Neurogrips.  






 In the images above, you can see how Neurogrips add thickness/diameter to the kettlebell handle.  In the picture on the left, the thumb overlaps the index finger.  In picture on the right, the thumb does not come close to the index finger.  The goal here is to control the kettlebell by "crushing" the Neurogrips around the handle.

Below is the Kettlebell Bottoms Up Curl with Neurogrips.  To initiate the curl, the shoulders/scapulae must be "set" isometrically.  Then as you curl the kettlebell, you must avoid trunk sidebending towards the side of the kettlebell as well as losing control of the "set" scapulae.  Do not let your shoulders drop or protract (roll forward).

                                     

  

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