If you’re a weightlifter, you’ve probably heard of the term “suicide grip.” It refers to a way of holding the barbell with your palms facing away from your body rather than towards it. This grip is also known as a thumbless grip or a false grip.
While some lifters prefer the suicide grip for specific exercises, it’s important to note that it can be dangerous. Without the support of your thumbs, the barbell can easily slip out of your hands and cause serious injury. Some gyms even ban using this grip altogether to prevent accidents.
But what’s given it a reputation among lifters? Why should anyone do it? Keep reading to learn more about it.
What is a Suicide Grip?
A suicide grip is used in weightlifting where the thumb is placed on the same side as the fingers rather than wrapping around the bar. This grip is also known as a thumbless grip or a false grip. It is commonly used in exercises involving pressing movements, such as bench and overhead presses.
How to Perform a Suicide Grip
To perform a suicide grip, place your hand on the bar with your fingers wrapped around it but without wrapping your thumb around it. Instead, your thumb should rest on the same side of the bar as your fingers. This grip can be used for both barbell and dumbbell exercises.
Benefits and Risks
The main benefit of using a suicide grip is that it allows you to have a more comprehensive range of motion and can help to activate more muscle fibers in the chest and shoulders. It can also reduce strain on the wrists and forearms, as they are not required to grip the bar as tightly.
However, the use of a suicide grip is not without risks. It can be more challenging to control the weight and can increase the risk of the bar slipping out of your hands, especially when using heavier weights. This can lead to serious injury, such as dropping the weight on your chest or face.
It is essential to be cautious when using a suicide grip and to start with lighter weights until you are comfortable with the technique. It is also recommended to have a spotter present when performing exercises with a suicide grip to ensure safety.
Why Use a Suicide Grip?
So, why should anyone do it? Despite the name, some benefits are expected when you perform the suicide grip. Below are some benefits you can expect.
Using a suicide grip can activate more muscle fibers in your chest and triceps during bench press exercises. This is because the grip allows for a wider grip, which puts more emphasis on the chest muscles. Additionally, it can also help to activate the triceps more, which can help to improve your lockout strength.
Improved Grip Strength
A suicide grip can also help to improve your grip strength. This is because it forces you to rely on your wrist and forearm muscles to maintain the barbell in place. Doing so can improve your grip strength and reduce the risk of losing weight.
Better Range of Motion
The suicide grip can also help to improve your range of motion during exercises like bench presses and overhead presses. This is because the grip allows for a wider grip, which can help increase your shoulders’ range of motion. This can help to improve your overall strength and performance.
Variation in Exercises
Using a suicide grip can also add variation to your exercises. Using different grips, you can change the emphasis on different muscle groups, which can help keep your workouts challenging and exciting. It can also help prevent plateaus and improve your overall progress.
Using a suicide grip in weightlifting can help activate more muscle fibers, improve grip strength, increase range of motion, and add variation to your exercises. However, it is vital to use proper form and technique when using the suicide grip to reduce the risk of injury.
When to Avoid a Suicide Grip?
There are occasions when you should not do the type of grip for your own safety. Here are the occasions you should avoid doing suicide grip.
If you are a rookie, it is best to avoid the suicide grip until you have developed enough strength and control to use it safely.
The suicide grip requires a lot of stability and control, and beginners may not have the necessary experience to use it properly. Start with a regular grip and gradually work up to a suicide grip.
Injury or Pain
If you have any pain or injuries in your hands, wrists, or forearms, it is best to avoid the suicide grip. The suicide grip puts a lot of stress on these areas and can exacerbate existing injuries. Stick to a regular grip or use wrist wraps to provide extra support.
When lifting heavy weights, it is vital to have a secure grip. The suicide grip may not provide enough stability for heavy lifting, especially if you push yourself to your limits. Stick to a regular grip or use lifting straps to ensure a secure grip on the bar.
Lack of Control
If you have trouble controlling the bar during lifts, it is best to avoid the suicide grip. The suicide grip requires a lot of control and stability, and if you cannot maintain proper form, you could risk injury. Stick to a regular grip until you have developed enough control to use the suicide grip safely.
The suicide grip can be a valuable technique for experienced weightlifters, but it is unsuitable for everyone. Beginners, those with injuries or pain, those lifting heavy weights, and those lacking control should avoid the suicide grip. Always prioritize safety and proper form when weightlifting.
Drawing The Curtain
The suicide grip is a controversial technique in weightlifting that can be dangerous if not executed correctly. It involves placing the thumb on the same side as the fingers rather than wrapping it around the bar. This grip can increase the risk of the bar slipping out of your hands and causing injury.
However, some lifters argue that the suicide grip gives you a better range of motion and can help target specific muscles. Practicing proper form and grip strength is essential if you use this grip.
Ultimately, the decision to use the suicide grip is up to you. It’s essential to consider the potential benefits against the risks and make an informed decision. Remember always to prioritize safety in your weightlifting routine.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a suicide grip?
A suicide grip, also known as a thumbless grip, is a way of holding a barbell or dumbbell where the thumb is placed on the same side as the fingers rather than wrapping around the bar. This grip is used primarily for bench pressing and overhead pressing exercises.
Is a suicide grip safe?
While some weightlifters swear by the suicide grip, it is generally considered a risky technique. Without the support of the thumb, the barbell or dumbbell is more likely to slip out of hand and cause serious injury. It is recommended that beginners avoid using a suicide grip until they have developed the proper form and technique.
How can I avoid injury when using a suicide grip?
If you do choose to use a suicide grip, there are a few precautions you can take to minimize the risk of injury. Some of these precautions include;
- Ensure you have a spotter to assist you if the weight slips out of your hand
- Start with lighter weights and gradually try heavier weights
- Always maintain proper form and technique, keeping your wrists straight and your elbows tucked in