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  1. #1
    Spoon's Avatar
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    ? about thumbless grip on bench press?

    guys i have been using the thumbless grip for years now on my bench. when i go heavy, my left wrist always gets sore. ive tried experimenting with other grip styles but the thumbless is what i am comfortable and strongest with. can you guys suggest anything? thanks

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    IMO i'd get rid of it. I'm unsure of the weight you are throwing around,but I wouldnt take the risk. Heres a quote taken from Monster muscle the magazine(this month). "When grasping the bar, wrap your thumbs completely around the bar.I have see paramedics carry lifters out on stretchers who use a thumbless (suicide) grip,because the bar rolled off their palms and fell onto their chest." Just a quote,but its not a fun thought.. Also consider hes talking about powerlifting and not bodybuilding.

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    Quote Originally Posted by goodtobeapimp
    IMO i'd get rid of it. I'm unsure of the weight you are throwing around,but I wouldnt take the risk. Heres a quote taken from Monster muscle the magazine(this month). "When grasping the bar, wrap your thumbs completely around the bar.I have see paramedics carry lifters out on stretchers who use a thumbless (suicide) grip,because the bar rolled off their palms and fell onto their chest." Just a quote,but its not a fun thought.. Also consider hes talking about powerlifting and not bodybuilding.
    reason why i use this grip is because i get to support the entire weight at the base/lower part of my palm. when wrapping my thumb i feel like its not so stable and the bar is inthe middle of my palm? can you picture this? thanks

    by the way i ve been looking for the past post on metal militia grip styles but i cantfind it.

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    It's hard to imagine you getting a more stable grip with thumbless. Although everyone is different, I think its something you just have to play with. Maybe even just practice some floor presses with some heavy weight and try different grips to find your peak point. Here's the link http://www.metalmilitia.net/ but the site is down or at least was....

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    Quote Originally Posted by goodtobeapimp
    It's hard to imagine you getting a more stable grip with thumbless. Although everyone is different, I think its something you just have to play with. Maybe even just practice some floor presses with some heavy weight and try different grips to find your peak point. Here's the link http://www.metalmilitia.net/ but the site is down or at least was....
    thanks bro, yup site is down il try again later. will update you on my progress!

  6. #6
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    Thumbless is the only grip I ever use....

    For me it's easier on my wrists, so I'm

    not sure why you are having a problem...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by buff87
    Thumbless is the only grip I ever use....

    For me it's easier on my wrists, so I'm

    not sure why you are having a problem...

    its a problem on my left wrist only. even when i do dumbel curls, its my left that always suffers.

    i guess it when im on the upward motion of the bench, i tend to exert more force on my right hand. i know it should be balanced but on extra heavy lifts my right temds to be the more dominant one.

  8. #8
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    Do you think you injuried it doing something else?

    I have a problem with my right wrist from one time

    doing side laterals with 50lbs dumbbells and my wrist

    felt like it popped out and then back in... Maybe you

    have a nagging injury from something else... Just a guess...

    Quote Originally Posted by Spoon
    its a problem on my left wrist only. even when i do dumbel curls, its my left that always suffers.

  9. #9
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    holy cow 50 for side laterals? geez my hand would pop out for sure nope its not an injury, hope not. anyway i guess the weight i was using for the dumbels was a bit heavy, i will lower weight and asses from there. thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by goodtobeapimp
    IMO i'd get rid of it. I'm unsure of the weight you are throwing around,but I wouldnt take the risk. Heres a quote taken from Monster muscle the magazine(this month). "When grasping the bar, wrap your thumbs completely around the bar.I have see paramedics carry lifters out on stretchers who use a thumbless (suicide) grip,because the bar rolled off their palms and fell onto their chest." Just a quote,but its not a fun thought.. Also consider hes talking about powerlifting and not bodybuilding.
    it has happened to me!...and trust me it hurts...

    was warming up with 135...took it down held it for a good stretch and blew it up...bar kind came off my and and rolled off my plams and landed in between my chin and bottom lip...then when i reacted to what happen somehow the bar got on my throat and started chokeing me...no lifting partner so it felt like years b/f someone got it off of me...then i layed there and felt my mouth fill with blood and another guy saw it happening and set me up real quick before i started to choke on my own blood...very painful

    had absolutely perfect teeth until then...

    spent the next two weeks tearing my food into small bites and basically swallowing it like pills, and drinking shakes and soup from a straw...

    but...i still use the open grip ...im just very careful now

  11. #11
    Brian D is offline New Member
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    Dude do you have heavy duty wrist wraps? I use a thumbless grip almost always,and when I go heavy my wrists start to feel I start to use me inzer wraps!! does the trick for me

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian D
    Dude do you have heavy duty wrist wraps? I use a thumbless grip almost always,and when I go heavy my wrists start to feel I start to use me inzer wraps!! does the trick for me

    nope have never used wraps but i think it is something i will get soon

  13. #13
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    try wrapping the thumb around. I used to bench with thumb under and in doing this you aren't recruiting all of your muscles during the lift. You really want to keep your wrist as straight as possible, grip the bar very hard, and this gets the triceps involved in the lift....works wonders after some practice with it.

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    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by ColdStone
    it has happened to me!...and trust me it hurts...

    was warming up with 135...took it down held it for a good stretch and blew it up...bar kind came off my and and rolled off my plams and landed in between my chin and bottom lip...then when i reacted to what happen somehow the bar got on my throat and started chokeing me...no lifting partner so it felt like years b/f someone got it off of me...then i layed there and felt my mouth fill with blood and another guy saw it happening and set me up real quick before i started to choke on my own blood...very painful

    had absolutely perfect teeth until then...

    spent the next two weeks tearing my food into small bites and basically swallowing it like pills, and drinking shakes and soup from a straw...

    but...i still use the open grip ...im just very careful now



    lmao

    but not at what happend to you but how you told the story. i could see that happening to you.

    you've changed my grip from now on

  15. #15
    Aboot's Avatar
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    Also, if you plan to compete you may want to switch to a wrapping your thumb around the bar. A lot of federations won't allow you to use a thumbless grip due to safety concerns, i.e. they don't want to peeling your brains off the bench.

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    I have been using tumbless for several years. Once I started to routinely go over 315 for a flat press I started having a problem with my hands sliding and some wrist discomfort. I started to wrap my wrists and it helps keep them from sliding as well as the extra support. You have to figure that your muscles grow and get stronger - but those little itty-bitty bones in your wrists do not... and after you get to a certain point - giving them a little more support only makes sense. Today, I use a thumbless grip (I can better invision the 'pushing' movement in my mind - better recruit the chest) and I wrap my wrists.

  17. #17
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    Also - when using a thumbless grip, be sure the load is resting on your bone structure and not pulling back on your wrist. You kinda need an ideal body structure and hand size to effectively use this grip...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Warrior
    I have been using tumbless for several years. Once I started to routinely go over 315 for a flat press I started having a problem with my hands sliding and some wrist discomfort. I started to wrap my wrists and it helps keep them from sliding as well as the extra support. You have to figure that your muscles grow and get stronger - but those little itty-bitty bones in your wrists do not... and after you get to a certain point - giving them a little more support only makes sense. Today, I use a thumbless grip (I can better invision the 'pushing' movement in my mind - better recruit the chest) and I wrap my wrists.


    A good set of wrist wraps is priceless.. A lot of people don't like the idea of using wrist wraps or any other support,but when I seen them at the arnold benching 800,900lbs I'll be a little more open about the whole idea.

    One that always got me was Anthony Clark. Reverse gripping 800 pounds. That takes some balls to even use a grip like that with anymore weight then 300 pounds or so.

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    here is why i wrap my thumb. Video for ya.

    http://www.powerlifting.ru/files/ph...patov_230_1.mpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by masswithclass
    here is why i wrap my thumb. Video for ya.

    http://www.powerlifting.ru/files/ph...patov_230_1.mpg

    Link doesn't work.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aboot
    Link doesn't work.
    Aww i wanted to see some gore!!
    Seriously tho. I had the pleasure to meeting one of britians olympic weightlifing coaches once and he was teaching me and my temmates how to do cleans. Well he started talking about saftey and mentioned that at a bench meet he had been at, one guy was warming up with a considerable weight. Someone idly walked past and knocked the bar. he lost his grip, it fell onto his seternum and split his chest open!! ****ing gross!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by goodtobeapimp
    A good set of wrist wraps is priceless.. A lot of people don't like the idea of using wrist wraps or any other support,but when I seen them at the arnold benching 800,900lbs I'll be a little more open about the whole idea.

    One that always got me was Anthony Clark. Reverse gripping 800 pounds. That takes some balls to even use a grip like that with anymore weight then 300 pounds or so.
    ive seen him do that!...my old PL'ing coach was his training partner for a year or so and he came down and did a big show for our high school...he used duct tape around his wrists in the initial warm up lifts...then when he went for the big ones (700-800???) he actually had his hands tapped onto the bar!...awesome to watch

  23. #23
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    okay here's another good reason to use the thumbed grip....

    A buddy of mine dropped 175kg onto his head, well, upper lip,nose and jaw doing exactly the same thing. He now has a metal plate on both sides of his jaw, reconstraction of his plalate, a nose that has just, 10 years on been sorted but not like it used to be and a wife that is very thankfull he is still alive!

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Base
    okay here's another good reason to use the thumbed grip....

    A buddy of mine dropped 175kg onto his head, well, upper lip,nose and jaw doing exactly the same thing. He now has a metal plate on both sides of his jaw, reconstraction of his plalate, a nose that has just, 10 years on been sorted but not like it used to be and a wife that is very thankfull he is still alive!
    OUCH - I had a dumbell fall apart on my face once... the washer fell off and the plates crashed on my mellon... thankfully it missed my nose and teeth. What happened to your friend is insane man... that was a lot of weight - 385 pounds on you brain bucket... OUCH

    BTW - I find thumbless is easier with a thicker bar... but heed the warning above...

  25. #25
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    Lol.. the ol' suicide bench press... I for one wouldn't do it.. but hey, it's your face and your ribs

  26. #26
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    i tried the grip with no thumb today and it was harder then with a thumb?

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by H-BOL
    i tried the grip with no thumb today and it was harder then with a thumb?
    All depends on what you're used to.

  28. #28
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    thumbs around the bar

    I've always used a thumbless grip as well, but as others have said, some federations require thumbs around the bar for competition. IPF and USAPL both require thumbs around the bar even for squat... believe that... Thumbs around the bar forces my elbows out into more of a bodybuilding press but wrist wraps will definitely help. Don't use them all of the time because you need to strengthen those areas but for heavy bench use the wraps.
    Quote Originally Posted by goodtobeapimp
    A good set of wrist wraps is priceless.. A lot of people don't like the idea of using wrist wraps or any other support,but when I seen them at the arnold benching 800,900lbs I'll be a little more open about the whole idea.

    One that always got me was Anthony Clark. Reverse gripping 800 pounds. That takes some balls to even use a grip like that with anymore weight then 300 pounds or so.

  29. #29
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    ....I personally have witnessed two accidents involving bench presses and a thumbless grip. One guy rolled the bar off and it came down on his chest - basically crushed it. He had to go to the ER real quick and was in bad shape for four months. Detached sternum and flail chest - bruised pericardium (lining of the heart) and other goodies. The other guy dropped it on his face - broke all of his front teeth off and fractured his anterior maxilla (upper jaw). He is reconstructed now, but looks nothing like the good-looking guy he once was. Why take the risk??

  30. #30
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    I too once trained using the thumbless grip, but I had to switch because so many powerlifting organizations these days don't allow it. Yes it will feel weird at first and you won't feel like you can lift as much. But after a few weeks once the muscles in your hands and wrist become stronger you'll be fine. But my advice to you is to go ahead and switch grips now. You will have to one day sooner or later. One of two things will happen: One, you are going to have a accident eventually. Just a matter of time. Two, the organization that you want to lift with will soon make the rule if they haven't already banning Thumbless Grips. Just stop fighting it and make the change. You will be glad you did one you get use to the feel of having your thumb around the bar.

  31. #31
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    Recent Accident

    Just came back from the gym today....
    I was doing close grip bench for 255
    I lifted the bar off the racks with a thumbless grip as discussed in this thread, i made a slight adjustment to get my back better on the bench and before i knew it the bar slipped down and was bouncing off my chest....i feel fortunate it did not land any higher or lower on my body...it scraped up my forarms on the way down and landed in the exact place i always lower teh bar to on my chest...the bar toook a pretty big bounce and my ribs seemed to hold up pretty well.... im sitting here about 3 hours after in some discomfort but not too much... chest feels heavy and the brusing is starting to set in its becoming hard to turn my torso to the side and movements like that ... coughing and laughing is a bitch too ....im prob gunna head to the emergency room tonite for sum xrays just to make sure i didnt crack or **** aanything up too bad... ive never had a set of bruised ribs or a bruised sternum...so im wonderin how long of a break ill be loookin at... i just wanted to post this to show ppl that it can happen to you...i had read all these posts before thinking it could never happen...i know when i get back to it if i choose the thumbless grip again ill be sure to wrap up...it truely is better to be safe then sorry

  32. #32
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    Look this is not a good idea, esp when using max weights. Most organizations dont allow you to use this grip in competition. Mine actually allows it IF you sign a special waiver basically signing away their medical liability for you. For all those of you who claim its better for the wrists just get some damn wrist wraps. That's what I do and practically every powerlifter I know.

  33. #33
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    I've been using the thumbless grip for a while and I always push the bar up off the rack (but still over the holders) and let it take its natural roll so that the arch of the bar is in the palm of my hands the most. Less likely to roll this way.

    But after reading some of this, I may re-think it all.

  34. #34
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    thumbless is fine if you have long enough fingers, i never lost aweiht in my life with it, also, it ismore biomechanically correct, thumles is actually like a real pushing motion , you can get an exta 10lbs by just modifying your grip, i don't recomend this to all, but if you compete, it may be worth a try, hell when i was shown the grip, i didn't believe it, but it worked after a few wks

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doc.Sust
    thumbless is fine if you have long enough fingers, i never lost aweiht in my life with it, also, it ismore biomechanically correct, thumles is actually like a real pushing motion , you can get an exta 10lbs by just modifying your grip, i don't recomend this to all, but if you compete, it may be worth a try, hell when i was shown the grip, i didn't believe it, but it worked after a few wks
    Yeah - it helps to relieve some wrist stress from having your thumbs around the bar... like you said, thumbs around the bar is more of a pulling stance than pushing.

    For wrist discomfort when going heavy - I also wrap my wrist tight to help keep them from tilting or sliding. Thumbless has helped with wrist discomfort as well as wrapping a bar for presses (it gives a little extra width of padding to the bar that seems to help)...

    But with everything said, thumbless is probably something than nobody should ever directly recommend to someone - or they could resent you for it, if it is a grip they could not control...

  36. #36
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    I've always gone thumbless, but I've never even gotten close to having any trouble.

    That said, my bench max is low, so I may not be de****g with the kind of weights that would make it dangerous.

    I guess I'm not just letting the weight sit there either, I'm getting some wrap with my fingers. Almost like a Hook grip for pulling exercises.

    Thumbless does allow me to keep my elbows in more.

    I think Dave Tate on Elite Fitness Systems is a thumbless bencher, but he may have changed lately if that grip is, in fact, being banned.

  37. #37
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    USE INZER Heavy Duty Wrist Wraps

    USE INZER Heavy Duty Wrist Wraps go to inzernet.com

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