Straight to the Bar

All Things Strength


Horizontal Pinch Device
Posted By Scott Bird

Horizontal Pinch DeviceAnother brilliant entry for the DIY Equipment competitionChris Rice‘s Horizontal Pinch Device. A few words from the man himself will tell you exactly why I want one of these (and if you train grip, you’re probably thinking the same thing) :

Before the build :

One of the problems I have encountered since I began to train grip is pinch training. This is primarily tested and trained isometricly and while I have had some success with it I feel that being able to train dynamically over a full ROM may have several benefits I would like to work with including greater hand health than isometric work only. The TTK, Squeezer, Pony clamp etc work the thumb, palm and fingers but in a way not quite like pinching plates, block weights, climbing or the Euro Pinch apparatus and have a weakness in the lack of use by the whole hand. My hope is to make an adjustable width pinch tool that works in a horizontal direction, has the ability to adjust from extremely wide to as close to zero as possible. I hope to make the face plates high enough for full hand length contact like plates or a Euro setup as well as angle adjustable from square to around the angle to match the sides of a York Blob. It will have adjustable stops for plate adjustment and prestretch on the resistance bands which will allow isometrics as well. It will use regular rubber bands for resistance. I have tried a back to back L configuration in the past but could never figure out how to keep the pinch plates parallel over a wide movement range or avoid the feeling of one side movement. This time I’m using a slide which will be constant over any distance.

and following construction (and use) :

OK – it’s done now and I’ve used it several times now. First, it’s very smooth – very smooth, no binding at all. Everything worked out about like I had hoped it would. The horizontal setup feels much more like a block weight or plates, Euro pinch or whatever. With proper tension on each side, both sides move unlike the feeling I have with other devices where one side feels locked and one moves, a couple less bands on the thumb side makes both move together. The angle adjustment is easy, quick, and works nicely. The width adjustment only takes a couple seconds. Changing to isometric mode also only takes a couple seconds. I can relax the tension on the bands easily to keep their strength longer. The movement feels good – better than always squeezing as hard as possible and no movement, hopefully this will be a good thing over time. It can be loaded with small changes in resistance giving a method of measuring progress and strength gains. All in all, I’m very happy with it – only time will tell what gains I will have with it.

Chris, that looks fantastic.

Incidentally, if this has got you thinking about grabbing one for yourself, swing by the SttB Strength Store. Massive range.

Over to you. Drop us a line on Twitter ( @scottbird ), or add a comment below.



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Written By Scott Bird
Scott is a long-time fitness enthusiast (Jan 2004!), writer and photographer living in Sydney, Australia. If you share the passion for spending a bit of time under a bar, welcome. Love hearing how everyone else trains. You can connect via X (Formerly Twitter), Facebook and the various networks listed in the sidebar.
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