The importance of having a strong grip as a Police officer can be directly related to how effective you are at restraining and possibly detaining a person of interest. You’ll have to achieve at least a 30kg reading on the dynamometer at the Vic Pol, NSW Police Force and WA Police Force fitness tests.
Research has shown that your grip strength is a good predictor of your overall strength, muscular endurance as well as your health. For the purpose of this article we will keep the focus on how to improve your grip strength to not only pass your fitness test but to ensure you are set up for success at both the academy and throughout your career.
How to Train for grip strength?
Firstly let’s look at 4 considerations when training to improve your grip strength.
Next, let's look at the different training methods and exercise you can employ in your workout routine.
The name says it all ‘deadlift’. Simply lifting up a dead weight off the ground with your hands. There are several different forms of deadlift including traditional, Sumo, Romanian, deficit, snatch grip, trap bar and the list goes on.
A basic set and rep range can be 4 sets of 10 reps with 60 seconds rest between each set. This can be conducted one to two times per week.
And remember.... Don't use an alternate grip.
2. Farmers Carry
3. Pull-up variations
My favourite!!! There are an abundance of pull up variations and we recommend you incorporate all of them in your training regime. Pull ups, chin ups, alternate grip, use double ropes, single rope, neutral grip and many more.
If you aren’t yet capable of doing complete pull ups you can still build your grip strength by simply hanging from the bar.
And remember to use a full grip not a false grip.
You can also try flexed arm hangs and active arm hang where you retract your shoulder blades whilst hanging. Or you can also do lateral or inverted pull ups.
A basic set and rep range can be 5 sets of 5 reps with 60 seconds rest between each set OR 5 sets of 10 second holds.
4. Weighted holds and pulls
Weighted holds are where you grip a weight such as a dumbbell and attempt to hold your arm in a straight line out from your body for a certain amount of time. You can also hold the weight with a bent arm and you may wish to hold it to the side, straight out front or even over head.
Exercise form is crucial
Coaching cues to help whilst you are doing your grip training to ensure you are holding the right form.
1 - turn your lats on
2 - lock your triceps into your arm pits
3 - have a proud chest
4 - brace your mid section
Include these training tips into your weekly regime and reap the rewards during your Police fitness test. If you need any more information about how to improve your performance on any of the fitness test components then please feel free to get in touch.
Michael and Carly both have walked the path you are about to take and are commited to help you get started with your training for a successful enlistment with free tips and articles.