Disclaimer: RipToned Provided the straps (at no cost) in exchange for a review of the product. All thoughts and opinions are of PancakeWarriors.
If you are new to weight training and are unsure what lifting straps are you’ve come to the right place. Lifting straps help you hold heavier weight in your hands by using a strap that wraps around your wrists and then around the weight; this helps take your grip out of the equation. Lifting straps are no different than any other tool in your gym. They are there to help you achieve your next level of awesomeness!
Lifting straps should be part of your plan to achieve that fitness goal you’ve set for yourselves. Whether your a long time lifter or just starting out, lifting straps can help you overcome hurdles and lift heavier. If you aren’t lifting heavy yet, why not? Lifting straps are meant to put the focus back on the muscle group you are trying to work on and fatigue. Stop worrying about things like your grip failing during a set and dropping the weight! If you’re someone who’s been stuck on the same weight for awhile it’s time to consider getting a pair, seriously.
But what about grip strength? Well, what about it? I hear the argument all the time. You know, the one that if you use lifting straps that your grip will suffer for it. You’ll end up cheating yourself, your grip strength will dwindle away, and soon you won’t be able to grip a 5 pound weight (yes I’m exaggerating)! If this is the argument in your head, let common sense win. Are you really doing rows or shrugs to build up your grip strength? No.. no you’re not. So why are you letting your grip stand in the way of increasing weight on a back or shoulder focused day? You shouldn’t be. There are plenty of other opportunities to work on grip strength or train your grip during another day if it’s that much of a concern. Besides, the point of lifting straps is to use them only when needed!
So which to choose? There are so many different types of straps out there: long, short, padded, glove/strap combos, leather. Which ones are for you? Personally I don’t like wearing gloves at the gym so that rules out the glove/strap combo. I like being able to put on the straps when I need them and take them off when I’m done. No hassle, no fuss. I also like my straps to have a bit more length. It’s always a bummer when your straps too short :)!
I actually bought a pair of Rip Toned lifting straps on Amazon after reading the reviews. As soon as I got them, I put them to work in the gym and I fell in love immediately. Before I knew it, Sam was stealing my straps, as she was having issues increasing her weight on deadlifts and rows; the bar was ripping into her hands. We decided to reach out to Mark at Rip Toned to let him know how much we enjoyed the straps and that we wanted to write a review. Whether you’re serious about weight training or it’s just a hobby, sooner or later and you’re going to get tired of that plateau. This is where Rip Toned has your back. Why? Because the guys at Rip Toned have made a great pair of lifting straps; they are did it right.
Whether I’m banging out some barbell shoulder shrugs or a set of reverse lat pull downs. I’ve been using these bad boys (so has Sam!) for a few months now and they’ve made all the difference. I couldn’t imagine using any other pair. They making me feel secure with no slip and no stretching due to it’s superior stitching. I’ve been able to majorly increase my overall weight while lifting. I’m no longer re-racking my weight because my grip is giving on my heaviest sets. What’s even better is that these guys give a 100% guarantee and have a life time warranty on their straps. There’s just no getting any better than that!
Rip Toned is working with Pancake Warriors to get a pair of these lifting straps in your hands with a giveaway. 4 lucky winners will be lifting heavier!
Weighted Chin-ups – With a weight belt or holding a dumbbell between your legs wrap the strap around the pull up bar and pull yourself up from your back, not your biceps. Make sure to engage your back, keep your core tight. Do this move until failure. If pull-ups are new to you, just wrap the strap around the bar while standing on a chair or bench. Once the straps are secure, hop up and try to raise your chest up to the pull up bar. Sam uses the pull up machine at the gym as it provides a bit of counterbalance and allows her to bang out more reps and get stronger. The straps really help with grip.
Reverse Lat Pull down – Much like the chin up, wrap the straps around the pull down bar and pull down in a reverse fashion. Palms should be facing you. Use your back muscles to pull the bar down to your clavicle (your collarbone). Don’t use your biceps or shoulders to do this move.
Barbell Rows – Wrap the straps around the bar with palms facing you. Bend over slightly at the waist and pull the bar into your pelvis. Squeeze your back to crack that egg between your shoulder blades.
Barbell Shoulder Shrugs – Start by wrapping the lifting strap around the bar and palms facing behind you. Slowly stand up straight but have a very slight bend to your upper back. We want to target the traps and neck. Keep knees slightly bent, lift (shrug) your shoulders as if to say “Whhaaaaaat?” You will have to squeeze your back trap muscles to hold the weight. Slowly lower your shoulders back down. This is one rep. On your final rep hold for 10 seconds.
Deadlift – Strap around the bar, palms facing your. Knees should be shoulder width apart and your butt should be squatted to the floor. Keeping the back perfectly straight, shoulders pulled back and chest proud, lift up with your legs not your back. Keep your head and chest up and push through your heels. Your back should not be bending to lift the weight, only your legs pushing up. Keep the core engaged! Here is a great check to see if you are doing deadlifts right. The bar should never be more than 3 inches from your body at any time during the movement. You will almost be scraping your knees and shins as you lift. NOTE: watch your shins as your pull the bar up and your knees as set the bar down. Return to starting the same way you stood out, back straight, chest proud and squat legs down, sticking the butt back. Do not bend at the waist or your back at any time during this exercise.
Romanian Deadlift – Start the same way you started the traditional deadlift if the weight is on the floor. If you are lucky enough to have a squat rack to work out, pick up the weight from the rack, using a tight core, shoulders pulled back and chest proud. Standing up straight, arms slightly wider than hip distance. Keeping the core tight and back straight, bend at the hips pushing the butt back, keeping the bar close to the body and knees just barely bent. You should feel your hamstrings pull. If you don’t you’re not doing it right, push that butt back! Stand back up using the same motions, keeping the bar close, back straight and core tight. That’s one rep.
Hanging Leg Raises – Get a step to help you reach the bars. Wrap the straps around the bar, whichever way you feel comfortable you will be hanging for a while. Lift yourself off the step, engage your core and pull legs up keeping them as straight as you can then lower them down all while keeping the back straight and not swinging wildly. This is a slow controlled movement meant to really build core strength. Do this until failure 4 times- try to get 20-25 reps. If you start to wear out, do knee raises (where you bring your knees up to the chest instead of keeping the legs straight) or alternate knee raises with leg raises.