Earlier this year I had the pleasure of finally meeting Ryan Pitts, the CEO of Strongergrip Enterprises. I had gotten to know Ryan online via various strength training websites, and more importantly, I had bought a bunch of his equipment. Everything Ryan makes is designed to make your hands and or wrists stronger. What sets him apart from his competition is that he is so obviously passionate about what he does. He is an entrepreneur in the truest sense of the word. So I am thrilled to announce that Ryan has agreed to let me sell his products on World’s Strongest Librarian. I’m going to be writing reviews of all of his products that I have used, since I know a lot of my readers are also after stronger hands. Today I want to review the loadable sledgehammer, which you can see being slammed into Ryan’s head below:
It is exactly what it sound like: a sledgehammer with a hollow head that you can open up and fill with lead shot, sand, or anything else you like. Now, the real question: why in the world would anyone want to do this?
Well, there are those of us in the world who exist solely to destroy things. People that tear cards, bend nails, twist and break horseshoes–we love nothing so much as macho nonsense and feats of strength. In order to develop strong enough wrists to withstand the pressure of some of these strongman feats, you have to practice moving a locked wrist against resistance, or moving the wrist through its limited range of motion against weight.
For instance, here is a clip of someone doing a sledge hammer lever exercise:
To answer the questions you are surely asking:
1. Yes, this is a dumb thing to do
2. Yes, it is as awesome as it looks
This sort of leverage work creates powerful wrists that won’t flop around as soon as they’re trying to hold their position against something like the Ironmind Red Nail, which I am currently chasing.
So again, why a loadable sledge hammer? Simple. I started levering with an 8 pound hammer, which I quickly outgrew. I paid $30 for that dumb thing. The next model up at the store was a 10. Was I going to shell out another $30 every time I needed to add weight?
Much better to buy a loadable hammer which I could add weight to, or subtract from, as needed. This might sound a little cumbersome at first, but it’s very quick and easy if you think it through: I simply cut three milk jugs in half and mark lines on the edge where I know, if filled to the line, the jugs will weight two pounds, five pounds, and seven pounds. These are not magic numbers, but they are consistent with the amount of shuffling between weights that I do as I test things.
So there you go. If you want stronger wrists for steel bending, or your sport, or you want enough wrist power to press a 48 kilo kettlebell, I highly recommend a loadable sledge, along with one or two of every other thing Ryan makes. It is quality equipment and he takes pride in his work.
Grip strength training quickly becomes an obsession, so be warned. But it is a superior addiction. I decree it.