Improving your handgun shooting performance is made easier when you improve both total grip strength and individual finger strength. A strong grip will only enhance a shooter’s recovery from recoil. Handgrips from the sporting goods store as well as some specialized ‘shooter specific’ hand strengthening tools are too often made of inexpensive plastic and built with springs of minimum resistance. The hand exercising tools sold in some weight lifting gyms to develop and ‘strong man’ grip strength tend to be of professional quality and will generally better serve to help develop a shooter’s grip strength.
There is at least one hand gripper company that produces a series of grip strength tools that are the gold standard of grippers and I believe should be in the shooting box of every serious shooter: IronMind’s Captains of Crush hand grippers.
The IronMind company produce hand grippers and finger grippers that are used by shooters, athletes, weight lifters and strong men the world over. Their Captains of Crush hand grippers come in ten different strengths with a range of spring pressure from the starter ‘Guide’ and ‘Sport’ gripper of only 60lb and 80lb respective to the truly amazing ‘Number Four’ that only a few men in history have been able to grip close. IronMind also produces a specialized set of finger grippers called the IMTUG that are also ideal for shooters because each allows you to train one or two fingers at a time. The Captains of Crush grippers and IMTUG grippers are serious training tools for the shooter who is looking to substantially increase his hand and finger strength.
The best place for a shooter to begin grip training program is with a starter set of grippers. A Captains of Crush hand gripper set including a ‘CoC Sport – 80 lb,’ a ‘COC Trainer – 100lb,’ and a ‘Coc No. 1 – 180 lb’ can be the best investment in improving your handgun recoil control.
If you do decide to improve your grip strength with Captain of Crush grippers remember these are serious exercise tools. Always start with warm-up sets using a minimum number of reps. Also ‘Banging out’ an endless number of easy reps will do nothing for your grip strength. Keep you reps low and limit sets for each hand to five or fewer. And just like weight training give yourself every other day to recover. Your recoil control will improve in short order.