Fat Gripz works on the idea that making the bar on your workout equipment larger forces you to make a tighter grip and activate more of the muscle chain overall. Many pro athletes use thicker bars in general for this purpose, but you can get much the same effect using these slip-on grips.
We’re taking an in-depth look at all the pros and cons of Fat Gripz, including its benefits, competitors, and how they work. Overall, I find them very useful for their relatively low cost and worth trying out.
What Are Fat Gripz?
Fat Gripz is a grip accessory placed around the handles of barbells, dumbbells, or a large variety of other exercise machines.
They come in three sizes:
- Ones: 1 ¾ inches.
- Pro: 2 ¼ inches.
- Extreme: 2 ¾ inches.
The thicker the grip, the harder the exercise. However, they will also take you down substantially in the amount of weight you can lift, so be sure to go in understanding that. If you’ve been training for a while (2+ years), you can go for the pro series right away. Otherwise, the ones might be the best starting point, and you can upgrade from there.
By making the weight harder to grip through the thickness of the pad, Fat Gripz adds muscle activation throughout the whole arm. This increases the difficulty of weight lifting across all the muscles involved, leading to massive muscle gain.
The Benefits of Using Fat Gripz
We’ve already mentioned that the main benefit is increasing the thickness of your weight-training gear, which in turn increases the difficulty on your arms significantly.
Increased muscle activation
Using Fat Gripz increases the muscle tension all the way up what’s called the kinetic chain, forcing you to exert more force through the arm. As a result, a greater variety of muscles are activated by pushing the activation up the whole arm, increasing overall strength. In particular, you’re going to be using more of the muscles in your upper arms, shoulders, chest, and back.
Beyond hitting your full arm strength hard, using Fat Gripz can increase your grip strength too. Grip strength is key to unlocking your body’s full potential with different exercises. For example, if you’ve ever dropped a deadlift, that could be one of the reasons why. Grip strength is also essential for chin-ups, one of the best back-building exercises.
More even weight distribution
Using Fat Gripz can lower the pressure on specific joints while you exercise by distributing the weight more evenly across the body and through more muscles. This can be a relief to joins like your wrists, elbows, and shoulders.
Less joint pressure also lowers the risk of injuries, making exercise safer overall.
More balanced gains
The grips also provide a side consequence of giving you more balanced gains overall. By this, I mean that by activating your muscles in the full kinetic chain, even the smaller and lesser-used muscles, you created a more balanced exercise for the whole upper body.
Our bodies prefer to stay in general proportion, so it helps to hit as many muscles as possible so that no stop-gaps prevent your gains.
The first few times using Fat Gripz might even cause an intense burning in the muscles in your forearms. That would be from the activation of previous under-used muscles.
Fat Gripz Reviews
Fat Gripz can help you build muscle overall by creating a more intense, safer, and evenly distributed workout experience.
Fat Gripz creates greater workout intensity by activating a wider variety of muscle fibers in the upper body. It does this by forcing you to get a tighter grip on the workout equipment, activating more of the muscle chain.
You can test this yourself by placing your left hand on your right bicep and then squeezing your right hand into a fist. The tighter you squeeze, the more muscles you’ll feel activating.
The grips also provide a safer workout experience by easing the pressure on your joints. This is because you’ll get a better workout from lighter weights, which relieve pressure on the joints overall.
Some people find the loss of the amount of weight they can lift depressing with Fat Gripz, but it means you gain a greater and safer range of weights you can work up towards.
Fat Gripz are relatively inexpensive, easy to bring anywhere you need them, and extremely durable in terms of the product itself. It’s also fun to cycle between using the grips and taking them off, to see how much progress they’ve provided.
They are especially beneficial for people already hitting massive weight levels because they mean you can increase your gains again without needing to stack on more weight and put your body in greater danger.
They will power up your grip strength, in particular a ton, which is very helpful for a wide variety of other exercises.
Fat Gripz comes in three sizes, the Ones with 1 ¾ inches diameter, Pro with 2 ¼ inches, and Extreme with 2 ¾ inches. The actual feel of the grips is more firm than one might expect from the spongy look of the bands. They are more like pool noodles than sponges in texture.
Now, there are a couple of problems worth mentioning. First, Fat Gripz can get a bit slippery when sweating hard, and chalk doesn’t seem to help the situation. Be careful when using them to have a good idea of how well you can keep your grip.
It can also be a bit frustrating to find the right diameter fit, meaning that sometimes the Fat Gripz leaves a gap on the bar. They have an internal diameter of about 1 inch but can stretch to a decent degree.
However, these gripes are minor compared with the overall benefits you’ll reap by using Fat Gripz. Highly recommended product.
Which Exercises Should I Do Using Fat Gripz?
The best exercises for using Fat Gripz target the upper body, including the shoulders, back, and especially the arms. Getting bigger forearms with a tighter grip and bigger triceps and biceps is a huge part of the appeal of using Fat Gripz.
Here are a few of the best exercises to get you started using Fat Gripz. Try beginning with moderate weight, much lower than your maximum, and doing a small number of reps to see how each exercise has changed with the Fat Gripz on.
Standing or sitting with a dumbbell in each hand, bring each arm to a 90-degree angle at the elbow with palms facing upward.
Now, lift both fists until the dumbbells nearly touch your shoulder. Then, reverse the curl and let each arm come back to the 90-degree position.
To do a hammer curl, begin with a dumbbell in each hand with arms relaxed at your sides. You can move your grip nearer to the top of each dumbbell and should start with your fists slightly forward from your hips. Then, face your palms towards each other.
Keeping your upper arms in place, curl your dumbbells as close to your shoulders as possible.
Then, bring the weights back down to the starting position.
To do a pinwheel curl, begin with each arm at your side and palms facing each other, just as your would with a hammer curl.
Instead of lifting up to the shoulders, alternate each arm as you lift towards the opposite shoulder, swinging across the chest as you lift.
Bring each arm back to the starting position before you begin the next curl.
Dumbbell triceps extensions
Begin with one dumbbell in one hand and lift it up and over your head, gripping it behind your head.
From there, lift the dumbbell up and down behind your head, working your triceps and letting the weight go down to the bottom of your neck and back up towards the top of the head.
Alternate hands after each set.
You can cycle between these exercises or find more on your own. These will especially hit your biceps and triceps and make great use of the Fat Gripz without being too dangerous to start.
Try to tire out both the biceps and triceps with about 5 to 10 minutes of these exercises. It’s quick and will hit your arms hard. Doing these exercises a couple of times a week plus adding in more for variation over time will lead to muscle growth in no time.
Best Fat Gripz Alternatives
Snake Bite Grips
Snake Bite Grips – Thick Bar/Dumbbell Grips Muscle Growth AdapterSee latest price
Snake Bite Grips are very similar to Fat Gripz but add a laser-etched snakeskin knurling pattern to the outside for a better grip pattern. This pattern does help with the grip when sweaty and slippery and feels great. The laser-etching means the pattern is very precise and consistent, which is nice, plus the black color and design looks and feels good.
However, The Snake Bite price point is quite a bit more, so it may not be worth it for a relatively small difference.
Fat Gripz is still the gold standard of grips, and these cost more than them, plus there are cheap knock-off alternatives for even lower.
Even though these might be the best grips on the market currently, it’s up to you if the higher price point is worth it.
Frequently Asked Questions about Fat Gripz
How Does Fat Gripz Work?
Fat Gripz works by forcing your hands to get a wider grip on the equipment. This activates more of the muscle chain by making it more challenging to keep a firm grip as you use the equipment. It works on a wide variety of different gear, including barbells, dumbbells, and other forms of resistance gear.
Does Fat Gripz really work?
Yes. However, some people find the intense burning sensation it can leave from working out deep muscle tissues too much. In addition, the fact that you’ll drop substantially in the amount of weight you can lift is also frustrating for some people.
Do Fat Gripz build bigger biceps?
Yes and no. Fat Gripz activates more muscles, which includes muscles in the bicep and shoulder areas. These will grow and create an overall larger bicep area. Furthermore, your body likes to grow muscle in proportion. So by working out more muscles overall, your body will be more willing to allow your bicep to grow too.
Fat Gripz are an easy-to-use, long-lasting way to increase the difficulty of your arm, shoulder, and back workouts. By expanding the muscle chain activation through the need for a firmer grip, you’ll make more significant gains in the deep muscles of the upper body. These, in turn, will increase your body’s ability to grow its muscles proportionately, which is what it prefers.
If you only keep working on a few muscles, your body won’t grow further without increasing your other muscles.
That, plus the fact that using Fat Gripz lowers the pressure on your joints, are great reasons to give them a try. Finally, they are relatively inexpensive and straightforward to try out.