How long should I warm-up to secure train with the grippers?

I'm asking not about general warm-up but about warm-up aimed specifically on hands. Should it be 5 minutes, or 1 minute intensive hands and fingers warm-up is enough?

I'm training with relative light grippers - 150 lbs, and I'm still not closing it. I've once had problem (about a year ago), when I've got 'clicking' finger', but I think it was because of missing finger-oriented warm-up.

  • Could you use an even lighter gripper, one that you can close? And then build up to the 150lbs one? I feel like fingers work better with relatively high volume sets, because that's safer on the connective tissue, so if you can't do 1 rep on a gripper, maybe that's a warning sign?
    – DavidR
    Commented Feb 1, 2013 at 19:08

1 Answer 1


I do a lot of rock climbing, and do a finger specific warmup for it, otherwise I get popping and clicking in my fingers, just like you describe. I don't use heavy grippers like you describe, so maybe someone else will have a more relevant post.

I use grip putty like this. Some sort of physical therapy putty might also work. I usually squeeze it with my free hand as I'm driving to the climbing gym, sometimes for a fairly long time, 10-20 minutes, alternating hands as I'm driving. It may be more than is required, but it goes a long way to loosen up all the connective tissues in my fingers. Other than putty, any medium or light resistance squeezable object would do (once on a road trip I used a plush dog's chew toy I bought at a grocery store). They're just a lot of different moving parts in the fingers, and it takes me a good long while to get them all loosened up and moving properly, but I see big improvement when I do.

I also do 5 minutes of light cardio to get my blood flowing.

My $0.02

  • This clicking was not the normal sound of cracking, but something like blockade in finger Commented Feb 1, 2013 at 19:04
  • yeah... its not like when you intentionally pop your fingers. What I would feel is more like the tendons would be stiff and not moving freely, and they'll "pop" a bit if I grab a strenuous climbing hold.
    – DavidR
    Commented Feb 1, 2013 at 19:07

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