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So a long time ago I bought these hand grippers and removed the soft foam grip that you use when using the grippers. I believe I was thinking that if my hands have to deal with the hard plastic that's under the soft foam grip, my hands would get 'tougher' since not all materials are nice and soft to grip-on in the real world.

(By the way: I think I threw away / lost the soft foam grips, so there's no getting them back.)

(Also: I have no idea what the grip strength level/rating for this is, but it gives me a good hand workout for 20~25 reps)

I found these grippers a month ago and decided to use them for my workouts during the COVID-19 pandemic. I've for the past month or so been doing about 20~25 reps on both hands with this modified hand gripper (no soft foam grip). The hard plastic is slightly uncomfortable and it's got a slightly rough/bumpy surface at some areas, but nothing horribly painful. However, a couple of weeks into this modified gripper I have noticed that there are a couple of small skin abrasions/breaking of the skin on my palm because I'm dealing with this hard plastic. There's no bleeding or anything.... perhaps skin abrasions are good as they make your hand palms tougher with calluses??

I just wanted to know if this "modification" I made is dangerous to my hand palm's health and may cause health complications. Do I need to sanitize the gripper's surface if it is breaking my palm's skin? It was really easy to remove the soft foam grip by the way: (You just slip them off the gripper like taking off socks, so it's not like the manufacturer tried to absolutely prevent people from removing the soft foam grip, but this might be because it's a cheap gripper)

This is what the hand gripper would've hypothetically looked like with the soft foam grip (The black and red foamy bit): https://ibb.co/xzcwNHF

This is what it looks like now without the soft foam grip: https://ibb.co/BrX5Fvm

This is probably quite a weird question to read; Thank you for bearing with me and thank you for your time, everyone!.

  • . rubber grips will be more comfortable and not cause calluses. overtime no grips will cause less abrasions and more calluses. You don't want to get an infection, sanitizer such as Lysol might help, but you're hands can still get infected from present bacteria on your hands, so its not guaranteed. you said you want more "reality" situations, but when are you going to squeeze a piece of plastic handle to death? It's not an issue but in future don't worry about the foam grips.. pick up weighted stones or don't wear gloves to workout if you want rough hands. – Ace Cabbie Jun 9 at 13:52
  • Got 0 infections in almost a year of beach fighting were we get our knuckles constantly bleeding....if you are vaccined for tetanus you are fine. – user33399 Jun 11 at 12:14
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It's fine. Something like the Captain of Crush grippers are made of metal, with a knurling like texture to the handles to increase friction (in a pinch I've used the knurling on them to file bits off a callus, that's how rough they are).

The abrasions might be causes by sharp bits of plastic that was hidden under the foam, just file them off or cut them off with a knife.

Honestly though, plastic grippers like that aren't really worth much (they're pretty much universally weak). If you want to get into crush grip practice, then get a decent gripper (I like the Captain of Crush ones I mentioned above).

If you're stuck with the plastic one, then instead of doing it for reps, do it for time. Close it, put something small (a Lego brick, piece of card, something about 5-10mm wide) between the end point of the handles where they meet, and squeeze the s**t out of it for as long as you can. (If the small thing falls out from the between the handles, you've lost pressure and the set is over).

Grip strength is supporting strength. In a real world situation, you're never going to have to repeatedly close your hand, everything is based on gripping and holding tight (hand shakes, using a screw driver, rock climbing, deadlifting, riding a bike, using a knife, etc). The things that require you to open and close your hand repeatedly are more dexterity based (playing an instrument, using a keyboard, clicking a mouse, etc).

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