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Allman

Pinch Grip Standards.

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Allman

Hi, good people, I haven't been able to log onto this site for many months now. It is only when I use someone else's computer that I can.

Anyway, I do post on Nick's grip site Smart Strength.

We had the Australian Grip Championships last December and Nick of course handily won and I was a distant second. I haven't seen if the results were posted here but I couldn't find it in a search.

We used my new pinching apparatus that I made specifically for the contest and sent a duplicate block to Bruce White in Perth. Unfortunately Bruce didn't show up to the contest so that block was never used. We did use it in Sydney and both Nick and I performed lower than we achieved some 6 months earlier. I managed 125 kg and Nick did 130 kg. That is the second time Nick has eclipsed me in a pinch grip contest. I wasn't expecting more but I did lift 145 kg last year and Nick lifted 140kg in an impromtu contest in my gym a week or two earlier. We both presumed it wouldn't be long before we were both lifting 150 kg or more. That didn't happen. I dropped 135 kg on my legs during training and it put me off doing those deadlifts with skateboard tape. The heavy weights have a long way to fall if they slip out of the grip.

It is amazing that so much weight can be pinched with both hands. The block was 2 inches thick and 4 1/2 inches high. It is obvious that no comparison can be made with the block used in the Swedish contest recently where David Horne lifted something like 93 kg with two hands. So that 69 mm plate lift is not at all the same as pinching on 50.4 mm skateboard taped surfaces.

Then we have my pinch grip machine that has polished 2 inch wide stainless steel. If you lift it about 20 mm or 3/4 inch you are credited with a success. That is vastly different from deadlifting a block. The higher distance takes longer so you have to hold on more and this uses up strength. You can pull a bit more off the floor than you can raise to a standing position. I have pulled 150 kg off the floor.

Well, Joe Roark and others speculated about possible correlations between the various pinching apparatus and thought that the different events could be compared. I protested and believed that no comparisons could be made even between surfaces of the same thicknesses. That caused a bit of controversy because I posted in November 2001 that I lifted 92.5 kg in competition on my pinch grip machine. I assumed, from doing a thorough search of pinch grip sites and records, that my lift was the most than anyone had ever pinched. And I was the first person to exceed 200 pounds with one hand.

My excitement turned to dismay when most people refused to recognize my lift. Surely what was done on a machine in faraway Australia was not going to count? I was asked what I could pinch on plates. So I went to try. Nope, I couldn't pinch 2 X 45 pound Olympic plates. As a matter of fact I couldn't do 2 X 35 pounds when I tried. Thus, most observers rejected my claim for a world record and retained the unofficial record as being 65 kg or 143 pounds as done by David Horne on 2 inch wide plates in his contest in England. Heck, that is some lift and I do not claim I could match it. David requires that a lifter stand erect with the pinch apparatus before given a success.

What followed was that I assembled all manner of pinching apparatus in my engineering factory so that I could train for various lifts and compete in the announced Aussie championships and see how I went. Those contests were postponed twice and by time it was finally staged I had given up training for it. So my lift on the day wasn't at all near my best and that was a disappointment.

However, what followed after the contest was something that Joe Roark might find interesting. The lads, including Nick and excluding Arthur, had a go at pinching on my machine. They were told how to wash their hands and use the window cleaning spray to rid the plate of oil and grime. Also to dry the plate and hands thoroughly before an attempt was made. Most of the fellows failed at 40 kg or less. This was after a long grip contest so it is clear more might have been lifted had everyone been fresh. Anyway, I was surprised that Nick had a go because he really had nothing whatsoever to prove. He did make an effort because he knew I wanted to see what he could do. There were plenty of people watching so the motivation was there to do as well as we could. I also had a go to see what I could do.

I would have predicted that Nick should be able to lift at least 70 kg and perhaps more. I wouldn't have been surprised had he outlifted me that day. He had done so convincingly on the two hand pinch about 2 hours previously. Anyway, as it turned out there were 3 of us who made 50 kg. A young fellow named Ben, Nick and myself. Ben went on to do a personal best of 52.5 kg and Nick tried 55 kg for 3 attempts but didn't move it. He tried a few variations on cleaning his hands, etc., to no avail. Heck, only 3 other people have lifted that much on their first try on the machine. I went on to do 70 kg which is far below my best. Then it was time for Nick to present the trophies and interest in the pinch machine ceased.

Now, what can be concluded from this pinching? Only that events are specific and cannot be compared. Just because someone wins on skateboard tape or plates doesn't mean they will win on other surfaces of the same width. I must conclude that there is no correlation between pinching on my machine and lifting blocks off the floor.

I have no doubt whatsoever that Nick and others will do well on the machine if they practice on it. That is always what helps improve performances. You need to practice on what you will be using in competition. If my machine is the only one in the world then it cannot easily be used in competitions. That doesn't mean the lifts obtained on it are invalid. It is a pinch grip testing machine and you know instantly if you succeeded in it without needing a referee. A metal lever falls when you lift it.

Well, it took a year for me to prove but finally I can claim that my lift on the machine is a good one. It is a lot of weight. It is the most that anyone has pinched and is almost double what Nick managed on his first try. Does that make me a better pincher than Nick? No, but I out pinched him on the machine. So there you are, we really have to try to standardize our sport otherwise we won't be able to compare events or performances and there will be no world records.

Tom Black has a list of world's bests in the various grip events in the past. He doesn't credit me with doing the most in the pinch grip. I find that odd. Either I pinched what I said (there are photos and a video of that contest) or I didn't. In the past, the pinch grip record has been done on various width plates and apparatus. Bruce White did his 55 kg or 121 pounds on a 2 inch block. Then Richard Sorin surpassed that by a kg lifting 123 pounds using 2 X 45 pound plates with additional weight suspended. Others raised the mark until David did his 65 kg on 2 X 25 pound plates of 2 inches total width and a bar though the center for additional weights. Thus, there is a history of crediting anyone who pinches more weight no matter what the apparatus is. The only difference in my lift is that you do not have to stand up with the weight because you are already in an erect position. All you have to do is raise the weight stack about 20 mm. That, to me, is the ultimate pinch test and in truth, more can be pinched on the machine because the weak thumb isn't limiting as much as it is with free weights. That is why more can be pinched on the machine. Now, if there were more pinching machines maybe they would be used in competitions and this discussion would be unnecessary.

Anyway, I have respect for the history of our sport and I truly respect the efforts of Richard Sorin, Bruce White, David Horne, Nick McKinless and others who excell at pinching. Young Scott who easily pinches over 130 lbs on 2 X 45 pound plates is a super pincher and perhaps in a class of his own for that width.

To confuse matters more, Ironmind changed their pinching block and went from using a 2 inch block to a 3 inch thickness. The result is that the maximum most people can pinch with one hand is about 70 pounds. That is less than 1/2 of what David did and about 1/3 of what I managed on my machine. To me, this change by Ironmind is a change in the wrong direction. Oh, there are those who excell at the thicker plates but a pinch should be a pinch. We should credit all pinches on the various apparatus and consider each for its merits. It isn't fair to allow some feats while rejecting others for no good reason.

Vince Basile,

Sydney. Australia

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gazza

Vince

Hats off to you for taking the time and effort to put your theories into practise :cool

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Guest wells

I concur with your reasoning and the validity of your arguments, however many will find it difficult to accept your record. Why? Because your 'machine/device' is not known (or not well known enough) and has not widely been in use. It takes time for certain exercises and machines to be 'popularized'. After some time a standard will be set and you'll be credited but until that time you need to be patient and continue training hard, knowing that you performed a record. When it comes down to it, that is all that matters. How you feel about yourself should not be effected be how others interpret your pinching feats. Be your own strongman and walk on. The walk is what actually matters not the talk. Good luck with your training.

Edited by wells

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David Horne

Wells,

Very good retort.

Vince,

Some very good points. Undoubtably you are the best on your machine. Possibly, if more people tried your apparatus then lifts may get close to your record, who knows? I have to admit that I hate having to wash my hands to pinch lift, so this puts your apparatus and IronMinds new blockbuster into these catagories. We used the blockbuster for training for a few weeks, and we all quickly realised that the 'perfectly' cleaned hands lifted more, but if they weren't perfect no-go! So you had this ridiculous situation of everyone going to my kitchen between attempts and scrubbing up! I thought then that I would never have this in a contest as the day would last forever! I am writing an article on all the variances in pinch lifting, there are a lot, and as you said they cannot be compared. So don't compare. The only comparism comes when a group of competitors use the same apparatus on the same day.

Anyway, have fun, and train on a variety, like I do.

David

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mobsterone

Hi Vince. All nice and good but why present the evidence at all? Cos, as per my line under the postings 'you wont let it lie'. People occasionally disagree - deal with it and move on. In the mean time have fun using your machine.

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Tom of Iowa2

Interesting post.Finally Someone who:

A.doesn't own their own computer(and borrows someone elses)

B.Rambles on

C.has some 'different'theories

Rock on Dude :rock

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Allman

I enjoyed reading the replies. Yes, events are surely different. David is right about washing up taking more time. It doesn't matter if all you are running is a pinch grip contest but makes for a longer day if you are doing other things. With a bunch of people competing they get ready while others are having their attempts so it does move along okay. It really doesn't matter too much what has to be done to assist the grip but I like the idea of using no grip aids. Like so many things in life skill is often part science and part art!

I agree that lifts are hardly likely to be accepted if done on apparatus unknown to everyone. However, Nick and Arthur did have a go on the stainless steel. So did the lads who competed in the Aussie championhips. So there are many who have had a go. I have no doubt that David would love the machine if he could train on it. Once the lifts go up it becomes more satisfying.

I agree that good grip men welcome all manner of competitions and events and look forward to competing with others.

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