Climbers need strong hands to grip tiny crimps and hang on through steep climbs. When you can’t get on the wall to improve your grip, a grip strengthener can help you train. There are all sorts of different kinds of grip strengtheners, and it can be hard to choose what will help you crush your next project. But we here at The Adventure Junkies can help you find the best grip strengthener to help you hold on through the crux of your favorite climb.
For more of our top climbing gear recommendations, check out the Best Climbing Hangboards.
Quick Answer - The Best Grip Strengtheners
- Metolius Grip Saver Plus
- Metolius Rock Rings
- Gripmaster Hand Strengthener
- DFX Sports & Fitness Sports Pro Gyro
- Keepafit Finger Exerciser
- Escape Climbing Wood Power Balls
- TheraBand FlexBar
- IronMind Captains of Crush
Comparison Table - Best Grip StrengthenerFor the best experience turn your device horizontally
|Metolius Grip Saver Plus||Squeeze & Stretch||Foam & Rubber||$$$||3.9||Read Review|
|Metolius Rock Rings||Hanging||Polyester Resin||$$||4.7||Read Review|
|Gripmaster Hand Strengthener||Squeeze||Plastic & Metal||$||4.5||Read Review|
|DFX Sports & Fitness Sports Pro Gyro||Stabilizing||Plastic & Polycarbonate||$$||3.6||Read Review|
|Keepafit Finger Exerciser||Squeeze & Stretch||Rubber||$$||4.5||Read Review|
|Escape Climbing Wood Power Balls||Hanging & Holding||Wood||$$||4.3||Read Review|
|TheraBand FlexBar||Twisting||Rubber||$$||4.6||Read Review|
|IronMind Captains of Crush||Squeeze||Aluminum & Steel||$$||4.4||Read Review|
Reviews - The Best Climbing Grip Strengtheners
Metolius Grip Saver Plus
- Material: Foam & Rubber
- Movement Type: Squeeze & Stretch
- 3 Levels of Resistance
- Works Both Flexion (Bending) and Extension (Straightening) of Fingers
- Lightweight & Portable
BEST FOR: VERSATILITY
The Metolius Grip Saver Plus not only trains the flexor muscles that strengthen your grip, but also targets the extensor muscles that provide balance in your forearm to prevent injuries. The Grip Saver works both sets of muscles through a foam ball that you squeeze and attached rubber loops that you extend with your fingers.
The Grip Saver Plus comes in a 3-pack which includes a soft, regular, and hard version, so you can train at different levels. These options make it an excellent choice for rehabbing from an injury. Although it is lightweight so you can carry it with you, the ball shape makes it too bulky to fit in a pocket.
Metolius Rock Rings
- Material: Polyester Resin
- Movement Type: Hanging
- Comes in a Set of Two So You Can Work Both Sides at Once
- Easy to Set Up & Move to Different Locations
- Has Several Different Climbing-Specific Grips From a Jug to a Flat Edge
BEST FOR: HANG TRAINING
If you want the benefits of hangboard training in a more portable package, the Metolius Rock Rings are the solution. You can hang the Rock Rings up at home or take them with you to the crag to use as a warm up. They feature a jug, a small edge, and pockets, so you can build both finger and full grip strength.
An extra benefit of the Metolius Rock Rings is that, because each one hangs independently from a single point, it allows the joints on your elbows, wrists, and shoulders to rotate in a healthy way to prevent injury.
Gripmaster Hand Strengthener
- Material: Plastic & Metal
- Movement Type: Squeeze
- Separate Levers To Train Each Finger Individually
- Comes In Different Levels Of Tension Levels
- Pocket Size To Easily Use On-the-Go
BEST FOR: FINGER STRENGTHENING
The Gripmaster Hand Strengthener is a classic grip strengthener that can target each finger individually as well as the whole hand. It works by pressing down on buttons which are spring-loaded, and it comes a variety of different tension levels. This allows you to easily see improvement and continue to challenge your grip strength.
Since you’re meant to grip it in your hand, the Gripmaster is small and portable enough to easily fit in a pocket to use on-the-go. One drawback to the Gripmaster is that it doesn’t work your antagonistic forearm muscles, so you might want to use another method to do that in order to provide balance and prevent injury.
DFX Sports & Fitness Sports Pro Gyro
- Material: Plastic & Polycarbonate
- Movement Type: Stabilizing
- Increases Blood Flow Which Helps You Warm Up
- Provides a Range of Motion Options
- Fun to Use
BEST FOR: IMPROVING DEXTERITY
The DFX Sports Pro Gyro Exerciser Hand & Arm Strengthener spins in your hand and produces up to 35 lb of rotational force. As you work to stabilize it, the muscles in your hands and forearms get a good workout. The Gyro Exerciser feels kind of like a toy, which makes it a fun way to build grip strength. It lets you use a natural range of motion to control it, and is a great way to improve dexterity and control in your hands and fingers.
However, getting the Gyro Exerciser to actually start and stay gyrating can be a bit of a challenge requires a learning curve.
Keepafit Finger Exerciser
- Material: Rubber
- Movement Type: Squeeze & Stretch
- 3 Different Resistance Levels
- Extremely Portable So You Can Have It With You All the Time
- Useful for Preventing and Recovering from Injury
BEST FOR: INJURY PREVENTION
If you want to prevent injury, the Keepafit Finger Exerciser & Hand Strengthener is the perfect grip strengthening tool. Designed specifically to target the extensor muscles, which are the opposite of the flexor muscles you use while climbing, this tool can help relieve elbow tendonitis and other overuse injuries by providing muscle balance, while the ball in the middle also lets you squeeze to target the flexor muscles and work your grip.
To use, stick your fingers through the holes in the rubber disc, then open and close your hand. Keepafit Finger Exerciser & Hand Strengthener comes in three color-coded resistance levels, so you can progress as your grip strengthens. They are small and lightweight, so you can toss these in your bag and take them to the gym or the crag.
Escape Climbing Wood Power Balls
- Material: Wood
- Movement Type: Hanging & Holding
- Allows for A Wide Variety of Exercises That Work Grip As Well As Other Muscle Groups
- Sturdy Hardware Makes It Easy & Secure To Hang Up
- Made Of Smooth High-Quality Ash Wood
BEST FOR: ADVANCED CLIMBERS
The Escape Climbing Wood Power Balls allow experienced climbers to train grip strength while also performing exercises that target other muscle groups. Simply hanging from the wooden balls works your grip and forearm strength, and by adding in pull-ups or core exercises, such as leg lifts, knee tucks, and twists, you can get a full body workout that will help you on the climbing wall as well.
The balls feature industrial grade metal hardware for installation, so you can hang them from chains, webbing, or carabiners without worrying about them falling apart when supporting your weight. Also, the balls are made of ash wood which is hard to hang onto without being hard on your hands.
- Material: Rubber
- Movement Type: Twisting
- Comes in Several Color-Coded Resistance Levels
- Ridged Texture is Easy to Grasp
- Easy to Toss in a Pack for Using On-the-Go
BEST FOR: ELBOW PAIN
Climbing can be extremely hard on the elbows, and the Theraband Flexbar helps alleviate elbow pain while also improving grip strength. Twisting and bending the bar works different muscle groups, and a variety of resistance levels allow you to progress as your grip gets stronger. Instructions are included with the Flexbar for the proper method of performing twisting exercises that specifically reduce elbow pain.
Though the Flexbar is convenient to travel with in a pack, it is bigger than some pocket-size grip strengthener options, so you probably won’t want to bring it with you everywhere.
IronMind Captains of Crush
- Material: Aluminum & Steel
- Movement Type: Squeeze
- Simple And Intuitive To Use
- 11 Strength Levels To Continue Your Progress
- Tough And Durable Metal Construction
BEST FOR: QUICK PROGRESS
The IronMind Captains of Crush Hand Grippers are a good way to quickly improve your functional grip strength. Made of high-quality, durable, metal, these Hand Grippers work like a nutcracker that you squeeze to strengthen your grip. They come in a range of 11 resistance levels (the top of which are fairly ridiculous except for professional weight lifters).
The Captains of Crush Hand Grippers can provide fast results in general grip strength, but this kind of grip strength doesn’t directly translate to climbing. However, when combined with climbing training, it will give you some improvement.
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYING A GRIP STRENGTHENER
When you’re looking to strengthen your grip, it’s important to consider what your goals are. Are you trying to specifically work your fingers or do you want to target your forearms more? Do you want to prevent injury by working opposing muscles? Rock & Ice explains why targeting antagonistic muscles can help your overall grip strength by keeping your forearms balanced. You can also complement a grip strengthener with some simple exercises from farmer carries to using a rice bucket.
A big factor in choosing a grip strengthener is where you plan to use it. If you want something you can carry in a pocket and use discreetly at your desk, a small, portable option like the Gripmaster is a good choice.
If your plan is to use your grip strengthener at home, you can try a setup like the Metolius Rock Rings or the Wood Power Balls from Escape Climbing.
Some grip strengtheners only train very specific movements and muscles, while others allow for more of a range of workouts. If you know exactly what you want to target – for instance, if you’re recovering from an injury – it makes sense to get a grip strengthener that focuses on that. Otherwise, you could benefit from choosing a grip strengthener that will work your fingers and forearms in different ways.
Working the opposite muscles from what are normally used in climbing (e.g., push vs pull).
Muscles that bend a joint inward.
Muscles that extend a joint outward.