Lifting a Weight vs. the Scalpel

I’ve been driving around the US and Canada for a couple of weeks and spending a lot of time listening to the satellite radio in the rental car. One of the things I like about that technology is the way they can provide hundreds of stations, each with very a specific focus.

I was listening to a station called “Doctor Radio” that is targeted to physicians and discusses issues related to medicine and running a medical practice. (I'm not an MD.) I was fascinated - and a bit shocked - to hear about people undergoing a new type of surgery that I know could be rendered avoidable by simply lifting weights with one hand.

The physicians on Doctor Radio were talking about the fact that millions of people are having facelift surgery and Botox injections to create youthful looking faces but that their hands give away their age. And I can see that is true. I’ve seen hands that don’t match the face. So new procedures are being used to inject the hands with artificial “volumizers” that replace missing muscle mass.


Rather than simply build up the muscles in the hands, people are opting for a full-blown surgical procedure that no-doubt cost thousand of dollars and comes with all the normal risks of surgery and the supporting medications. That seems like such a poor choice to me.

You know, I’ve always talked about building grip (and forearm) strength from a man’s perspective of having powerful looking forearms and how stronger grip aids in many sports and in the act of lifting weights itself. But I can see there is a cosmetic issue that cuts across gender. Why have a 30-year-old face and 60-year-old looking hands?


But grip strength (and the associated forearm muscles) are virtually forgotten in every gym I visit. I’ve seen exactly one machine for grip strength in all the gyms I’ve ever visited. It’s made by Hammer Strength and it’s a really well-built machine that accommodates plenty of weight. But you rarely see it.

As you can see, you load plates on the spindle, sit on the seat and grasp the upper and lower hand-grips, then squeeze them together. Like the other Hammer Strength equipment, it’s well manufactured and has a smooth operation. My problems with it are that you can only limit the range of motion by jury-rigging the machine and when you are fatigued you risk letting go and seriously injuring your thumbs when they get trapped behind the upper grip.




My favorite grip and forearm device is KD Industries’ JackHammer because they built it with Static Contraction training in mind. Namely, it has a massive capacity and the range of motion is adjustable to a fine degree. That means your hand and forearm muscles can be safely overloaded with hundreds of pounds of resistance in the exact range that permits you to lift your maximum.

All you have to do is watch an hour of television these days to see that drugs (and surgery) are being pushed to people to solve “problems” that in many, many cases could be solved by having a slightly healthier lifestyle that includes lifting a few weights every now and then. Static Contraction is perfect for these guys because it’s about performing two or three workouts a month that only take 5 or 10 minutes. No drugs. No scalpels. No side effects. No complications. Muscle is youth. If you want a younger looking body – including your hands – all you need to do is lift a really heavy weight for five seconds. I just wish I had $100-million to run that ad on television.

Train with your brain,


In the spirit of well-rounded self-improvement and spending fitness time wisely and efficiently, this Static Contraction article was brought to you by the Latin proverb:

Per scientiam ad salutem aegroti.
"To heal the sick through knowledge."

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