In a previous article, I introduced you to the the first GripBoard Mash Monster Elite, Heath Saxton. This time I would like to introduce to you the seventh certified GripBoard Mash Monster, Rick Walker.
Rick Walker Profile
[ Q ] Could you tell us a little about your background in lifting? Age, when started lifting, why you started, what you do now as far as lifts.
Started lifting at age 12 for sports. Got into powerlifting and strength when I was 18 cause I realized I would never be a super athlete but I could be super strong! Now I train strongman, powerlifting, and weightlifting. The goal is to be a pro 230 strongman.
[ Q ] How did you get into grip training?
Watching 24 hours of WSM in 2001 got me started. Finding the GripBoard got me really going. Once I closed the #3 and met Wade Gillingham, I got really addicted and started on a tear through the grip feats.
Train your ass off. Train sick, train hurt, train tired, just TRAIN! Nothing comes easy…you have to want it. You have to be willing to go to battle and die for it. I am not a genetic freak-I get it done because I have adapted a DO-OR-DIE attitude.
Do the same and you will close it. Also-listen to everyone who has been down that road. The GripBoard is a great place to learn and grow. Zip your mouth and open your mind. Oh yeah-and SQUEEZE!
[ Q ] You are also a Certified Captain of Crush® How long did it take you from when you first started working on the grippers to closing the #3?
About 6 months. I always half assed it until Bill Piche introduced me to the KTA program. WOW! I was in shock for a week, and then 2 weeks later I demolished the #3.
[ Q ] What does your current grip routine look like?
10 sets of over crushes with the hardest filed gripper I can close. I follow that with 5 sets of 5 with an easier gripper without a set. I do this 3 times a week.
The other 3 days I do block weights. Cleans and presses, bent over rows, passing from hand to hand, around the back, etc.
[ Q ] How has your grip routine changed since you first started training your grip?
More volume now then ever before. Some people hate volume. Some people thrive off of volume. I thrive.
|View The Video Of Rick Closing The MMG
Windows Media Player (2.5 MB)
[ Q ] There seems to be a significant variation in the frequency of grip workouts among trainees even with the common goal of ultimate grip strength. Have you experimented with workout frequency and it's affect on your training?
Yes. I always come back to more is better. Is there a ceiling? For sure. You can't do 500 reps a night. Find that spot just below the ceiling and then work it. Yes-you will have days when you can't make a fist. You will also have days when you can close the Mash Monster!
[ Q ] What are your favorite grip exercises?
Block weights, grippers, plate wrist curls, and TTK.
[ Q ] What kind of starting routine would you recommend for a trainee new to grip training?
Work your whole hand. Give your self a solid year on total hand strength-pinch, crush, thick bar, bending, etc. After that, go after the goals. You have forever-the goals will still be there. Make you hand strong in whole and you will dominate in parts.
[ Q ] Who do you most admire in gripdom?
Oh man. Bill Piche for his awesome site and his MM cert!
Heath, Terminator, and Steve G. for always turning it up a notch, always demanding proof, and always sticking to their guns. Jedd for pushing me to my limit, then pushing me more.
Smitty for showing me that you have to keep working, no matter what the costs, or outcomes. It is the work that matters in the long run. Dave Morton, Big Steve, Heslep, Shrug, Gillingham, the list goes on and on!
More volume, more guts, more blood. Less screwing around.
[ Q ] What do you believe is the most difficult grip exercise?
For me-thick bar. I am horrible. That is a long term goal of mine that eludes me to this day, the Inch DB. I will get you - you son of a bitch!
[ Q ] What are some of your personal bests in grip exercises?
50-pound Blob, 3-25s, bent a grade 5 bolt, plate curled a 35-pounder, hubbed a 45. Every time I do something new I am ecstatic. I love missing, then training my ass off and coming back and smoking it! What a great feeling!
[ Q ] What do you believe is the most common mistake made by new grip trainees?
Not enough mental toughness and not staying with it long enough. For some of us, it comes slow. Embrace it, train harder, and good things will come.
[ Q ] What do you consider to be the greatest grip feats of all time?
Wade's 3-35s was awesome! Outstanding! The #4 closers, the red nail benders. Mark Henry's domination of the Inch DB.
[ Q ] Do you have any parting advice for readers?
Keep an open mind. Don't experiment for a week then claim something doesn't work. Give it time. Big Steve said it best when he said, "Grip training is like a good stew. You gotta let it simmer for a long time then one day, WHAM! You are strong!"
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