Here is Mash Monster Number 36 David Juma.
Name: David Juma
Height: 6' 0"
Weight: 230 lb
Date of Feat: 2-21-2007
Witness: Mike Caruso
How Long Grip Training: Seriously for about 18 months
Current Grip Training Program: None
Other Training Info: Strongman and Power Lifting
Other Info: full time student, part time research assistant
Acknowledgements: My family Marie, Alexandra, and Benjamin for putting up with me spending my nights away at the gym. My training partners Mike Caruso, Darin Heltemes, Matt Brouse, James Deffinbaugh, and Reese Olson for putting up with me while I'm at the gym, especially Mike for getting me into grip training, and Darin for putting up with our constant verbal abuse.
[ 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)?
I started powerlifting seriously in February 2004 at age 26, before that nothing really. In July 2005 I hit my current contest bests of 435 Bench and 615 Deadlift at 214 BW. September 2005 I met my current training partner Mike Caruso who is responsible for expanding my grip training past grippers. In January 2006 we started training for both strongman and power lifting. Currently working on the Gillingham program.
[ Q ] How did you get into grip training?
I came across an article on CoC grippers, and had to try my might. I started with the #1, and within a couple of months a friend of mine ordered a #2, and gave it to me after he realized he couldn't do much with it. After that, I was hooked.
[ Q ] You are now a GripBoard Mash Monster, what would you recommend to those aspiring to close this gripper?
Don't overtrain. Listen to your body and remember that your hands are important for just about everything you do. Most importantly, educate yourself.
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[ Q ] What does your current grip routine look like?
No set routine. I usually just do a few max sets sporadically through out the week, depending on how I feel.
[ Q ] How has your grip routine changed since you first started training your grip?
I found that for me a set routine is too much volume, and my body responds with a decrease in strength. Therefore, I don't have a set routine.
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. As stated above, high volume for me equates to decreases in strength. I find that heavy training for a few reps once or twice a week works well for me. I also don't use straps for any of my exercises if I can avoid it.
[ Q ] What are your favorite grip exercises?
Anything pinch related.
[ Q ] What kind of starting routine would you recommend for a trainee new to grip training?
Get some grippers to toughen up your hands, and do plate pinches to help build up your thumb pad. Don't forget to work your extensors too. Ripping stuff is cool, and grippers need some TLC every now and then. As for a routine, it really doesn't matter what you do as long as you are getting stronger. Don't be afraid to switch things up.
[ Q ] Who do you most admire in gripdom?
Wade Gillingham, the King of pinch, and in my opinion the greatest advocate of our sport (Grip Gauntlet).
[ Q ] If you were to start over again with your grip training, what would you do differently?
I would have started pinch training and ripping stuff much sooner.
[ Q ] What do you believe is the most difficult grip exercise?
For me it is closing heavy grippers.
[ Q ] What are some of your personal bests in grip exercises?
I have closed my #3 for 6 reps with my right and 2 with left, deadlifted the blob with both hands, hub lifted 45's with both hands, plate pinched 2 45's, V-bar 365, Double overhand dead lifted 500 oly bar and 375 on the axle, quartered several license plates, ripped a 3" book (PAW not phone book), and pinched 5 10's to name a few.
[ Q ] What do you believe is the most common mistake made by new grip trainees?
Blindly following the advice of others without thinking and making decisions for themselves.
[ Q ] What do you consider to be the greatest grip feats of all time?
Hula with 45's, picking the Millennium dumbbell, closing a #4, pulling 500+ on the axle.
[ Q ] Do you have any parting advice for readers?
A friend will help you move. A good friend will help you move a body. Appreciate your brothers in iron! If you want to learn about grip strength, visit the gripboard at www.gripboard.com!