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Mash Monster Number 42: Matti Heiskanen.

Matti is the newest Gripboard Mash Monster. See the pics and video of his incredible feats of grip strength. Learn more about him right here.

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Name: Matti Heiskanen
Age: 39
Height: 181 cm
Weight: 92 kg
Date of Feat: 25-08-07
How Long Grip Training: About 2 years

Current Grip Training Program: Gripper training 2-3 times a week.
  • First day: heavy assistant negatives singles.

  • Second day: imtug and inverted hose clamp closes for up and last two fingers.

  • Third day: credit card closes. Also I love to pinch everything: weird objects, block weights, 1H and 2H pinching, hub lifting and one hand Leoko50kg's holdings with extra weight.

Other Training Info: I have trained in bodybuilding about 22 years, 4-5 times a week.

Other Info: Chin-up is also my favorite movement to upper back. I am competing about 1-2 times a year in Nationals chin-up competitions.

Acknowledgements: First I want to thank my family for their support my training in the gym. Sometimes it takes a lot of time and they have given me on big understanding about that. When I started gaining interest in grip training, I met Kimmo Kokko, Finnish living legend . Kimmo gave me big ideas, how training can be comprehensive. Kimmo has done "Rautakoura" competitions for more than 10 years. First time I touched the grippers was Kimmo's Rautakoura competition in Finland. Thanks for that.

Also one of the best tips I have got from Gripboard, worlds largest archive, and training. Especially thanks for all the Gripboard members, who have sent their achievements and training information to the board.

Matti Heiskanen Closing The MMG.


[ 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)?dot

    I started to train without weights, only using my bodyweight - example: chin-ups and push-ups, handwalking etc., about 30 years ago. I started weight training about 22 years ago.

[ Q ] How did you get into grip training?dot

    First time when I saw grippers it was Finnish National Chin-up competition in Lahti. There was also a FittnessExpo at the same time. There was Finnish Hand strength Legend Kimmo Kokko and Rautakoura Competition. There I first tried Ironmind Handgrippers. Of course I was hooked!

[ Q ] You are now a GripBoard Mash Monster, what would you recommend to those aspiring to close this gripper?dot

    Listen to your body and read everything about grip- and pinch training. Remember get enough recovory time. Try everything that you can imagine about hand strength. Not only grippers. Do pinchlifting and blockweight and change your programs after 3-4 months. Be patient.

    You can reach all your goals. They come little by little. Sometimes it takes time, but it doesn't matter, because it comes anyway. Good way to see what are your weakness and strongpoints is that you take a video to your attempts and training. It is very easy to see what is going wrong or right.

Enlarge Click Image To Enlarge.
Matti Heiskanen.

[ 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?dot

    Actually I'm not yet COC, but someday it comes. It took me about 1 year to close #3 gripper. First time I saw those grippers, I closed #1 easily and after 3 attempts I closed #2.

[ Q ] What does your current grip routine look like?dot

    Now I'm training 3 times a week. I do several forced attempt #4 or same level gripper. Also hoseclamp: closing up-and lower fingers. Credit card set attempts and imtug . One day I do only 10-15 singles with my goal gripper.

Enlarge Click Image To Enlarge.
Closing The MMG.

[ Q ] How has your grip routine changed since you first started training your grip?dot

    First months it was just gripping, gripping and gripping no goals at all. Now I have a program and very clear target what I want. I change my routines every 3-4 months to help with motivation and progress.

[ 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?dot

    Yes, that's a very interesting question. For me, more is better. I have trained one day in a week very hard but no succes. 3-times a week is best for me also; it includes 2-times a week pinching. It is very important to try what is best for you.

    In the early training months it is very difficult to say what is good for you, but you have to trust yourself and listen to your body. Soon you can see what the best method is for you. I have done a KTA, ( and it showed me that I can handle so much training without a problem. That's why I can train 6-times a week with many kinds of hand strength movements.

[ Q ] What are your favorite grip exercises?dot

    Grip exercise - it means heavy forced singles #4 and training with extended handle and big grippers. Also attempts with my goal gripper are my favorite. Pinch lifting with one hand and 2-handed is also number one in my list.

[ Q ] What kind of starting routine would you recommend for a trainee new to grip training?dot

    First read everything that you can get, start slowly and add to your training frequency. First 1-2 times a week and more later. Also start training pinch lifting at the same time, because it gives you a good base strength.

    Thumb strength is very important, especially when you want to close heavy grippers.

[ Q ] Who do you most admire in gripdom?dot

    There are so many people to thank. Finnish living legend Kimmo Kokko (Mr.Rautakoura), Vilho Grenfors, Teemu Ilvesniemi, Teemu Pohjola. Tommy Heslep has given me a hint what grip strength is! David Horne's massive knowledge what comes handsternght, have moved me a lot.

[ Q ] If you were to start over again with your grip training, what would you do differently?dot

    Definitely would add pinch-and blockliftting to my training and start to read everything . I tied to contact as many people as possible who knows all .

[ Q ] What do you believe is the most difficult grip exercise?dot

    For me it is block lifting.

[ Q ] What are some of your personal bests in grip exercises? dot

    I have done a negative hold #4 gripper with an extended handle. I have lifted 2Hlifting 91 kg's. One hand pinchlift 45 kg's. 5 parallel reps #3. 80 reps, #2, about 40mm opening.

[ Q ] What do you believe is the most common mistake made by new grip trainees?dot

    Doing too much too soon and it's not enough that you just do your best. Every attempt has to be beyond the range. Variation is a very important thing. Don't lock yourself to do everything same around the year.

[ Q ] What do you consider to be the greatest grip feats of all time?dot

    Closing the #4 gripper like Joy Kinney did. David Horne's 67 5kg's One hand pinch lift.

[ Q ] Do you have any parting advice for readers?dot

    Trust yourself and train hard. Listen and read every good training tips. Give every workout 110%.

    Keep in mind what your goals are and you'll get it! If you're not yet a member of Gripboard ( join it right now. There is everything that you need. Also Finnish Rautakoura is grip strength specialist place.

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