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Old 09-23-2014, 06:58 AM   #1
Bob Herald
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Chimp strength

This is more of a fun question/observation, but I've known several guys over the years that possess what I like to call chimp strength. I have come across many in grappling circles. Usually these guys don't look like much. Sometimes skinny, short, or chubby. Usually they never strength train. Although sometimes they have manual labor jobs, but sometimes not.

These individuals usually have crazy strength for their size. Usually a super strong grip.

Is this type of strength a function of a more developed nervous system? Some type of genetic inheritance? Anybody know someone like this?
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Old 09-23-2014, 08:44 AM   #2
Chris Mason
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Re: Chimp strength

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Originally Posted by Bob Herald View Post
This is more of a fun question/observation, but I've known several guys over the years that possess what I like to call chimp strength. I have come across many in grappling circles. Usually these guys don't look like much. Sometimes skinny, short, or chubby. Usually they never strength train. Although sometimes they have manual labor jobs, but sometimes not.

These individuals usually have crazy strength for their size. Usually a super strong grip.

Is this type of strength a function of a more developed nervous system? Some type of genetic inheritance? Anybody know someone like this?
Just individual hereditary differences. The nervous system would play a large role, but so would other factors like variances in leverage, myofibrillar makeup, etc.
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Old 10-02-2014, 08:11 AM   #3
Bob Herald
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Re: Chimp strength

Good reasoning Chris. The other think I've noticed is of all the guys I grapple with the strongest ones are always the guys that work construction, not the guys that lift weights.
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Old 10-02-2014, 08:52 AM   #4
Adam Shreim
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Re: Chimp strength

In my experiences on the boat (not that we ever rough house or wrestle on a nuclear powered submarine, ever...) the dudes that are the strongest grapplers are the dudes that either played football, wrestled or worked in construction/farming. Guys that just go to the gym and lift weights can move a lot of weight, but not people, unless they can translate that strength into power. I think weightlifters would have the most practical application of strength to grappling.
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Old 10-02-2014, 09:17 AM   #5
Shawn M Wilson
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Re: Chimp strength

I don't fear the weight junkie in a fight but the manual labor guy.

My years in judo an jujitsu showed me they had a different kind of practical strength.
They could lift things with their bodies and move them in different planes of direction vs a lifter who just moved up and down. Grip was also usually way better too
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Old 10-03-2014, 04:07 AM   #6
Bob Herald
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Re: Chimp strength

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Originally Posted by Adam Shreim View Post
In my experiences on the boat (not that we ever rough house or wrestle on a nuclear powered submarine, ever...) the dudes that are the strongest grapplers are the dudes that either played football, wrestled or worked in construction/farming. Guys that just go to the gym and lift weights can move a lot of weight, but not people, unless they can translate that strength into power. I think weightlifters would have the most practical application of strength to grappling.
Haha that should be the next reality show. Subsurface nuclear sub wrestling. I've noticed that as well my 2 toughest guys are a rugby player and construction worker. Neither if which lift weights. Both have super strong grips.
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Old 10-03-2014, 04:12 AM   #7
Bob Herald
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Re: Chimp strength

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Originally Posted by Shawn M Wilson View Post
I don't fear the weight junkie in a fight but the manual labor guy.

My years in judo an jujitsu showed me they had a different kind of practical strength.
They could lift things with their bodies and move them in different planes of direction vs a lifter who just moved up and down. Grip was also usually way better too
Yes. I've been grappling 7 years so I have a good amount of this functional strength but I've also changed my physical training to things like KB swings, TGUs, suitcase and farmers carries, pullups, muscle ups, dips. I'm sort of trying to simulate manual labor. Lol
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Old 10-03-2014, 10:24 AM   #8
Shawn M Wilson
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Re: Chimp strength

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Yes. I've been grappling 7 years so I have a good amount of this functional strength but I've also changed my physical training to things like KB swings, TGUs, suitcase and farmers carries, pullups, muscle ups, dips. I'm sort of trying to simulate manual labor. Lol
I think those plus tires and atlas stones (basic strong man) helps a ton with preparing for that kind of thing.

Best grip I have ever felt was from a 70+ year old farmer who did all his own fencing and stuff. Bout broke my hand shaking it...
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Old 10-07-2014, 05:44 AM   #9
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Re: Chimp strength

That's like old man strength plus farmer strength. Lol. So the question is, what is the best way to train the grip to get that kind of strength??? Sub maximal grip work every day would seem to be kind of what they do?
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Old 10-07-2014, 02:19 PM   #10
Shawn M Wilson
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Re: Chimp strength

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That's like old man strength plus farmer strength. Lol. So the question is, what is the best way to train the grip to get that kind of strength??? Sub maximal grip work every day would seem to be kind of what they do?
I would say yes.

Some of the best strength carry over I ever had was in high school working in fields and manual labor during the summer. I ate a ton and worked non stop. Sure the first few weeks sucked but eventually I adapted and improved.

If I did it now it would take a good 2-4 weeks for my body to adapt again (maybe more since older) but eventually it would.

Everyday he is out wrangling cattle, fixing broken fences, etc. There isn't many "easy" days by our definition. His arms aren't huge but his grip was amazing.

I think the key for anything is training it continually. So many people wuss out after 2,4,6,8,12 whatever weeks. Amazing results aren't achieved quickly but in steady and constant steps. He didn't get there in 1 year but after a lifetime of doing it.
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