Your grip strength is a biomarker of your biological age, the rate at which your body is actually ageing. A strong grip is a good indicator of overall muscle strength which, in turn, is connected to a healthy lifestyle, exercise and good nutrition, all of which reduce biological age. But a weak grip is associated with accelerated ageing.
A 2018 study found a connection between lower grip strength and a higher incidence of heart disease and some cancers. In older people strength of grip can be a predictor for cognitive decline and mobility issues. But the latest research is showing that men younger than 30 have significantly weaker hand grips than their counterparts did in 1985.
We all want to look younger and feel more energetic and empowered, and grip strength exercises is a good entry point. If you get the right mindset, they open the door to health and spiritual growth. They activate your forearms, which from the Chinese medicine perspective, have some powerful acupuncture points.
These include the Pericardium channel points which strengthen the mind, calm the heart and help with anxiety and manic or reckless behaviours. There’s wrist points for the Lung channel that treat worry, grief and sadness. Points on the Heart channel treat insomnia and mental restlessness, and the Small Intestine channel ones clear the mind so you always know the right path to take.
And everyone can do these exercises with a TRX rope (or a chair). Focus on your forearms, align your wrist with your forearm and keep your body in a straight line. Imagine your body as one unit. Move from your core, extend your arms and wrist from your centre and try not to wobble. Be mindful and send your awareness to every part of your body, feel the connection and transcend into your chi. Aim for four or five sets of 10 – 15 reps. Don’t stop in between sets, keep flowing.