Are you trying to bulk up your arms? Fat Gripz is a muscle-building accessory that forces your body to increase its grip strength while you’re exercising, which helps bulk up your arms and increases the heaviest weights you can lift.
If you’re looking to add a little size to your arms, this is the product for you. Not only can you look bigger and more defined, but you can also get all the benefits of increasing your grip strength. Continue reading my full Fat Gripz review to see the good, bad, and ugly of Fat Gripz.
The Bottom Line: Fat Gripz is a fun piece of equipment you can add to your weights once in a while to improve grip strength and mix things up to increase your arm size and strength. The Fat Gripz Pro (available on Amazon) is the most popular of the three models and the one that I personally use and recommend.
Features and Benefits of Fat Gripz
The primary feature of Fat Gripz is the way they force you to use more muscle fibers while exercising, especially in the area around the elbow flexors. In everyday terms, this means that thicker handles mean more muscular arms and better exercise.
Fat Gripz is also compatible with many exercise products, ranging from axel bars to pull-up systems. They also come in several sizes, which means you can continue increasing your strength over time.
One thing the Fat Gripz notes is that you limit yourself by the weakest link in your exercise system. If you can hold 600 pounds with your back, but your hands can only grip 200 pounds, then you aren’t using 2/3 of your theoretical limit. Building grip strength with products like Fat Gripz ultimately leads to bigger arms and better performance.
Special Features of Fat Gripz
Fat Gripz is made with a particularly durable material. While they keep the exact chemical compound a secret, they’re significantly more durable than most competitors’ products, which tend to be made out of cheaper materials like silicone that tend to wear out over time.
Fat Gripz also lives up to its name by being somewhat larger than most competitors. Larger grips here mean faster and better gains, so that’s not a minor consideration.
Finally, public perception of these is hugely positive. Fat Gripz has over 10,000 positive reviews, which is more than sufficient to compensate for outliers and check their claims with a high degree of accuracy.
Drawbacks of Fat Gripz
The main drawback for Fat Gripz is that they only come with a single inside diameter of about 1.1 inches. You can wrap them around slightly thicker tools if you need to, but it’s better to ensure your grips can go entirely around the handle.
If the bars on your equipment are too thick, these won’t fit, and there won’t be any point in using them. The good news is that they’re compatible with most exercise equipment that includes bar handles, but they’re not quite universally compatible. Make sure you check your gear before you get these.
Fat Gripz Reviews
People have different experiences while exercising, so in the end, my experience is only my experience, no matter how long I spend testing a product. That’s why I went looking around for other impressions.
Patrick Duane, writing for Medium, thinks that they’re a good investment, and he likes the way they can help you build muscles with lighter weights to help ease pressure on joints. He also likes the way you can cycle between using them and not using them.
Reddit user Votearrows also likes them but points out that they’re mainly a thick bar implement, similar to getting gear with thicker axles. While they enjoy the increase in grip strength (and other users concurred), Votearrows also notes that Fat Gripz isn’t the best choice for every exercise.
Fat Gripz also includes commentary from several named users on their official website, highlighting strength coaches and trainers’ statements. I don’t overly value celebrity testimonials when they’re only from someone famous, but when top-level coaches and athletes recommend something, that’s a different story.
Does Fat Gripz Really Work?
Yes. The science behind Fat Gripz is simple and makes sense. Using thicker grips forces your body to increase its grip strength, and that, in turn, allows you to lift heavier weights and bulk up faster. The ideal size for an exercise grip will enable you to exert as much grip strength as possible without making it harder to hold the tool.
Should I Use Fat Gripz For Every Workout?
No. While they’re helpful for many workouts, you don’t necessarily want (or need) to use them for every single workout. Some exercises don’t show nearly as much benefit when using them, especially for exercises where you’re not lifting or moving things with your arms.
Does Fat Gripz Build Bigger Biceps?
Fat Gripz builds your biceps indirectly. They’re an accessory for weight-lifting, not a tool in their own right. You won’t notice improvements if you start doing bicep curls, and you’re only holding the grips without any weights attached.
Their real value lies in making it easier to hold and use other weights. Increasing your grip strength makes it easier to use more of your potential. Broadly, using heavier weights builds muscle faster, so Fat Gripz works extremely well for building biceps.
That said, using heavier weights isn’t always a good idea. Heavy exercise equipment has a fundamentally higher risk of injury than lighter gear, so some people prefer doing more repetitions with lighter gear. Similarly, spending more time exercising at a lighter pace can make it easier to enjoy music or other entertainment rather than focusing solely on the burn.
The point I want to make here is that there are often multiple routes to a goal when you’re exercising, so Fat Gripz isn’t the only practical option. On the other hand, you can still use them with lighter weights, so it’s possible to build your grip strength even if you aren’t planning to use the heaviest weights in your set.
Fat Gripz One vs. Original vs. Iron Bull Grips
The Fat Gripz One is the smallest size in the product line, next to the Original/Classic/Pro in the middle, and then the Extreme on the far end.
The Fat Gripz Pro (available on Amazon) is the most popular of the three models and the one that I personally use and recommend. When I bought my pair I got the set that came with this cool carrying case. If you have smaller hands then you should consider the Fat Gripz One (also available on Amazon).
Most people don’t need to use the Extreme size. That model is particularly for experienced bodybuilders who already have large hands with outstanding grip strength, and it’s a bad place for most people to start. Like other exercise gear, it’s better to start at a moderate level and only increase things when you’re ready to.
If you’re looking to nearly double the size of your bar, the Iron Bull Strength Grip (available on Amazon) is made for you. The ergonomic curved design offers support and a more natural grip. Top bodybuilders can use this thick bar training, and Iron Bull even offers a lifetime warranty.
However, if you’re just starting out, you’ll want to opt for the Fat Gripz One or Fat Gripz Pro and work your way up.