I always chuckle when people first try the Iron Mind hand gripper at my desk. They squeeze it and then I ask if they closed it. Then they look at it, somewhat quizzically, and then try again.

But, the Iron Mind Gripers are more than just a novelty trick. They develop really strong hands and forearms—and, done right, practically your entire body.

That’s what I love about real grippers. You put your entire body into it. You put it correctly in your hand, shift your weight, get rooted, draw up power from the ground, flex your body from the bottom to the top and bring all that strength into your hand and draw the gripper to a satisfying close.

This kind of strength comes in handy all the time. Any time you pick anything it up, it’s easier. Boxes, bags, barrels, and luggage—it doesn’t matter, it’ll be easier to pick up. Any time you use your hands for anything, you’ll realize how much strength you have. Even for seemingly impractical things like being able to press your fork against the plate hard enough to get that last leaf of lettuce, you’ll come to enjoy having more hand strength.

And the grippers are really easy to train too. The volume you need is so low. You can get great results by training 5 days per week, less than 5 grips per day.

Now, a little more on how to coordinate your muscles to squeeze a gripper. First of all, this is a focused effort. You put everything aside. I like to stand feet a little wider than shoulders width and then I turn my feet into the ground so I feel rooted. I grip the ground with my feet, then gradually pull up muscle tension into my calves, legs, butt, tuck my tail under, flex my abs, suck my shoulder into the socket and as I’m doing that I pull that suction all the way down my arm and close my hand around the gripper. While I’m building tension, I’m breathing in and as I squeeze the gripper I breathe out.

Then, I shake it off and do the other arm. Then I shake off that other arm.

That’s it. Usually I do this right before I get up from my desk and walk around. Start light, like with the trainer or even the 80 lb gripper. Work up over the course of weeks and months. Closing the #1 gripper from Iron Mind consistently will give you above average hand strength—enough to impress your neighbors and friends and make a variety of life’s tasks easier.