Improve Football Catching With Hand Strengthening Exercises

Building hand strength could be the one thing that takes you from a good wide receiver to a great one. Check out these tough football hand strength exercises.

Football is played with the hands. For a wide receiver, running back, tight end or defensive back, strong hands make it easier to catch and control the ball. Strong hands can be the difference between good and great receivers.

There are more than 30 different muscles in the hand and forearm. Although most of them are tiny compared to the muscles you typically train, focusing on them during your workout will yield great benefits when you're fighting for position with an opponent.

Perform this hand strength routine two or three times per week during your upper-body workouts for a total of six weeks. For even more hand-strengthening exercises, check out these seven grueling grip-training exercises.

Hand Strengthening Exercises

Hand Gripper (heavy-duty hand grippers work best)

  • Squeeze hand-gripper handles together until handles touch
  • Hold for one second
  • Slowly release to open hand gripper
  • Repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 1-3x10-20 each hand

Hand Gripper

Dumbbell Hammer Curl

  • Hold dumbbells at sides with palms facing in and thumbs up
  • Flexing the elbows, curl dumbbells to shoulders, keeping palms facing in and thumbs up through whole motion
  • Maintaining control, lower dumbbells back to side of the body
  • Repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 1-3x10-15

Hammer Curl

Reverse Curl

  • Grip EZ curl bar on outside grip, with palms open and facing up and toward you
  • Hold in front of body with arms straight but not locked
  • Without changing elbow position, flex arms and curl bar to chest/shoulder position
  • Lower with control until arms are straight
  • Repeat for desired reps

Sets/Reps: 1-3x10-15

Reverse Curl

Wrist Roller (use different shapes and sizes to add variety)

  • Assume athletic stance holding wrist roller directly in front with arms at shoulder level
  • Roll wrists forward to wind weight up to roller
  • Roll wrist backward to unwind weight to start position

Sets/Reps: 1-3x3-5


Wrist Roller

Finger Walking

  • Hold a four- to six-pound sledgehammer between fingers with sledgehammer head towards ground
  • Move pinky and ring fingers further down sledgehammer with middle and index fingers in same position
  • Move middle and index fingers down sledgehammer to join pinky and ring fingers
  • Continue walking all the way down sledgehammer
  • Walk fingers back up sledgehammer; repeat for specified reps

Sets/Reps: 1-3x2-3

Finger Walking


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: FOOTBALL | WIDE RECEIVER | WORKOUTS | RUNNING | TRAIN | DUMBBELLS | STANCE | RECEIVER | HANDLES | BODY WORKOUTS | STRENGTHENING EXERCISES