Monday, June 20, 2011

Indian Clubs: From Wood To Steel For A Fierce Grip

For centuries wrestlers of the Middle East have been known for a number of things but the two main ones are wrestling and swinging different objects. The Clubs have been a stable point for wrestlers as long as the sport and for good reason. They train the body in neither ways nor weights or bodyweight exercise can touch. Sure the athletes used some weights and almost exclusively bodyweight but the clubs give a different advantage, one a wrestler needs for stable conditioning and that’s the grip.



Have you heard of the Great Gama or WWE Hall Of Famer The Iron Sheik? These two in my opinion are the biggest names in Middle Eastern wrestling. Gama is from what is now Pakistan and the Sheik is from Iran but yet both countries carry the sport of wrestling as the major sport almost to the equivalent to what America is to Baseball. The clubs were played a big role for how they trained and wrestled. Gama is said to have wrestled in 5000 matches and never lost once. That should tell you what kind of condition and how strong he was. The most important picture of the true great one is of him holding a 80lb. club which is the representation of the world title.



The Sheik is of a totally different realm to wrestling but similar in some ways. He was once an Olympic wrestler who was once a bodyguard for the Shah Of Iran. He became a professional wrestler and was trained by Wrestling Legend Verne Gagne at his training camp in Minnesota. He went on to become of the most charismatic villains in the history of Professional wrestling and held Tag Team Championships and even the WWE Title at time or 2 and rivaled with two of some of the most popular wrestlers in history and that was Hulk Hogan & Sergeant Slaughter. He can wrestle with the best of them and a trademark challenge he made was none other then the clubs. He challenged anyone who can keep up with him swinging heavy clubs or the Middle Eastern term Jori and no one was able to keep up. Now that may have been for storyline purposes but without a doubt the clubs are no joke.



I have played around with the Jori myself and I can safely say they will kick your ass one was or another. Start out 5 min. with these things sounds easy right? Think again. Yeah you can keep swinging for a bit but your grip will start to tire and when that happens your form becomes sloppy and you will need to rest. Yet without question this will help your grip in ways you can’t imagine. Remember my post about building tendons? Well the clubs are no exception. You can get fit with these bad boys pretty quick and it doesn’t matter if they 2 lb. or 50 lb. you will get an awesome workout out of it and its fun. If a workout can’t be fun then what’s the point?



Now for those who are paying attention you will find that the clubs that I have been mentioning are mostly made of wood. What kind it’s hard to say. Nowadays you can get clubs made out of wood, rubber and steel. You can find the wooden clubs at a few places such as http://www.oldtimestrongman.com/indian_clubs.html or at http://www.indianclubs.com/. Now for the steel patented clubs you can get those at Stronger Grip ran by my bud and grip master Ryan Pitts. He’s plenty of variations for the clubs including a hybrid of Thor’s Hammer. You can use it as club swinging for training or use it in your hammer training. That to me is genius. Feel the power in your hands as you help continue a tradition for the last millennium and how you can help it grow by training these implements to how you see fit to your training.

When you swing these clubs I want you to picture for a moment as if you were back in time where you were training in the pits of Indian wrestling ring and you are warming up with clubs getting ready for battle and then you just man handle your opponent. Now are these specific to wrestlers? No they can be used for strength, flexibility, stamina, and rehab and to help gain an advantage in whatever you do. I have friends who are strongmen and they use them. It’s important we help restore time honored program that has been used as long as the culture. Put yourself into the hands of these powerful tools and become a fitness machine.

2 comments:

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Sol Black said...

Indeed! Fantastic article! I rather enjoy swinging around clubs. As an extension, I've trained some basic escrima techniques, and exchanged the rattan training sticks for steel bars. The motions are smaller, but give much of the same benefit. Good stuff, and much more of a workout that people are willing to give credit for.