Every Finger Counts
Grip strength is a result of the interaction of the muscles that originate in the forearm and hand and insert in the hand and fingers. Any limitation in joint motion or deviation from the normal course of movement of the tendons of the fingers reduces maximal force of an individual digit.
Fingers like to work together to apply force and one finger tends to generate muscular tension in other fingers. It can be said that each digit does not act alone.
Studying normal populations and looking at contributions to overall grip strength you will find the index, long, ring and little finger contribute about 25%, 34%, 26% and 15% respectively to the total had producing force.
What is extremely interesting and applicable to coaching is that, exclusion of a finger in gripping reduces the total strength of the hand and this percent of total power lost by the exclusion of that particular digit is greater than the power it could produce when gripping with the digit.
Example: the little finger produces about 15% of the hands gripping force, but when excluded from a maximal grip test the overall grip strength is reduced by 33%. Exclusion of the little finger and the ring finger from a maximum grip reduces grip strength by 54%, which is 10% more than the force they produce in individual maximum efforts.
Once a digit is injured in sport it must be rehabilitated, it will not just return to normal strength. Remember that an individual digits’ effect on the total power of the hand is greater than its power as a single digit. Make sure you Get those digits Strong and rehabilitated.
The Pendulum Gripper