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The Grip Strength Challenge – Medley

test of hand strength

Last week’s Grip Strength Challenge for the Wild Card Spot at Nationals was the Medley. What’s a Medley, you might ask?


medley (plural medleys)
1. (now rare, archaic) Combat, fighting; a battle. [from 14th c.]
2. A collection or mixture of miscellaneous things. [from 17th c.]

As you can see from the definitions above, the Medley is like Grip Strength Combat, testing a variety of disciplines and finding the most well-rounded Gripster.

In order to find the most well rounded Grip Athlete, last week, the Medley was used. Below is the list of feats to be attempted in the medley and the point value for each feat:

Smooth Sides Out Pinch
2-25’s – 1 point
2-35’s – 1 point
2-45’s – 2 points

Hex DB Lift
30 – 1 point
40 – 1 point
50 – 2 points

8-lb Sledge 30″ Handle

Nose Lever – 1 point
Slim Lever – 1 point
Deadlift with coin – 2 points

Grippers with Blocks

1 – 1 point
2 – 1 point
3 – 2 points

25 – 1 point
35 – 1 point
45 – 2 points
(You can add weight to a lighter plate to get the heavier plate

Towel Pull-ups
1 rep – 1 point
2 reps – 2 points
3 reps – 3 points

BW or Heavier Straddle Deadlift
1 rep – 1 points
2 reps – 2 points
3 reps – 3 points

The key to winning a medley is being well-rounded so that you can perform a variety of feats and challenges covering all disciplines. You never know what will be in a medley at an actual competition. It is also important to use your time wisely and not leave points “on the table.” One of the biggest errors is to not attempt easy lifts. Also, if you are a One Armed Bandit and can only lift things with your strong hand, you will tire out, so you have to be good with both hands.

Here are the submissions:

Mike Turpin

10 Points

Mike sent in the most humorous submission yet again this week. Bastard. I now have to use my compressed air to blow the snot out of my keyboard from those plate curls at the end. Comic genius.

Mike got the #1, Nose Lever, 25’s Pinch, 30 and 40 Hexes, 25 and 35 Hub and all three Towel Pullups! Great job. Keep working that wide pinch and your grippers and you are going to do well brother.

Scott Goguen

12 Points

Scott got the 25’s Pinch, 35’s Pinch, the 30 and 40 Hex, the 25 Hub, Nose Lever, all three Towel Pull-ups and all three BW One Hand Deads. I did not count the BB Gripper because it had to be a #1 for this challenge. First submission all year and he did a fine job!

Scott, on that Slim Lever, don’t leave any part of the handle hanging outside your hand. It makes it way harder! Looking forward to more submissions – great intensity!

Paul Tompkins

13 Points

Paul did great, getting the #1, Slim Lever, Nose Lever, 25’s, and 35’s pinch, 30, 40 and 50 Hex Lift, and the 25, 35, and 45 Hubs. Not sure if you got the #2. it looked close but I didn’t hear a click so i could not pass it. Still, a fantastic showing. Great job!

Jason Steeves – WINNER!

14 Points

Jason got the #1, #2 and came close on the #3 but I could not tell for sure so I did not pass it. He got the Slim Lever, Nose Lever, and pinched the 25’s and 35’s. He was able to lift the 30 and 40 Hex and hub the 25, 35, and 45. Plus he got all three Towel Pull-ups. Great job brother. You are qualified for Nationals. It’s time to make flight plans and get your passport ready!

This week’s feet will be a One Hand Deadlift, and I hope to have the video ready and posted on the site by tomorrow.

Thanks for all the great submissions. Looking forward to hundreds more.


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12 Responses to “The Grip Strength Challenge – Medley”

  1. Jason Steeves Says:

    Thanks Jedd, I’ll have to do a still shot on that #3 to check myself as well. I’ll shoot it off to you when I get home. Congrats to everyone else, great performances guys!

  2. Paul Tompkins Says:

    Congrats Jason!

    I really had a good time with this weeks challenge!

  3. Jason Steeves Says:

    Thanks man. Looks like I missed the #3 by a mm or less.

  4. Mike Turpin Says:

    Hulk vs warrior pic is epic! This was a fun challenge and im amped for one arm deadlift. Also jedd, started gripper training. We’ll see what happens… Maybe in a couple months ill be doing alright.

  5. Jason Steeves Says:

    @ Mike Look up Paul Knight’s video on setting grippers on YouTube. It’s very informative and will help a lot. You’ll jump a gripper level just learning how to set it.

  6. Mike Turpin Says:

    Ill check it out, my biggest issue is off the block. I fwel so weak from there. Do you typically train from open or from different set widths?

  7. Jason Steeves Says:

    Typically a parallel set. Working that range will help your crush the most. Depends what your grip goals are. Pinch, thickbar and parallel set grippers will hit your hand in many positions and the strength from pinch and thickbar will carry through to all of your crush except for that last bit. Other than that learning to set the gripper will help. If contests aren’t a goal or if you’d like to train without a set you can also apply a choker. Teemu has a good article on his blog on choker work.

  8. Daniel Reinard Says:

    Congrats Jason! Those were awesome and fun videos to watch. Great job everyone.

  9. Josh McIntyre Says:

    Great work Jay, killed it!

  10. Jason Alley Says:

    Can anyone give me some suggestions for any of the plate brands that guys are using for the hub lifts? The gym at my office is pretty well-stocked, but we only have one set of smooth-sided 25’s, 35’s, and 45’s – all the rest are either bumper or “hex” plates. While the smooth-sided plates are fine for pinching, they aren’t especially conducive to hub lifts. I’ve tried checking the brands in the various videos sent in, but I can’t ever seem to read the plates. Any suggestions?

  11. Jedd Johnson Says:


    Good question dude.

    Have you tried looking for Fitness Gear Plates? I have some of them and the hub is pretty good. Another kind that often has a decent hub is CAP plates.

    That is about all I know of right now as far as current day plates.

    All the best bro.


  12. Jason Steeves Says:

    Other than my Yorks for hubbing I’ve got Go-Mango plates that work well for it.

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