How to Strengthen Your Wrists for Boxing with Wrist Strengthening Exercises

There are many different muscles that help support traditional lifts and increase overall strength and power during boxing, including the muscles that control your grip strength. If you want to learn how to strengthen wrists for boxing, check out some vital information about the correlation of the hand, forearm, and rotator cuff.

How Grip Strength Helps Functional Strength and Conditioning

When you incorporate grip strength exercises into your regular routine, you’ll see a number of beneficial changes, including:

  • Improved upper body push and pull movements/strength.
  • Better shoulder stability.
  • Increased range of motion in the rotator cuff.

Your forearm strength determines much of your functional strength in the arm and shoulder, even if you don’t realize it. It acts as a support for your rotator cuff and your body uses it to limit injuries that may occur in your wrists and arms during boxing or weight training, during a bench press, overhead dumbbell press, or other upper body strengthening exercises that put pressure on your hand and wrist.

Improving your forearm strength, and learning how to strengthen your wrists for boxing, will immediately allow you to move better and work harder, as your body will recognize that the forearms and wrists are now better able to minimize any danger of injuries.

Best Grip Strength Exercises

Your grip strength is extremely important, and may provide insight to your overall health as you age. Grip strength plays a significant role in strength and conditioning exercises, especially movements like the deadlift, dumbbell farmer's carry, and rows.

One of the best grip strength exercises to increase grip and rotator cuff strength are kettlebell bottoms up press variations. They have a neurological and physical effect on the muscle activity in your shoulder, and you learn how to strengthen your wrists for boxing.


The kettlebell (KB) press activates the rotator cuff and increases a neuromuscular drive, which will give you a better grip and functional movement in the upper body, from your shoulders to your shoulders to your forearm and wrist. An advantage of this mechanism is that it provides the shoulder with anticipatory stability in the shoulder whenever you complete a task that involves a gripping activity. By manipulating an object using both the forearm and shoulder, your shoulder will be better to handle load efficiently.

Redistribute Muscle Activity of the Shoulder

Not only does gripping activate the rotator cuff, but it also decreases the activity of the anterior and middle deltoid. Most shoulder impingement patients suffer from an altered deltoid-RTC, and the KB press can help them redistribute the pressure of regular muscle activity.

Improving Stability

Irradiation helps your muscles generate more tension through the activity of the surrounding muscles. The strength of all the muscles is compounded to increase your strength and stabilize your shoulder.

Other great gripping exercises and wrist strengthening exercises include:

Reverse Curls

  1. to begin, stand in an upright position with feet spaced evenly apart.
  2. Grab a barbell with your hands facing down, toward the floor.
  3. Keep your upper arms tucked into your side while extending your forearms, so that they are straight in front of you.
  4. Maintaining that straight line, lift the barbell in front of you without untucking your arms. This will isolate the forearm muscles.
  5. Lift until you feel your biceps contract, and release. You can also do this exercise with a dumbbell.

Wrist curls

One of the best wrist strengthening exercises is wrist curls.

  • Grab a dumbbell with your left hand and sit on a bench, with your arm extended in front of you, resting on your leg. Your palm should be facing the ceiling.
  • Move your arm forward enough that the barbell is hanging over the edge of your knee enough to allow for proper wrist flexion.
  • Maintain your upper arm position and slowly curl the dumbbell upward, using only your left wrist.
  • Switch to the right arm and repeat. Alternatively, you can use a barbell and strengthen your wrists at the same time.

Rice Bucket

The rice bucket exercise is a commonly used practice with athletes trying to develop strong wrists. If you're wondering how to strengthen wrists for boxing, this unconventional approach can make a huge difference.

  1. First, get a bucket of uncooked rice. It should be deep enough to cover your hand and wrist.
  2. Have the bucket at waist height close to you for support-- your abdomen should be touching the bucket.
  3. Push your hands into the rice with your palms and forearms facing upward. Your elbow should be extended.
  4. Grab the rice and slowly rotate your close fists, so that your forearms end up facing you.
  5. Release and repeat.

This exercise will add resistance against your wrist joint, increasing strength in your forearm muscles.

Farmers Walk

The farmers walk farmers carry is a popular Strongman exercise that rapidly improves grip strength and translates well into other sports. This can be done with weight plates, a dumbbell, a kettlebell, or a farmers carry apparatus if you have access to one.

  1. Grab your dumbbells, kettlebells or whatever you're using for this exercise, one in each hand.
  2. Keep your arms extended by your side; don't be tempted to shrug.
  3. Walk while holding the heavy objects. Your goal is not to set them down or rest.
  4. Over time, you should be able to hold heavier objects and go farther without stopping.

Wrist Pain

There are many reasons why you could be experiencing wrist pain. For example, if you feel wrist pain while doing a downward-facing dog pose for a stretch, it could be because of undue pressure on under-conditioned wrists. Alternatively, it could be a sign of a deeper issue, like carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome is compression taking place in the carpal tunnel of your wrist, usually caused by repetitive motions. It occurs frequently in those who do sports or work at a computer all day.

Wrist strengthening exercises can help offset wrist pain caused by wrist injuries by strengthening the wrist and forearm muscles and improving wrist mobility. If you aren't ready to add weight to your training or have difficulty with wrist pain, start doing wrist curls with a tennis ball. Work your way up to a resistance band. In time, the downward-facing dog pose and your day-to-day experiences will no longer hurt your wrists.

If you have a history of wrist pain or if the pain doesn't dissipate, consult with a physical therapist to decide the best course of treatment.

Hook Grip

One method to improving grip strength or helping offset the effects of a weak grip is by doing the hook grip during lifting exercise. With the hook grip, you put your thumb under your fingers when gripping the bar. The thumb acts as a lock, holding the bar in place. This is often used by Olympic weightlifters due to the complexity of their movements.

In addition to using your thumb to make a hook grip, continue to use wrist-strengthening exercises and forearm exercises to improve.

Learning How to Strengthen Your Wrists for Boxing

Grip strength is functional strength; it’s the kind of strength that allows you to move efficiently and prevent injury. Want to learn more about functional strength training? Come see what Blitz Sessions are all about at Gloveworx!