How to Improve Your Grip Strength As A Powerlifter: Chalk or Straps?

When it comes to lifting weights, there are a few different ways that you can do it to make it more comfortable and easier on your body. One of those ways is by using chalk or straps. Both have advantages and disadvantages, making it hard to choose which is best for you.

This article will look at both the pros and cons of using chalk and straps when lifting weights to help you make the best decision for your needs.

Are Lifting Straps Better than Chalk?

Let’s start with chalk. Chalk is a substance that is made from limestone and gypsum. It is used to improve grip strength and prevent your hands from slipping when you are lifting weights.

This is particularly important when lifting heavier weights, as it can help keep you safe and prevent any injuries. Additionally, chalk can also help absorb sweat from your hands, making it harder for you to grip the weights correctly.

Now let’s take a look at the straps. Straps are pieces of fabric or leather that are worn around your wrists, and they are used to help you lift heavier weights. They work by providing extra support to your wrists, which can help to prevent any injuries from happening.

Straps can also help improve your grip strength, as they keep your hands in place while you are lifting.

So, which one is better? Chalk or straps? Well, it depends on your workout needs. If you are someone who lifts heavier weights, then chalk is probably the better option for you, as it can help to keep you safe and improve your grip strength.

However, if you are just starting or do not lift very heavy weights, then straps might be a better option, as they can help prevent any injuries from happening and improve your grip strength. Ultimately, it is up to your goals to decide which one is right for you.

Pros and Cons of Using Gym Chalk

Pros and Cons of Using Gym Chalk 

There are pros and cons to using gym chalk when working out. Here are some of the key points to consider:


  1. Gym chalk can help you hold the weights and equipment more securely, leading to better form and performance.
  2. It can also help reduce the amount of sweat that builds up on your hands, which can cause slippery hands and a loss of grip during your workout.


  1. Gym chalk can be messy and can leave residue on your hands and the equipment.
  2. It can also be a choking hazard if it is inhaled, so it’s important to avoid breathing in the dust particles.

Pros and Cons of Using Straps

Pros and Cons of Using Straps

When it comes to using straps for exercise, there are some pros and cons to consider. First, let’s take a look at the pros:


  1. Straps provide extra support, which can be helpful for those who are new to exercises like pull-ups or chin-ups.
  2. Straps can help you achieve a range of motion during these exercises, potentially improving muscle development.
  3. Straps can also help you achieve greater intensity during your workouts, allowing you to lift heavier weights and get stronger faster.

Now let’s have a look at the cons of using straps:


  1. Straps can be a bit cumbersome to use at first, particularly if you’re not used to them.
  2. Straps can also be a bit pricey, depending on the brand you choose.
  3. Finally, if you’re not careful, using straps can lead to weaker muscles and a reduced range of motion.

In general, straps are helpful for those looking to improve their pull-up or chin-up performance. Just make sure you use them appropriately and don’t rely on them too much; otherwise, you might end up weakening your muscles.

Deciding Between Chalk vs Straps

For powerlifters, chalk is the ideal choice since it enables you to lift the maximum weight without help. In other words, rather than depending on the aid that straps give, you may strengthen your hands and grip.

Straps, on the other hand, provide assistance, which is ideal if you want to work on muscle regions that are not restricted by your grip strength.

Straps are particularly effective when completing greater repetitions for hypertrophy or technique training. This is because we are more concerned with the duration under the stress of other muscle groups rather than grip strength during these times.

If you are a competitive powerlifter, though, you will not be able to utilize straps in competition. As a result, depending on straps for help may hinder your overall performance if you use them too often.

Best Advice For Powerlifters: Chalk vs Straps

Do Not Rely Too Much on Straps

Lifters are increasingly using straps for everything these days, even the bench press! However, one should not depend on straps too much since we need to improve our grip strength so that we can lift heavy weights without losing our grasp.

For the Majority of Your Top Sets, Use Chalk.

For the bulk of our topping sets, we recommend using chalk to train your grip and develop/maintain the physical ability to hold on to bigger weights.

As a result, you can be confident that you are receiving the required stimulation to maintain/build your grip strength when it counts the most – allowing yourself to employ straps (if necessary) during your backoff sets.

Save Your Straps For Deadlift Variations And Pulling Accessories.

Using straps for deadlift variations (snatch grip deadlift, Romanian deadlift, rack pull) or pulling accessories (rows, pulldowns) is a good idea because these variations are included in a training program to strengthen specific muscle groups and/or specific ranges of motion, not to build grip strength.

Straps Should Not Be Used For Grip Strength

When accessories are programmed to improve our grip strength or simulate everyday activities such as carrying groceries (farmers walk, suitcase carry, iso hold), it is important to use these exercises to train our grip rather than using straps and limiting the benefits of the exercise to lift heavier weights for longer.

But, if you are participating in strongman events, you should use straps since they are sport-specific; however, if you are doing these workouts for injury prevention and to correct deficiencies, you should not use straps.

Utilize Chalk First, Then Straps

We recommend that you always attempt to use chalk first and then switch to straps once the grip begins to weaken.

There is no use in employing straps if your grip is not failing or getting overly weary, but if we suffer excessive grip fatigue that affects your performance, straps make more sense.

How to Choose the Right Gym Chalk for Powerlifter

How to Choose the Right Gym Chalk for Powerlifter

Powerlifters and other athletes who require a little additional grip on their barbells or other equipment might benefit from gym chalk. However, before purchasing gym chalk, it is critical to understand how much you will need and what to look for.

If you are considering buying gym chalk, there are a few things you should think about beforehand. Here are a few things to remember:

The Grip

The gym chalk raises friction between your hands and the gym equipment, allowing you to securely hold the equipment. For powerlifters who wish to prevent injury and improve their lifting performance, this is critical.

How Often

The typical gym-goer works out for roughly an hour. You will probably only need to use your gym chalk once a day. If you prefer to work up a good sweat, you may need to re-apply your gym chalk more often.

The typical gym-goer will get two to three months out of one container of liquid gym chalk. However, the most popular sort of gym chalk is powdered chalk. It is simple to use and has a nice grip.

Thick or Thin

The thickness of the chalk is the first thing you should know when buying gym chalk. You will want to make sure you acquire the correct gym chalk for your requirements since some gym chalk is thicker than others. For powerlifting, you will need thicker chalk that stays on your hands and does not slide off quickly.

The Texture

In your hands, you do not want gym chalk that feels gritty and sandpapery. When you attempt to hold the barbell in your grip, you do not want your hands to feel like they are being torn. Look for a brand of gym chalk that has a fine texture and applies smoothly.

The Odor

The fragrance of the chalk is one factor to consider when buying gym chalk. Some brands of chalk have a strong aroma, while others have none at all. Choose a low-scent choice if you are extremely sensitive to strong fragrances.

So if you are looking for good gym chalk to assist you with your powerlifting goals, DMoose is the place to go! This gym chalk is ideal for making the most of your exercises, and it comes in a variety of sizes to suit your preferences and workout durations.

Furthermore, this gym chalk is produced of high-quality materials, assuring that it will last a long time and help you achieve your fitness goals. Place your order for gym chalk now and feel the difference!


There are two main ways that powerlifters can increase their strength: by using chalk or straps. Chalk helps powerlifters grip the barbell tightly, which allows them to generate more force. Straps assist powerlifters in keeping their wrists straight, which allows them to create greater force.

Which method is better? There is no definitive answer, as both chalk and straps have their pros and cons. Chalk is less expensive and easier to use, but it can get messy. Straps are more expensive, but they are less likely to cause skin irritation. Ultimately, it is up to the powerlifter to decide if they want to increase their grip strength using chalk or need assistance through a strap to lift heavy due to their weak grip.


  • Jukic, Ivan, et al. “Ergogenic Effects of Lifting Straps on Movement Velocity, Grip Strength, Perceived Exertion and Grip Security during the Deadlift Exercise.” Physiology & Behavior, vol. 229, Feb. 2021, p. 113283. PubMed,

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