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SteveRoach
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 19 Nov 2021
Posts: 2
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2021 9:55 pm    Post subject: Beginner: tighten fist Reply with quote

Hi Guys,

I recently started at a Karate class as a beginner. When I make a fist, the smallest angle I can make between the back of my hand and my index finger is about 140'. I think this should be closer to 90'.

Is there an exercise I can do to help me make a tighter fist?

TIA

Steve
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15511
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2021 11:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to KF, steve_roach@hotmail.com; glad that you're here!!

Depends on the fist you're making. There's a regular fist and an old-fashion fist; both are effective, and serve the practitioner quite well.

Regular fist:

1) Start with your hand open and all four fingers fully extended
2) Roll your fingers so that your fingertips come to the top of your palm
3) Continue rolling your fingers until your nails dig into your palm
4) Place your thumb across your fingers between the first and second finger joints so it locks the fist tight

Repetition is the key; the more done, the easier it becomes.

One of the exercises I have my students do is that they put their index finger of the non-punching hand up against their punching hands palm while pointing, THEN follow the 4 steps above, grasping the aforementioned index finger by squeezing. This teaches the hand to close. Once you can close your hand around your index finger tightly, then repeat the 4 steps above without the use of your non-punching index finger.

Old-Fashion:

1) Start with your hand fully open and all fingers extended
2) Fold the last 3 fingers in tightly with your fingertips touching your palm like youíre making a pretend handgun
3) Fold your index finger down but Ė unlike the other fingers Ė keep it straight and pointing towards your wrist
4) Fold your thumb across your fingers to lock the fist tight

While effective, this fist takes more training so that it becomes natural.

Griping exercises that strengthen are as simple as wrapping ones hand around things like a towel or a small bar or your index finger or anything that's small enough to grab. Once the hand is trained to understand how to properly make a fist, after all, we train all of our body, that's more than half the battle.

Hope this can help you because you do want that 90 degree you were talking about, and remember to keep your fist and forearm on the same straight plane.



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ashworth
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 13 Nov 2006
Posts: 591
Location: UK
Styles: Kankoko No Ryu, shotokan, IJR Karate, Iaido, Kobudo

PostPosted: Sat Nov 20, 2021 2:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to the forum! Great to hear you have started your karate journey, I hope you continue to enjoy it.

Regarding the fist, follow what Sensei8 said and you wonít go far wrong

I used to lay all my fingers down so they are pointing to the wrist (like making a fist without tucking the fingers right in) and then with the palm of the other hand pressing against the knuckles, doesnít have to be too much pressure just enough to feel resistant.

I also used to do press ups on my fists, but I donít recommend doing that straight away, I find that helps strengthen the wrists as well, and helps you prepare for making contact with your fist. I do recommend being shown how to do press up on fists properly to ensure you donít injure yourself though
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SteveRoach
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 19 Nov 2021
Posts: 2
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sat Nov 20, 2021 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Guys,

Thanks for those tips - I'll certainly apply them.

Regards
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 29040
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Sat Nov 20, 2021 11:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like the others, I'd like to welcome you to KF! Also, welcome to your MA journey! May it be a long one!

In regards to your question in making a fist, have you discussed it with your instructor? It may be beneficial to get in-person feedback, along with what has been written here.
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