I HAVE to do it and I hate doing so. Why bother? Every day we are getting new members to our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training family and it is easy to forget they don’t know what some of you who have been following us for the past ten years may know inside out. The Ultimate Sandbag itself.
I don’t like talking about it because I guess I wish that people would trust us that in ten years of innovating and evolving the Ultimate Sandbag we would always be making sure it was the best for their fitness it could possible be!
People many times have a lot of questions about why the Ultimate Sandbag is such a unique tool. I mean after all, didn’t we just stick handles on a sandbag? How hard can that be?!
Of course I’m kidding. Simply slapping on some handles doesn’t make the Ultimate Sandbag really anything special. It is why and how we did so that makes it super powerful. That is why I am going to cover some of the BIGGEST misconceptions of the Ultimate Sandbag.
Misconception 1: It Is Just A Bunch Of Handles
Okay, I brought it up so let’s talk about the elephant in the room. I know, you see other bags now with handles, so what’s the big deal?! Um, for one where the handles go are actually VERY important! The clean (or neutral grip) handles were spaced so that the average person could clean to their fists (with Strengths and Burly USBs) and have their hands end up almost in line with their shoulders. This is also the very same reason we do give the outside handles on smaller Ultimate Sandbags.
This is important because when you do any overhead pressing movement for the safety of your shoulders you don’t want your hands too close or too far apart. That means many times when I see other bags people clean, their fists are really inside their shoulders. You SHOULDN’T ever press from that position, it is almost a guarantee for biceps impingement and shoulder destruction.
Same if the handles are too wide. Remember a press overhead is a FULL BODY exercise, not a shoulder drill. When you press with your arms outside of your shoulders you are putting most of the stress through the shoulder which is both rough on the shoulders and makes you much weaker!
That is why instead of putting handles on our bigger Ultimate Sandbags we put gripping flaps. Now you could roll into the Ultimate Sandbag and do either thick grip training or single arm training. Single arm?! Yes, by using the rolled up sides and our handles you can perform a host of one-arm cleans, presses, rows, squats, you name it!
Couldn’t you do that with a side handle? Yea, but GRIPPING the thick grip actually facilitates a much stronger training effect in what is due to the activation of the gripping muscles, arms, and down through the shoulders and trunk. Pretty powerful stuff and really opens up even MORE options in your Ultimate Sandbag Training.
“But does it really matter which handles you use? I mean haven’t you seen people snatch sandbags with the clean (neutral grip) handles? “
Ah, the infamous, “we can, but should we?” situation. There is a difference, is it possible to snatch the Ultimate Sandbag with the wrong handles. Yes, it is possible. Is it a SURE way to screw up your wrist or shoulders, YES!
I hope you are beginning to see that just throwing handles on a sandbag isn’t anything intelligent, but why and how you do it is!
Misconception 2: Handles Ruin Your Grip!
Such statements actually make me laugh out loud. If I gave you a car that could be driven 125 mph, does that mean it CAN’T be driven 35 mph? Of course not! If I give you a car that can go to 40 you can’t drive 70 though! I like to think of our Ultimate Sandbag as the sports car of strength tools. You CAN do so many different things if you know what you are doing.
Someone recently said they were glad to use a duffel bag because there were no handles. Okay, but you just eliminated about 400 progressive exercises you can do. I mean, if you don’t care and what to keep yourself to about the same boring ten drills that is fine, but I don’t know about you, I would kinda miss 400 possible movements. BTW, I am not exaggerating on that number!
One of the big reasons we spaced the handles and designed the Ultimate Sandbag the way it is so it gave you maximal options. By having a non-abrasive exterior, you can and should use drills where you can grab directly onto the Ultimate Sandbag itself. Ever see our Press Out, Grip Curls/Rows, Arc Presses, Shouldering, Off-Set drills just to name a few? However, when you DON’T have handles you also lack progression and options.
With the choice of grabbing the handles so many different ways you actually expand the number of ways you can train your grip, so not sure if I ever really understand this argument. In fact, my favorite thing is people that wonder about their grip and ask why we don’t have handles for Shouldering?! Um, because Shouldering should NEVER use handles?!
Shouldering requires your hands and arms to become one unit and because of the movement of the weight handles would actually cause an ugly impact upon your body.
Misconception 3: There Is No Bad Form Because It Is A Sandbag
I actually stole this line from a popular fitness magazine. My mouth just about dropped! Um, how could someone say such a thing! Especially because his sentence prior to this comment was remarking about the instability of a sandbag.
If something moves, is unpredictable every rep then form is even MORE paramount! Time and time again I see often well meaning pictures and videos of people doing our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training. If you ever wonder why you aren’t seeing results, check your form!
My favorite was a very nice gentleman who came to one of our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training certifications. He had said he had been following us for two years on our blog and videos. After the course he had to say how shocked he was that he was doing things so wrong and how doing them right changed everything!
As obvious as that may sound, I realize some may see the Ultimate Sandbag as a non-threatening tool. While that is terrific, don’t confuse non-threatening with not respecting. Our techniques are complex, in-depth, and occasionally technical, but they always come with a giant reward, HUGE results! (if you want to see MORE about our DVRT educational programs click HERE)
Whether this post is brand new to you, or maybe a reminder of some important techniques, I want you to remember one of the most critical things about DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training…..We are designing equipment and programs for YOU! Nothing matters to us more than having you actually achieve those goals, or even better surpass them. The only way to do so is to arm you with the knowledge to conquer them no matter how big they seem.