Variations in Handgrip Strength Between Dominant and Nondominant Hands in Division I Female Athletes

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Proceedings of the Southeastern American College of Sports Medicine Regional Conference


Background: Body asymmetries are a common issue for coaches, athletic trainers, and athletes. Muscular asymmetries may limit athletes’ in game performance due to athletic preference and increased risk of injury. Coaches do not always have the time to perform a battery of tests, however hand grip strength has been previously associated with upper body strength.

Purpose: The purpose of the study was to determine the difference between dominant (DHG) and non-dominant (NDHG) handgrip strength in female collegiate athletes.

Methods: Sixty-five Division I collegiate females athletes (age: 18.8 ± 1.2yrs; ht: 163.1 ± 8.9cm; wt: 60.2 ± 11.0kg) performed two maximal effort handgrip strength tests with their dominant and non-dominant hands, as indicated by writing hand preference. The greater of the two trials were recorded for the DHG and NDHG. A two tailed paired samples T-test was run comparing DHG to NDHG performance.

Results: There was a statistically significant difference between DHG (14 ± 2.5 kg) and NDHG (13 ± 3 kg), p = 0.001. However, the difference between sides was relatively minimal (7% difference).

Conclusion: These results suggest that female collegiate athletes may slightly favor their dominant side during gameplay and practice. This may lead to an increased injury risk. Further testing should be done to determine if this difference is consistent throughout the body.