What is normal key pinch grip?

What is normal key pinch grip?
What is normal key pinch grip?

What is normal key pinch grip is a common question we get as physical therapists.

Measurement of pinch strength is an important parameters to determine hand function.

Researchers often conduct studies and establish reference ranges to determine what might be considered “normal” for a specific population.

These ranges can help assess an individual’s pinch strength compared to their peers.

What is key pinch strength?

Tip, Key, and Palmar pinch are the three types of pinch strengths. Workers frequently use a combination of these pinch grips with various force levels in the workplace.

In this blog, we will discuss key pinch strength.

Key Pinch

  • A key pinch is also known as lateral pinch.
    • This type of pinch grip involves holding an object between the thumb and the side of the index finger.
    • This grip is similar to holding a key or a similar small object.
    • Key pinches are commonly used in various everyday tasks, such as picking up small items or turning keys in locks.
Average Key Pinch Strength
Average Key Pinch Strength

Interpretation of the research

Key pinch strength, which measures the force exerted by the hand and fingers, can vary widely among individuals.

Achieving an appropriate pinch grip necessitates the ability to accurately coordinate the fingers through a combination of sensation and force control.

Normal key pinch strength depends on factors such as age, gender, and overall health. Research results can vary from study to study.

Overall, key pinch strength tends to decrease with age and may differ between males and females.

Here are some general values to take out of the research.

  • Key Pinch (Lateral Pinch):
    • Normal range: 10-20 pounds of force.


Physical therapists can discuss health exercise programs for you but more specifically, we can help if you have a weak or painful grip. A systematic approach of proper testing to determine impairments, then manual therapy and muscular re-training is usually necessary to get better.

At PhysioFit of NC, we have the expert team in musculoskeletal conditions to help you to the fullest.

We provide a comprehensive treatment approach through our Grip Strength Program.  This includes manual therapy and exercises to improve finger and hand mobility and wrist stability. The primary goal of treatment is to address the underlying muscular imbalance issues and strength deficits causing impaired grip.

Don’t hesitate to contact us today so we can help you!