The Road to Your First Chin-up

The Rack Athletic Performance Center

Some body-weight exercises can be done by nearly anyone except for a chin-up. The chin-up is king to all upper body movements. The act of lifting your entire body up by your arms is not as easy as many think. Here are some tips for completing your first official chin-up.

Lose Weight

As harsh as it sounds. The simplest way to complete a chin-up is to reduce your body fat. The less you weigh the easier it is to perform. 

Start with Eccentrics

Start at the top of a chin-up by using a box or jumping. Then control the movement down going as slow as you can. The goal is to lower yourself down for 30 seconds. Usually, if you can do this you can perform 1 chin-up. If you can’t do a 30 second eccentric, try doing 2-3 reps of 10-second eccentrics and build your way up. 

Use Pauses

Again start at the top of the chin up. Then perform 3 pauses at random spots for 8 seconds each. Perform 2-3 reps. This is another great way to build the chin-up.

Train the Biceps and Upper Back

Use accessory work to build up bicep strength and upper back strength. These are the main muscles that assist in performing a chin-up. If you can train these muscle groups with different variations it will be an overall benefit for the chin up.

Train Grip Strength

The stronger your grip the easier a chin-up will be. The reason is that if you can squeeze the bar super tight it will allow for greater muscle recruitment. There are many ways to train your grip but never neglect it because your grip plays a big role.

Performing a chin-up should be a goal for everyone. This is the ultimate upper body test. Furthermore, it is self-satisfying once completed. If you have any questions about chin-ups please contact us.

Jermaine Hough Jr.
MS

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