Making Sense of The Chin-Up/Pull-Up

The chin-up is like the holy grail of body weight exercises. Not many people can do them, everyone wants to be able to perform them (those that train that is), and finding individuals that can execute them correctly, well, the search continues……

Well hopefully after today, no longer will you be searching for the answer. Like most things in the training world, if the mechanics are working correctly, in theory, your body should be able perform any movement using the targeted muscles. And this is where we bring it right back down to the set-up.

You need to be in the correct starting position before you even think about moving any weight.

Not only do you need to think about the start, you should also be focusing on the finish position. How good was the movement to get you into that position? And what does the finishing position look like?

Think of it this way, if you don’t start in the correct position, how do you think the middle, and end positions are going to look? Ok, you might correct yourself as you work through the exercise, but by doing so, you are  teaching your body poor motor control/movement patterns. Eventually, this is when we start to get problems with joints, tendons, ligaments, all leading to injury.

Takeaway points from today’s video:

  • Make sure your starting position is correct
  • Engage the working muscle/s to initiate the movement
  • Make sure your finish position is correct
  • Keep chin tucked, and don’t reach to get chin over the bar
  • Regress the exercise if it’s too hard
  • Address any motor control, or mobility issues

Body weight training doesn’t get any harder than the chin-up. Don’t even think about adding any external load, until you can complete at least 5 FULL, proper form CHIN/PULL-UPS.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post, as I will be giving you some tell tale signs to look out for, when form isn’t correct, as well how to address any mobility issues when trying to get into an overhead position.

Keep training hard, keep moving well, and let’s stay fit & healthy for a very long time to come!!



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