I’m sure you’ve heard it before.
“Chin ups = king of the upper body movements”
‘THE BEST EXERCISE for lat development”
“Essential for any fat loss program”
The list goes on!
But first, you must ask yourself the question…… Can you actually complete a full chin up?
At PPT, it’s a weekly occurrence that we have new or existing clients make the goal of achieving their first chin up. Through this experience, we’ve researched and developed successful training systems that get the job done!
When aiming to get to your first chin up, we find the best approach is to step back and assess what your biggest limiting factors are. Once you know this, the rest is a matter of smart programming to make your weak points STRONG!
Here’s one of our clients, Sarah Ible, completing 3 reps at bodyweight plus an additional 6kgs (with an added eccentric rep at the end)
Here’s a look at 3 common weak points/limitations you may need to address on your road to chin ups!
1. DROP SOME FAT
Although this might seem ridiculously obvious to some, dropping a few kilograms of unwanted body weight is always a great kick-start to your chin up goals. It’s simple maths, drop 5kgs, lift 5kgs less! I’ve rarely seen individuals at higher body fat percentages get to their chin up goals without getting a little leaner first.
2. TRAIN YOUR GUNS
Training your biceps directly can be a great stimulus to improve chin up ability. Although some trainers will tell you isolation work like bicep training is a waste time, we’ve seen many people (particularly females) do well with this. But remember, 3 sets of 20 reps is not the kind of stimulus needed. Try something like this to bring on new gains in bicep strength
A1. Incline DB Curl, 45º Bench – 5 sets of 4-6R @ 50X0 tempo – Rest 90s
A2. Seated DB Hammer curl – 5 sets of 6-8R @ 50X0 – Rest 90s
3. GRIP STRENGTH
This is another big one for the female readers out there. If you don’t have the ability to simply hold your weight on the bar, you won’t be able to pull yourself above it. By spending some serious time on grip strength, and making it a priority in your training programs you’ll be sure to not only see gains in your chin-ups, but this should transfer to other lifts like deadlifts as well. The forearms have many functions. To effectively train them, at one point or another you’ll need to train forearm and grip strength.
Now get in the gym and start smashing some goals!
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