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Doing More Chin-Ups

Posted Feb 14 2010 1:08pm

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Chin-ups are one of the most fundamental exercises out there and most people are taught how to do chin-ups at a very early age and for that reason they only learn the basics… Pull your chin up and over the bar. To be fair that is correct but performing one chin-up compared to multiple chin-ups is the difference of night and day.

There are many different types of chin-ups such as:

  • Wide Grip
  • and also pull ups

Depending on the how close or far your grip is on the bar you will be using different types of muscles to perform reps.

If you are struggling to do over 5 chin-ups it is because your muscles are not strong enough to pull your weight off the ground yet. However this can be fixed;

This I recommend personally because I know it to be true. Keep doing regular chin-ups until failure (meaning you cannot do another one). Once you have hit failure you are done with that exercise, so write down and record how many you completed.

Then next time at the gym do the exact same chin-up routine until failure and after a few trips to the gym you will see that you are not only doing what you could before, but you can exceed that amount with ease.

This is possible because you are working the exact muscles your body uses to perform the exercise and after each workout your body is repairing the damaged muscle tissue and building it stronger then before. Once you can exceed 10 chin-ups then you can move ahead and try more options to getting to the next level of fitness. Here are some options to further your gains:

  1. Switch to a new type of grip or try doing “pull-ups”
  2. Add weight to the reps – either by carrying a dumbbell between your feet or wearing a weight belt and adding smaller amounts to it each time you go-to the gym.

The second option is performing exercises that build muscles all over your body working areas like your back, shoulders, biceps, triceps and more. You will want to do exercises like:

  • Sitting lat pull downs
  • Negative chin-ups (where you do the “down part” of the chin-up and not the “up” part)
  • Triceps pull downs

By doing these exercises you will find your whole body becomes stronger and you may be able to do a few  more chin-ups than before. But it may take more time and you may even lose your goal in the process.

Each option is for the individual to decide and remember to take your time and know your boundaries before working out.

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