Training Tips For More Chin Ups


Chin-ups are one of the best overall muscle and strength building exercises available. When bodybuilding was at it's peak, performing a set of 15-20 strict body-weight chin-ups was a cornerstone of many trainees’ programs.

Nowadays, most fitness enthusiasts top-out at around 5-8 repetitions and favor pull-downs or row variations ahead of chin-ups! Although these movements are useful, they don't hold a candle to the effectiveness of a properly performed chin-up. Exercises such as chin-ups and pushups fall into the category of compound movements. These exercises move your body through space, building a much greater neural drive.

To build a bulletproof upper body, try implementing these ten tips and watch your chin-up numbers soar!

Improve Your Body Composition –

It's no surprise that excess body fat will hinder your ability to excel with chin-ups. Work to get leaner and your chin-ups will improve.

Correct Set Up – 

Majority of people start a chin-up from a dead-hang position with their shoulders touching their ears. This is a very poor position to pull from! Correct set-up requires you to grip the bar, pull the shoulder blades down and lock your shoulders into their sockets. Proper form will place the stress on the muscles, rather than the ligaments and tendons.

Constantly Change Grips – 

Mix up your hand positioning every 1-3 workouts to avoid plateaus and staleness.

Engage The Lats – 

Be sure to not just pull with your biceps, this causes fatigue quickly. When pulling, drive your elbows down and back to fully activate your lats!

Utilize a Variety of Reps – 

Make sure you’re not performing max reps every time in the gym. Vary between high and low reps, sometimes adding weight and other times just bodyweight.

Strengthen Your Grip – 

Increasing your hand and forearm strength goes a long way towards making chin-ups easier. Using tools such as; fat bars, Fat Gripz, Globe Grips and plate pinches will quickly build grip strength!

Post-Exhaustion Routine – 

The quickest way to induce muscular growth is to create a high amount of mechanical damage. A post-exhaustion routine will force the body to super-compensate with protein synthesis, building your muscles bigger and stronger! A good example would be to do 6-12 chin ups, followed by 15-20 lat pull-downs.

Long Duration Eccentrics – 

Your body fatigues concentrically (raising up) before it does eccentrically (lowering). Also, you can create more mechanical damage with the eccentric phase then the concentric phase of the lift. On your last rep, try lowering your body over the course of 30 seconds.

Do More Curls – 

“You’re only as strong as your weakest link.” This saying holds true with exercising. Lay-off the chin-ups for 4-6 weeks and perform an intense direct biceps phase. Increasing your biceps size and strength will improve the strength at the bottom with chin-ups.

Aim – 

Focusing on always getting your chin over the bar breaks down your form over time. As a result, it's more efficient to tilt back slightly at the bottom, aiming your sternum towards the bar. This will set your back better and allow you to hold proper form throughout the movement!