If you want to build the best physique possible, then consider incorporating the chin-up into your training routine. This challenging bodyweight exercise will work more muscles than machines are able to, especially because it's a closed kinetic chain exercise. Additionally, it helps your body release a larger amount of growth hormones and testosterone. Chin-ups are great for your abs, core strength, bicep growth, grip strength and upper back strengthening. Not to mention, it forces you to handle your own bodyweight, which is vital for athletic success!
This exercise is particularly great for back building and strengthening. While the exercise targets your Latissimus Dorsi and your other back muscles, it recruits a number of other muscles, like your posterior delts, shoulders, chest, triceps, biceps, lower and middle traps. Getting stronger lats, shoulders and arms will not only help you with your athletic endeavors, but it will also make your day to day activities better and easier. Additionally, chin-ups will elevate your basal metabolic rate, stamina and help your body protect itself against overuse injuries.
If you are new to this exercise, you might find it difficult to perform a full set, but you can modify this exercise in order to help you get stronger and better at it. If you are a beginner, consider asking someone to assist you and lightly hold your lower body, as your body starts to adapt to this exercise, until you can do it on your own.
It's a great, versatile exercise, so once you're able to do it on your own, you can take it to the next level and challenge your body further. Using minimal equipment, you can hold a weight in between your ankles, a chain around your waist or a weighted vest to help you get even stronger. This will help you further with your lifts and overall quality of life!
How To Do the Chin-Up
Use a shoulder-width or slightly narrower underhand grip. The narrower the grip, the more you will work your biceps. Just make sure that you don't use a very wide pull grip because that limits the range of motion and can cause shoulder injuries. This exercises puts your biceps in a stronger line of pull and uses your shoulder extension to target and work your back muscles. But remember that chin-ups hit the biceps harder than pull-ups.
- Step up and grasp the bar with an underhand, shoulder-width grip.
- Pull your body up until your elbows are to your sides.
- Lower your body until you arms and shoulders are fully extended.
If you are a beginner, you can use a machine, a partner to assist you, or you can assist yourself by placing your feet on a bench. If you want to increase the difficulty of the exercise, you can add weight, by putting a chain around your waist, or hold a dumbbell in between your ankles.
How To Boost Your Chin-Up
If you've already master the unassisted chin-up, it's time to take this exercise to the next level in order to take your training further and boost your performance. After you warm-up, add some weight to your dip belt and do 5 reps of unassisted chin-ups. Rest for a minute and just a little bit more weight for your next set. Your second set will have 4 reps. Add a little bit more weight and do 3 reps, then more weight and do only 2 reps.
See where this is going? For your last set, you'll do only one rep with weight that makes it difficult for you to perform the single rep. After you're done, do two sets of unweighted, bodyweight only chin-ups for as many reps as you can. For your last single-rep, increase the weight each week, and increase the number of reps of the following couple of sets that you perform with just your bodyweight.
- 1 set x 5 reps - weighted chin-up
- 1 set x 4 reps - weighted chin-up (with a little bit of added weight)
- 1 set x 3 reps - weighted chin-up (with a little more bit added weight)
- 1 set x 2 reps - weighted chin-up (with even more added weight)
- 1 set x 1 rep - heavy-weighted chin-up
- 2 sets x 8-10 reps - bodyweight chin-up
This is a great exercise to help you build more strength and grow bigger muscles. If you want to boost your athletic performance, then this is the right exercise for you to incorporate in your training routine. It is versatile, requires minimum equipment and it will help strengthen your back, your grip and hit your biceps hard, for muscles worthy of a warrior.
The greatest thing about it is that it is so versatile and work with progressive overload. You can begin assisted if you’ve never attempted it before, and over time, you can start adding weight to it, for even greater results. Remember, if you can’t make it at your first try – try again, even if you need assistance. Practice makes perfect, so keep going until you reach your goals!