What exercises can help work up to actually doing chin-ups?

T

The Technical

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I've started to workout again a couple of days ago, and want to focus on military-styled training (calisthenics bodyweight exercises and plenty o' cardio). However, I can't even do one correct chin-up. Aside from lack of training (and actually doing them), I recognize I need to complement the workout with exercises that help me gain strength in the muscles employed in the chin-up motion. All I can think of are dips and lat-pulldowns; what exercises do you consider the most appropiate to achieve my goal?
 
Get up on a stool, get into a contracted position on the bar and slowly let yourself down, resisting on the way. You'll be doing +'s in no time...that and drop some fat...
 
The best bet would be to just do negatives..... get a chair or whatever to get yourself in the top position, then step off and try to lower yourself as slowly as possible, or keep one leg on the chair to help you push yourself back up.

Can you do pull-up (palms facing away from you)? They recruit you back muscles a little more than chins (palms towards you) which recruit biceps a little more.

Lat-pulldowns are OK if you can't do a chin up, but i would recommend against them. You don't want to get in the habit of doing inferior exercises.
 
Negatives and supported chins will do the trick. Get a buddy to hold your feet during supported chins, this will reduce the load for you.
 
rEmY said:
great link krellik. ive been using static holds and partials to help up my pullups with great gains.

Yea...static contractions are great for pulls/chins...and if you want your biceps to blow-up just move your hands close together...
 
By the way Remy i lost focus on the jamboree thing...i'm working on doing chins/pulls from a door frame edge...which i'm currently unable to do...i need to work on my grip strenght to be able to do these i think...if anyone has any suggestions on door frame pulls/chins do share...but its probably the grip...
 
nudge119 said:
Can you do pull-up (palms facing away from you)? They recruit you back muscles a little more than chins (palms towards you) which recruit biceps a little more.

Lat-pulldowns are OK if you can't do a chin up, but i would recommend against them. You don't want to get in the habit of doing inferior exercises.

I can't do pullups at all and just one chin up. I first thought of lat-pulldowns as a way to assist in the gaining of strength until I can exclusively train in the pullups/chinups, but I see that negatives are a better. Thanks to krellik for the link, very helpful.
 
Ever since I was a little kid I could do chin ups, I can't remeber the first time that I tried one, but I know that I have always been able to do them. I think that everybody under the age of 50 should be able to do at least 1 chinup (same goes for pushups and situps), unless they are overweight or physically weak.

The first time I tried a wide arm pull up (I was about 16.5 yo) I failed. So I used a lat pulldown machine, and also did pullups, gradually widening my grip. Now I can do them fine.

Like the other guys said negatives may help. Doing chins on a lat pulldown machine should help. Some gyms have chinup assistance machines. Seeing that the main muscles trained when doing chinups are the biceps, bicep excercises may also help.
 
Rows work the upper back and strengthen it in a different plane than chins but a stronger upper back has to help eventually.
 
Try doing pulldowns with as much weight as you can, and then try to do chin ups if you need help from a spotter get it, you probably will. As well as train all other areas of your back and before you know it you will be doing chin ups with weight hanging from your waist.
 
huh, I actually used to just hang from the bar and try to pull up. After about a week I got one and then they started coming rapidly. However, thanks for the idea of static holds. Do you do the static hold in different positions? or should you just hold in the contracted postion?
 
rickdog said:
huh, I actually used to just hang from the bar and try to pull up. After about a week I got one and then they started coming rapidly. However, thanks for the idea of static holds. Do you do the static hold in different positions? or should you just hold in the contracted postion?

i usually do them in 3 positions: fully contracted, arms bent at 90 degrees, and just a bit from the bottom.
 
Interesting, thanks Remy. Just one more question, How often do you do these static positions, the end of every set or do you do them in a set by themselves? Im confused as to how they would best be utilized.
 
rickdog said:
Interesting, thanks Remy. Just one more question, How often do you do these static positions, the end of every set or do you do them in a set by themselves? Im confused as to how they would best be utilized.

this is how ive been doing them.

ill do 1 really fucking hard set, trying to best my previous number of reps at the same weight. then ill do 1 or 2 more "easy" sets, then, as my last set, ill do either static holds in the three positions i listed, a slow negative, or partial pullups.

for the static holds ill jump up to a fully contracted pullup, hold, lower to 90 degrees, hold, lower to just up from the bottom, hold.

example:
1st set: 35lbs x 18 reps
2nd set: 35lbs x 10 reps
3rd set: static holds

this has really been working phenomenally for me.
 
Thanks, im gonna give it a try. P.S 35lbs x 18 reps is incredible man. Keep up the good work.
 
rickdog said:
Thanks, im gonna give it a try. P.S 35lbs x 18 reps is incredible man. Keep up the good work.

thanks :redface:

i used to get stuck with my arms at 90 degrees and then id be done. the static holds and top half partials really fucking helped me get over this.
 
The best way to get better at chin ups is by doing chin ups
 

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