T Nation

ABBH 1 - Chin-Ups/Dips


What is the general consensus on exercises that one cannot complete given the established set/rep scheme such as dips and chin-ups? If the set/rep scheme is a 5 x 10 and you cannot complete this, would one suggest substituting this with another exercise such as doing incline press and rows instead? I would rather avoid doing the latter because I want to work on and do dips and chin-ups, but I know I won?t be able to complete enough for the set/rep scheme of the program. Would you do as many as possible or substitute?


do 10x3 on dips/chins and 5x10 on bench/rows


Chad has recommended either assisted dips and chins or substitute exercises (such as lat pulldown) to others until they attain the necessary strength. Personally, I think assisted dips and chins is your best bet if you have a good assited dip/chin machine.


Well, after 3 weeks you'd switch it up to 10x3 bench/rows and 5/10 dips/chins for another 3 weeks. So, you'd probably he'd probably have the same problem.


I had a very good experience with 10x3 pull-ups supersetted with dips.

Although I was able to do many chins, by the end of my sets my form deteriated. By using 10x3, I was able to keep much better form, and use much higher volume. If I had attempted to use 3x10 pull-ups, I probably wouldn't have gotten more than 20 pull-ups total.


You have to subsitute assisted dips and either assisted chins or reverse grip lat pulldowns.


tonight was my dip/chin w/o and fucking hell does it hurt like crazy...i got out my dips wiht the weight i wanted but was pretty fucked..will probably drop the weight a bit, since my last 4 reps of the w/o were actually done with bw.

for chins, my first 2 sets were fine, but after that i was fucked and could only get out 6,4,4 so i did some extra work on the lat pulldown with a palms facing grip.

it is certainly challenging but i look forward to it more and more :smiley:


Substitute the dips for decline bench (barbell or db)and the chins for a similar vertical pulling movement (pulldowns with palms away from body or asst chins).

I found that I fatigued towards the end of the 5x10 on upper body, so I dropped the weight to around a 15-16 rm. Initially I was using around a 14rm (60% 1RM)



Real men chin

sissies lat pull


HAHA, hows those kickbacks going?


If I can't finish the chin sets I drop and just jump back up and finish.


For dips, are yopu straight up and down and leaning slightly forward?


Its all relative to the desired rep ranges though.

If you can't get 5x10 out in a 20X0 tempo, I would suggest going to the lat pull.

If you can do the desired reps on chins, I would always go for these over pulldowns.

Real men drink beer not milk.....according to Arnie!!



Do you want to emphasize the chest or tris more?


I think you answered your own question:

I want to work on and do dips and chin-ups,

If you want to become better at Chins and Dips then do Chins and Dips! There is no reason why you should not be able to complete each set.

The key is to take enough rest between each set so that you are ready for the next set

How long do you currently rest between sets?


I used the assisted dip/pullup machine for the 5x10 on day 5 of ABHH 1. I have never felt a better upper body workout ever. My entire upper body was unimaginably sore, pumped, tight, something like I have never felt before but want to feel all the time. I loved it.


i have a similar problem, i only have access to free weights and i have a bar for chinning, just started quatro dynamo but for the 2nd day gotta do 2x25 pulldowns, i can only do about 15 chins, any ideas on a free weight excercise i could substitute for vertical pulling?


Chins with 1 or 2 feet on a chair.


if you chose a load that's too heavy/light to mash-up with the prescribed set/rep protocol, then you're not training the proper motor units as the program was designed. hence you are not doing the program.

there is an existing abbh1 thread, right after the article, that will answer this and likely every other question you'll come up with. you should try reading it.


Whenever you can't do a required set/rep just think of the angle at which you hit the muscle and your grip!

Chins: Pulldowns
Pull-ups: Pulldowns
Dips: Decline Dumbbell Bench Press (Palms facing one another)