T Nation

Adding Weight to Pullups/Chins/Dips 5x5


#1

I am on reg park 5X5 (very similer to Starting strength) adding weight each workout to barbell exercises is easy but exercises like weighted chin ups, pull ups and dips are very hard as i struggle to add weight each workout soo any ideas.

I was thinking of 3 x 5 (on dips, chins and pull ups only)but adding extra reps each workout until i get to 15 then add weight and do the same again but i dunno.

My goals are to be very big and strong.


#2

It depends how many BW chins / dips you can do (i.e. how strong you are), and also how many times per week you’re doing these lifts.

Just doing 3 sets of AMRAP (as many reps as possible) with bodyweight, going close to failure but not actually failing mid-rep, works well for beginners.

Alternatively, you could do 3-6 sets at bodyweight below failure over the course of the workout, the goal being to accumulate volume (e.g. if you can do 12 good pullups, you could do 6 sets of 6-8 reps). Or add weight and try to do sets across – e.g. add 10lbs and do 3x5 or 5x5, then add 5 lbs next workout and keep reps constant. Or ramp up to a top all out weighted set – e.g. BWx6, +25x6, +45x6, +60xAMAP.

You can also cycle through these various approaches over the course of multiple workouts.


#3

I personally got better at chin ups by doing like 30-40% of my reps between every set of pushing exercise like bench, db press etc.
I never included it in my program as a written component, but just thought of it as the natural thing to do between sets, like breathing you know?

even if its only two or three chin ups at a time, if you have ten to twelve sets of pushing exercises that’s an easy extra 20-30 chins you know?
If you make it a habit, instead of part of the program, it will eventually become second nature. If you think about it, what’s easier and has more volume, 3x5 in sequential sets, or 12 sets of 2 throughout a workout? The lower reps longer period of working time will let you get a better movement through the chin, and probably keep your form a lot better too.
Then again this is only what worked for me, and I’m only basing it on my experiences and not scientific research


#4

[quote]kleinhound wrote:
I personally got better at chin ups by doing like 30-40% of my reps between every set of pushing exercise like bench, db press etc.
I never included it in my program as a written component, but just thought of it as the natural thing to do between sets, like breathing you know?

even if its only two or three chin ups at a time, if you have ten to twelve sets of pushing exercises that’s an easy extra 20-30 chins you know?
If you make it a habit, instead of part of the program, it will eventually become second nature. If you think about it, what’s easier and has more volume, 3x5 in sequential sets, or 12 sets of 2 throughout a workout? The lower reps longer period of working time will let you get a better movement through the chin, and probably keep your form a lot better too.
Then again this is only what worked for me, and I’m only basing it on my experiences and not scientific research[/quote]

This is what I would do. Lots of submaximal volume has always been the best way to increase my pull-up numbers. I’d strongly recommend doing them on rings though to reduce elbow strain.


#5

[quote]dagill2 wrote:

[quote]kleinhound wrote:
I personally got better at chin ups by doing like 30-40% of my reps between every set of pushing exercise like bench, db press etc.
I never included it in my program as a written component, but just thought of it as the natural thing to do between sets, like breathing you know?

even if its only two or three chin ups at a time, if you have ten to twelve sets of pushing exercises that’s an easy extra 20-30 chins you know?
If you make it a habit, instead of part of the program, it will eventually become second nature. If you think about it, what’s easier and has more volume, 3x5 in sequential sets, or 12 sets of 2 throughout a workout? The lower reps longer period of working time will let you get a better movement through the chin, and probably keep your form a lot better too.
Then again this is only what worked for me, and I’m only basing it on my experiences and not scientific research[/quote]

This is what I would do. Lots of submaximal volume has always been the best way to increase my pull-up numbers. I’d strongly recommend doing them on rings though to reduce elbow strain.[/quote]

x3 on doing fairly gentle sets of pullups between presses


#6

[quote]craze9 wrote:
It depends how many BW chins / dips you can do (i.e. how strong you are), and also how many times per week you’re doing these lifts.

Just doing 3 sets of AMRAP (as many reps as possible) with bodyweight, going close to failure but not actually failing mid-rep, works well for beginners.

Alternatively, you could do 3-6 sets at bodyweight below failure over the course of the workout, the goal being to accumulate volume (e.g. if you can odo 12 good pullups, you could do 6 sets of 6-8 reps). Or add weight and try to do sets across – e.g. add 10lbs and do 3x5 or 5x5, then add 5 lbs next workout and keep reps constant. Or ramp up to a top all out weighted set – e.g. BWx6, +25x6, +45x6, +60xAMAP.

You can also cycle through these various approaches over the course of multiple workouts.[/quote]
I workout out 3 times a week but do dips, pull ups/chins once or twice a week…so when should i start adding weight?


#7

TC: Have you been putting on bodyweight by chance? You may find that it’s difficult to add weight to chins/dips because you are already doing so with a heavier body. Something to consider.


#8

[quote]theiceman13 wrote:

[quote]craze9 wrote:
It depends how many BW chins / dips you can do (i.e. how strong you are), and also how many times per week you’re doing these lifts.

Just doing 3 sets of AMRAP (as many reps as possible) with bodyweight, going close to failure but not actually failing mid-rep, works well for beginners.

Alternatively, you could do 3-6 sets at bodyweight below failure over the course of the workout, the goal being to accumulate volume (e.g. if you can odo 12 good pullups, you could do 6 sets of 6-8 reps). Or add weight and try to do sets across – e.g. add 10lbs and do 3x5 or 5x5, then add 5 lbs next workout and keep reps constant. Or ramp up to a top all out weighted set – e.g. BWx6, +25x6, +45x6, +60xAMAP.

You can also cycle through these various approaches over the course of multiple workouts.[/quote]
I workout out 3 times a week but do dips, pull ups/chins once or twice a week…so when should i start adding weight?[/quote]
Go by feel man, but if you can do at least 15 reps of bodyweight Chins per set then add some weight if you want. I’m a big fan of doing rest-pause type sets with weighted chins, where you go to fail with weight, then immediatelt go to fail with bodyweight


#9

[quote]dagill2 wrote:
This is what I would do. Lots of submaximal volume has always been the best way to increase my pull-up numbers. I’d strongly recommend doing them on rings though to reduce elbow strain.[/quote]

I agree it’s perhaps the best way to get better at pull-ups, but I don’t think it’s necessarily the best option for hypertrophy, especially for a beginner.


#10

[quote]theiceman13 wrote:

[quote]craze9 wrote:
It depends how many BW chins / dips you can do (i.e. how strong you are), and also how many times per week you’re doing these lifts.

Just doing 3 sets of AMRAP (as many reps as possible) with bodyweight, going close to failure but not actually failing mid-rep, works well for beginners.

Alternatively, you could do 3-6 sets at bodyweight below failure over the course of the workout, the goal being to accumulate volume (e.g. if you can odo 12 good pullups, you could do 6 sets of 6-8 reps). Or add weight and try to do sets across – e.g. add 10lbs and do 3x5 or 5x5, then add 5 lbs next workout and keep reps constant. Or ramp up to a top all out weighted set – e.g. BWx6, +25x6, +45x6, +60xAMAP.

You can also cycle through these various approaches over the course of multiple workouts.[/quote]
I workout out 3 times a week but do dips, pull ups/chins once or twice a week…so when should i start adding weight?[/quote]

How many bodyweight pullups/dips can you do in one max set?