T Nation

Chin Up Progression

First the scenario:

19 yo female overhead, college athlete who cannot do a supinated grip chin up. No weight assisted machine available.

How do you progress her? Do you begin with eccentrics? If so, how many (sets x reps), how many seconds, and how many training days (if only training 3x’s per week).

I found an old article by Poliquin about this and was wondering what methods everyone else had used? Either with yourself or teaching someone else.

Begin discussion…

this is going to be an interesting thread, look forward to it, my 2cents:

Not getting to specific you can make use of the following

Assisted pullups
-using bands
-using ‘help’ (push her ankles up)
Lat pulldowns
Grip work
static hangs
-overload static hangs (add weight)
bent row
“fat man pullups” (inverted rows)

3 days work, I figure you’re doing full body workout you can fit something “back specific” in there.

If ALL she hopes to accomplish is a pullup you can be a LOT more specific on each day. But if she’s training to be an overall athlete then obviously her training time is minimal. So one specific back exercise(pullup) per day.

and in my experience increasing your deadlift will help your pullups (and vice versa)

If you have her doing pulldowns, make sure she keeps her forearms perpendicular to the floor, that will help mimic the pullup movement better.

As far as negatives, if she can do a couple, just have her go as slow as possible without going to failure(where she loses strength and just drops). Eventually you might change that to timed negs, but I was always told to just go as slow as possible.

Xen, how much carryover will horizontal pulling have to a vertical pull?

honestly not sure, but the “fatman” rows would get her used to handling her own bodyweight from a fixed bar.

might be more of a psychological tool than anything else.

besides getting strong doesnt hurt.

I believe on Defranco’s site he has an article about your exact question. He even lays out the progression. If you look under the “Ask Joe” section the info is in there. It may take a while to find the exact date he answered it in, but it’s there.[quote]obatiger11 wrote:
First the scenario:

19 yo female overhead, college athlete who cannot do a supinated grip chin up. No weight assisted machine available.

How do you progress her? Do you begin with eccentrics? If so, how many (sets x reps), how many seconds, and how many training days (if only training 3x’s per week).

I found an old article by Poliquin about this and was wondering what methods everyone else had used? Either with yourself or teaching someone else.

Begin discussion… [/quote]

From ‘The Poloquin Principles’…

""Using this type of progression I was able to increase the Women’s Canadian National Ski Team’s averge number of chinups from 0 to 12 in 11 weeks!

The first progression uses a spotter and starts with hanging from the chinup bar with knees bent. During the ascent, the spotter should support you by holding both ankles. If assistance is needed during this phase, you can extend the leg against the spotters base of support. Once you’re able to perform 12 repetitions in this style with minimal assistance, it’stime to move on to the next progression.

In the second progression the same starting position is used, but this time only one ankle is in the spotters hands- the extra weight of the free leg will increase the overload on the muscles. When 12 repetitions can be performed with minimal assistance, you can move n to the next level.

In the third progression the exercise is performed in the same manner, but this time the spotter will hold you at the waist. as yor strength increases, you will find that you require assistance only in certain parts of the exercise. At these parts of the movements your spotter should offer only enough assistance to help you clear the bar.

When you can perform the full range of movement with no assistance for 12 reps, you are ready to begin using additional weight."

Also, at the end of the progression, it may be useful to perform a few weeks of heavy negative chins (sloooow eccentrics) with a stool under your feet for the concentric part. Hope this helped!

Kubo

[quote]boatguy wrote:
If you have her doing pulldowns, make sure she keeps her forearms perpendicular to the floor, that will help mimic the pullup movement better.

As far as negatives, if she can do a couple, just have her go as slow as possible without going to failure(where she loses strength and just drops). Eventually you might change that to timed negs, but I was always told to just go as slow as possible.

Xen, how much carryover will horizontal pulling have to a vertical pull?[/quote]

Well, these are college female volleyball players and believe it or not some of them have never stepped foot in a wt. room. And some have never attempted a pullup. I have had them doing supinated grip pulldowns, inverted or fat man rows, wide grip lat pulldown, and other back exercises, but I really want them to start doing pullups. I am looking to prevent as many shoulder problems as possible and I know pullups is just one of many things that these girls should be doing. However, as I said some can’t even come close to doing one so that’s why I called on you guys.

I found the article Poliquin wrote for T-Nation and plan on implementing his ideas, but I was wondering if anyone else had other ideas. I like to mix and match info. to try to figure out what might work best to solve a problem.

I mean shit these are college athletes for Christ sake they should be able to damn pullups and I won’t settle for them not being able to do them.

DC

Thanks I will look into that article.

  1. CT’s method: http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=460273

  2. Ask Jillybop, she went from 0 to many herself.

I found bands very useful for when I could only do a couple of chinups. Jump stretch bands, or whatever. 4-5 sets of 6-10 a couple of times per week with progessively smaller bands until I could do 6 with no bands.