How to Get Better Results with Chin-Ups

Make this change and you’ll build bigger biceps and lats. Oh, and your joints will feel better.

Chin-ups are a classic lat and biceps builder. Rings will amplify your benefits.

Here’s Why

  1. The supinated grip draws your elbows in. This position is more joint friendly for your shoulders and hammers your lats as shoulder extensors.
  2. You get some serious mechanical tension on your biceps.
  3. Rings keeps you honest. If you start jerking and kipping, you’ll be swinging around the gym like Tarzan.
  4. Free moving handles reduce joint stress. This allows you to do more weight and more volume.


  • Take an underhand, supinated grip.
  • Keep your chest up, shoulders down, and lean back a bit. Focus on driving your elbows down as you lift.
  • Focus on squeezing your biceps as you come to the top. Extend your elbows as you come down, but don’t go limp.

Good Alternatives

Use the rotating handles that come with some high-end racks, or use the D-handles found at most gyms. All you need is a small chain and carabineer you can pick up from a hardware store.

If you have to use a fixed bar, alternate every 1-2 months between supinated and neutral (palms facing each other) grips to reduce the risk of joint problems.