T Nation


When I do pull-ups/chin-ups I tend to naturally bring my knees forward and my butt back (hard to explain). I want to do them with better form (a straight line from head to knees) Is there a way to stop this from happening? Its not a strength issue I don’t think (I’m not using a wriggling motion to cheat myself up). Any help?

Just stop doing it.

The best way I’ve seen to correct pullup form is to stop thinking of getting your chin over the bar and start leaning your head back a little and concentrate on getting your sternum to the bar.

As with any other exercise, with practice you will learn not to tense up muscles that are not contributing to the movement. This wastes energy. However, when you are really straining with heaviest weight, you tend to scrunch things up, especially your face!

I haven’t been calling them chin-ups for years and the reason behind that is exactly your problem. It propels people to follow poor form. I’m not saying that about you, since I haven’t watched you perform the pull up. However, I do bring my sternum up to the bar - it opens up my chest/shoulder area - kinda like performing a lat pulldown to the front. Which is what you’re doing in a sense. But just pulling your bodyweight up.

Ko and I spot each other on this. And when I perform the set, I cross my feet and have them behind me - where Ko is standing and will hold onto my feet. NOT with a deathgrip, but the spotter is there as a kind reminder for me to NOT bring my knees forward.

Hold a swiss ball behind your legs.You’ll need someone to give it to you while your’e in the hanging position. Have them put it between your hams and calves with your legs bent about 90 degrees at the knees. Makes it hard to cheat. You’ll also find out if it’s a strength issue.