Sunday, March 31, 2013

Improving chins


I'd to increase my pull/chin-up number because they pretty much suck. I've tried incorporating them several times but ditched them due to bad progress. I see now that the reason I didnt progress was because I maxed out on my sets.

For chins it would like this

Result: 0 progress.

How would you set this up for someone with bad chinning/pull up numbers? ( Chin-ups 4-5 , Pull-ups 2, strict form ).


I've done lots of chin programming variations, and the best one I used for myself was like so.

Week 1 - 5,4,3,2,1 - 1xamap with bodyweight
Week 2 - bodyweight only 7 set of 5-7
Week 3 - Heavy lat pulldowns - 5 x 8

Now the problem here is, you have to be able to do chin ups at a decent clip in order to do this.

So what about the guy that can do 10 in 3 sets?

Here is how I would situate this....

  • The first four weeks you will chin every day
  • 6 sets of 2 for the first 2 weeks
  • The third week, do 4 sets of 2, and 2 sets of 3
  • The fourth week, do 2 sets of 2, and 4 sets of 3
At this point, switch to chinning 3X a week, but we're going to do weighted chins.  Do this for 4 weeks.

Bodyweight for 3 sets of 2 for a warm up, then 3 singles with a 10 pound weight attached.  Afterwards, 1xamap with bodyweight only.  Always try to beat this rep set.  


  1. paul is this like harry selkows pull up recommendation?

    1. No idea. I do know that Harry is known for a chin up program that works wonders.

  2. yea thats what i heard, im going to give this a go paul, but for btn wide

  3. My max is 20 pullups, but I always went to failure. Is this bad? What would you recommend as an alternative?

  4. Paul, quick question on chinning and shoulder clicking:

    I perform all my chins chest to bar and I've noticed that I get a clicking sound in the back of my right shoulder (especially towards the end of higher rep sets). I don't experience any pain with the click, but sometimes I do experience some minor shoulder pain (towards the long head bicep tendon) with pressing movements - mainly horizontal pressing movements. I'm following a pretty basic SPPC routine and I'm using kick boxing/bag work for my conditioning.

    Maybe Im over working my shoulder and just need to chill the hell out? Or maybe Im developing an imbalance?

    Any advice is much appreciated.. i realize I sound like a total tard with what I just wrote!

    1. The shoulder is pretty complex so it could be anything. However if there is no pain I wouldn't be overly concerned. You probably have some inflammation that is causing a misalignment somewhere in there, so a good anti inflammatory for a week or so might not hurt, plus some cuff work (internal and external rotation) and changing movements for a few weeks.

    2. Yeah, as far as the clicking sound goes I don't experience any pain, but shoulder pain does occur during pushing exercises from time to time. I actually remember feeling a twinge in my shoulder a little over a year ago from burpees of all things!

      Thanks for the advice though, man!

  5. First time a progression in pull-ups has made sense. Will