January 08, 2018 3 min read

Chin-Ups are one of those fundamental exercises that are often overlooked but produce tremendous results and are really a must have in every workout regime. Regular chin-ups will lead to impressive thickness and width in your back while also packing on muscles to your arms and working your core.

You Can’t Substitute Chins With Lat Pulldowns

The difference between chin-ups and lat pulldowns can be defined by the difference between closed kinetic chain exercises and open kinetic chain exercises. Basically when you do chin-ups, you are drawing your body up towards the resistance, while with lat pulldowns, you are pulling the resistance towards you. The former is more functional and recruits more muscle groups and builds thickness faster. If you have been substituting chins for lat pulldowns, you might also have realised by now that doing an impressive amount of weight on the pulldowns doesn’t mean chin-ups are any easier. The training doesn’t translate, so you have to do both. Or if you really want to pick one over the other, always go for chin-ups.  

Chin-Ups Work Your Abs

If you want a great lower abdominal workout then look no further than the old chin-up. Body-weight chin-ups activate the lower rectus abdominis and stabiliser muscles. They are more production for abdominal work than hanging leg raises or wheel roll outs. So, if you want to improve your abdominal definition and thickness then introduce more chin-ups to your workout.  

Chin-Ups Build Grip Strength

Grip strength is another often overlooked aspect of training. Have a solid grip strength will improve all of your other lifts and also provide you with everyday functional improvements. From lifting bags, moving furniture, walking your dog, carrying your kids, whatever it is – having great grip strength will make your life easier. Plus, having strong forearms looks impressive. A great way to build grip strength is by doing chin-ups. So, while someone else might be doing those barbell wrist curls to build their forearms, tackle some serious sets of chin-ups instead.  

Chin-Ups Are a Catalyst For Bicep Growth

If you struggle to put on mass in your arms, then adding chin-ups to your arm routine will help boost mass gains in your biceps, arms and back. Chin-ups are in the same category as squats and deadlifts for building thickness and mass and should be done at the beginning of a workout. Change your grip to work different areas of your arms.  

Chin-Ups Force You To Handle Your Bodyweight

One thing that should come of regular exercise and weight training is the ability to handle our own bodyweight and have a more functional physique. If you are bench pressing an impressive weight but still can’t pull up your own bodyweight on a bar then there is a serious issue with your functionality. There’s no point being strong if you can’t move, and be able to do a decent amount of chin-ups – say 12-15 – is a key to having a strong, functional physique.  

Get The Physique of a Gymnast

You can see from the physiques of professional athletes what exercises produce the most aesthetically pleasing results. Marathon runners are a good example of athletes who are incredibly fit but don’t have the most appealing physique. If you look at gymnasts, who spend a good deal of their time doing various kinds of chin-ups, you can see the impressive results chin-ups produce.   For a strong, thick and functional physique, one of the best exercises you can do is the simple chin-up. And the best part is that it’s relatively easy to find some kind of bar that you can start doing them on. If they aren’t already part of your work out then it’s time to incorporate them in a big way!

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