The Kipping Pull-Up – Ultimate Guide

The kipping pull-up is a movement that has become increasingly popular in the Crossfit community. Though it may seem simple, the kipping pull-up can be quite complex and challenging to master. It should only be attempted by individuals who are experienced in strength training.

A kipping pull-up is an exercise that involves kipping or swinging your body to generate momentum and complete the pull-up. It is also one of the complete full-body movements as it targets several muscle groups, including the lats, shoulders, biceps, and core.

In this article, I will discuss the benefits of kipping pull-ups, their advantages, and how to perform them correctly. Let’s get started.

Kipping Pull-Up: Why Do CrossFitters Do Weird Pull-Ups?

Some CrossFit athletes use unconventional methods, such as kipping, to do more pull-ups with less upper-body fatigue in a shorter amount of time. Kipping pull-ups are great for building explosive power and improving your grip strength. Plus, the arms and back get a good workout if you keep your balance and stability as you lower your body.

Kipping Pull-Up: What is a Kipping Pull-Up?

A kipping pull-up is a dynamic movement that uses the momentum from your lower body and swinging to kip or “cheat” your way up to the bar.

Kipping Pull-Up: Are Kipping Pull-Ups Harder?

The kipping pull-up is a more advanced movement that requires coordination and timing to generate momentum and swing your body to the bar. This exercise is not recommended for beginners as it can be challenging to master.

It’s harder to do than a regular pull-up because kipping requires using momentum, which can be challenging to control. Additionally, kipping pull-ups place a greater emphasis on your grip strength and require you to have good shoulder mobility.

Kipping Pull-Up: Kipping Pull-Ups vs Strict Pull-Ups

As mentioned earlier, the kipping pull-up is a more dynamic movement that uses momentum, which fitness experts consider cheating your way up to the bar.

On the other hand, strict pull-ups are a more traditional exercise focusing on slow and controlled movements. It is a better exercise for developing strength and muscle size.

Kipping Pull-Up: How Do You Kip Correctly?

Kipping is a gymnastics move that uses the momentum of your lower body to generate power and swing your body up to the bar.

It’s important to kip correctly to avoid injuries. When kipping, you should use a smooth and controlled movement. It is also essential to keep your core engaged and avoid arching your back. Here are a few tips on how to kip correctly:

  • Use a smooth and controlled movement
  • Keep your core engaged
  • Avoid arching your back
  • Focus on generating power from your lower body
  • Use your momentum to swing your body up to the bar

Here’s a video to show you how to perform kipping pull-ups correctly:

Kipping Pull-Up: Are Kipping Pull-Ups Dangerous?

Kipping pull-ups can place stress on the shoulders and elbow joints. If you perform them in poor form, it can be dangerous. It is essential to warm up properly before attempting kipping pull-ups and use caution when doing this exercise.

If you are new to kipping pull-ups, start with regular pull-ups and progress to kipping when you have mastered the basic movement. It is also important to ask for the help of a personal trainer to avoid injuries such as shoulder pain and pressure.

Kipping Pull-Up: The Proper Form

Like any other exercise, proper form is essential when performing kipping pull-ups. Here are important tips for maintaining a proper form:

  • The chin should be over the bar at all times.
  • Ensure that you have a full grip on the bar.
  • Hands should be just outside the shoulder width, but start hanging with your arms extended.
  • Alternate between arched and hollow positions.
  • Pull away from the bar to initiate the descent.

How to Do a Standard Kipping Pull-Up: Step-By-Step.

Here’s how to do a standard kipping pull-up:

  1. Start standing under the bar with your arms and hands shoulder-width apart.
  2. Give yourself a small forward thrust, gripping the bar with both hands and lifting yourself with a good amount of space (at about 1.5 feet) between your head and the bar.
  3. Propel your chest forward, starting the swing with your shoulders. This will assist you in switching between arched and hollow positions. Maintain a firm core while swinging your lower body, legs squeezed together, knees lifted toward the hip area. When momentum is building, your body will resemble a banana.
  4. Your momentum is crucial as you pull yourself up toward the bar by popping your hips open. When you’re at the top of the kip, drive your chin over the bar and lock out your elbows.
  5. After getting your chin above the bar, push yourself back and away into a hollow position. Pop your chest out again immediately to relaunch that momentum for another rep.

Here’s a video to show you how to do it.

Kipping Pull-Up Variations.

Here are some pull-up variations you can practice as you try to incorporate the kipping pull-up into your exercise routine.

Chest-to-bar kipping pull-ups

These pull-ups start the same as a standard kipping pull-up, but instead of swinging your body over the bar, you will tuck your knees and bring your chest to the bar.

Toes-to-bar kipping pull-ups

Start in the same position as a standard kipping pull-up, but instead of swinging your body over the bar, you will tuck your knees to your chest and bring your toes to the bar.

Muscle-ups

A muscle-up is a kipping pull-up that starts from a dead hang position. To do a muscle-up, swing your body up and over the bar and then press your body up until your arms are extended overhead.

Kipping Pull Up: The Benefits

The benefits of a kipping pull-up include improved grip strength, increased explosive power, and less upper-body fatigue. Additionally, kipping pull-ups can help you build muscle in your arms and back. Let’s talk about each of these benefits in more detail.

Improved Grip Strength

Kipping pull-ups require a solid grip to generate momentum and kip your body up to the bar. Hence, this exercise will help improve your grip strength over time.

Increased Explosive Power

Kipping pull-ups use momentum to kip your body up to the bar, allowing you to improve your explosive power, timing, and coordination.

Less Upper-Body Fatigue

Kipping pull-ups are often used to do more reps in a shorter amount of time with less fatigue. This is because kipping pullups place less emphasis on the arms and shoulders muscles.

Build Muscle in Arms and Back

Kipping pull-ups can help you build strength and muscle size when done correctly. This exercise also targets the core, upper back, limbs, and thigh muscles.

Kipping Pull-Up: The Drawbacks

While kipping pull-ups offer many benefits, there are also some drawbacks associated with this exercise.

Greater demand on the shoulder joint.

Doing kipping pull-ups requires a lot of shoulder mobility, which can be a problem for people with shoulder pain or instability. To avoid this, warm up your shoulders before you start kipping pullups. You may begin with shoulder circles, then move on to arm swings and windmills.

Then, do a few kipping pull-ups with a slow and controlled tempo to get used to the movement. Once you’re warmed up, increase the speed and explosiveness of your kips.

High chance of injury

This is known as impingement when the rotator cuff muscles rub up against the acromion (the protruding end of the scapula). As a result, you may feel discomfort or pressure on your shoulders. Because of the increased pressure and decreased joint space, high-arm activities might aggravate shoulder impingement.

What Equipment Do I Need for Kipping Pull-Ups?

Besides a kipping pull-up bar, you will need space to kip your body up and over the bar. If you don’t have access to a kipping pull-up bar, you can use a standard pull-up bar or a tree branch.

Additionally, having someone spot you when performing kipping pull-ups is helpful. This is because kipping pull-ups can be dangerous if performed with poor form. Finally, you may want to wear gloves when performing kipping pull-ups to protect your hands from calluses.

Kipping Pull Up: Bottom Line.

Kipping pull-ups are a more advanced movement and should only be attempted by those with experience in strength training. If you are new to kipping pull-ups, start with regular pull-ups and progress to kipping when you have mastered the basic movement.

Now that you know how to do kipping pull-ups, give them a try and see how they can help you build explosive power and improve your grip strength. Remember to use caution when doing this exercise and to warm up properly before attempting kipping pull-ups. Now, go to the gym and kip away.

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