Building Strength To Perform a Muscle-Up #4

Do you dream of performing a bar muscle-up but feel overwhelmed by the challenge? Fear not! Our comprehensive program, “Get Your First Bar Muscle-up,” is here to guide you through each step of the journey, making the impossible possible. In this fourth installment of our program, we will focus on conquering the chest to bar pull-up—a crucial milestone on your path to mastering the bar muscle-up.

Before we delve into the specifics of the chest to bar pull-up, let’s quickly review the prerequisites. These exercises will lay the foundation for your success:

1-3 Strict Pull-ups: Strengthening the foundational pull-up movement is key to progress.

4-10 Toes To Bar: Developing core strength and coordination for dynamic hanging movements.

4-10 Kipping Pull-ups: Mastering the momentum and rhythm necessary for efficient kipping.

1-3 Chest to Bar Pull-ups: Introducing the concept of pulling higher and closer to the bar.

Optional: 1 Ring Dip (Body-weight): Enhancing upper body strength and stability.

First Toes To Bar Program-2
Effort Is A Choice
Now, let’s focus on conquering the chest to bar pull-up, a significant step towards achieving the bar muscle-up. While the chest to bar pull-up may seem daunting, remember that with proper technique and dedicated practice, you can master this movement.

Finding the right gym environment is essential to consistency and long-term results.

To excel in the chest to bar pull-up, it’s crucial to master the arch and hollow positions. The arch involves extending your body, creating a slight back-bend, while the hollow position requires engaging your core and pulling your rib-cage down. These positions provide a strong foundation for efficient pull-ups.

Efficiency in chest to bar pull-ups requires the ability to re-initiate the movement swiftly after each repetition. Practice smoothly transitioning from the extended position to the hollow position, allowing for consecutive, fluid reps.

Expanding your range of motion and bringing your chest closer to the bar are vital for successful chest to bar pull-ups. Focus on the following techniques:

  • Large Beat Kips: Utilise large, powerful swings with your legs to generate momentum and propel your chest higher.
  • Jumping Hips to Bar: Practise explosively driving your hips upward as you initiate the pull-up motion, aiming to touch your chest to the bar.
Bar Muscle-up Photo 5
Comfort is Earned not Found

To close the gap and achieve the chest to bar position, focus on exercises that target the relevant muscles:

  • Inverted Rows: This beginner-friendly exercise engages the upper traps, biceps, and core. It serves as an excellent entry-level movement to develop pulling strength.
  • Chin-ups: By emphasizing the bicep-dominant chin-up variation, you can further develop your lat muscles and enhance your ability to pull your chest to the bar.
  • Chest to Bar Negatives: Starting from the finishing position of the chest to bar pull-up, perform negatives to maximize lat tension throughout the range of motion. Modify the exercise by using a high rig and a box for support if needed.

Embrace the Journey: Beginner’s Guide to Bar Muscle-ups

Embarking on the journey to your first bar muscle-up requires patience, dedication, and consistency. Celebrate each milestone along the way and embrace the process of improvement. Remember, progress takes time, and every step forward brings you closer to achieving your goal.

Are you a beginner eager to learn more about the bar muscle-up and other essential exercises? Check out our full 6 Week ‘Get your first Bar Muscle-up’ program


We are a functional fitness facility and understand we have biases like everyone else, we have attempted to be as objective as possible when creating this guide. Understand that what is valuable to one person may not necessarily be valuable to another. Thought and planned out choices always lead to better decisions. It is ok to invest in yourself and you can create your own change, you are always in control just take the wheel. If you have ay questions about Personal Training, get in touch with us today. We are happy to help!

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