Sure, women are often intimidated by just the sheer thought of doing pull ups or chin ups but trust me, they’re not impossible, they are possibly one of the BEST upper body exercises for women and if you have the willpower to push yourself you’ll feel like the strongest girl in the gym!
I guess it was about 2 years ago when I was given the challenge to start adding chin ups to my workout; of course I couldn’t do one but I started with the assisted pull up machine and progressed to today where I can do 30 in the course of 3 sets…
First off, what’s the difference between a pull up and a chin up?
- Pull up: Hands are turned away from you and often times a wide grip (wider than shoulder width) is used. The back muscles (lats and tapezius muscles) are pushed to the max, but the biceps and shoulders are used as well.
- Chin-up: Hands are turned towards you and grip is shoulder width apart. The arms (more specifically the biceps) are the muscles that are hit the hardest. But don’t worry your back and shoulders will still be worked.
Why should women do chin ups and/or pull ups? Why not? They are killer for building nice toned muscles, burning calories and fat, they help improve your grip strength and doing them will win the respect of all those around you in the gym!
Chin ups are your easiest between the two, but I can almost assure you that if you’ve never tried either one the chances you’ll be able to do 2 chin ups or more is slim… but that’s ok.
There are a few ways to start building up to a whole set of chin ups/pull-ups:
- If your gym has an assisted pull up bar that is awesome. I generally tell people to use a resistance that is ½ your body weight… but if that doesn’t help enough it’s ok to add more. Then each workout try to lower the assisting weight.
- If you don’t have an assisted machine you can do inverted rows! Set up a Smith Machine or use a barbell squat rack to set a barbell up off the ground about waist high. Lay under the bar, with shoulders directly under, tighten body and pull your nose up to the bar, keeping a straight body.
These are two great tactics!
If you have more questions or want to see the proof that I can do chin ups check out my Youtube video: