Chest Dip Video Guide

Exercise Profile

  • Strength
  • Bodyweight
  • Compound
  • Push (Bilateral)
  • Intermediate
  • Abs, Shoulders, Triceps
Chest Exercises Diagram Target Muscle Group

Exercise Instructions

  1. Step up on the dip station (if possible) and position your hands with a neutral grip.
  2. Initiate the dip by unlocking the elbows and slowly lowering the body until the forearms are almost parallel with the floor.
  3. Control the descent to parallel and then drive back to the starting position by pushing through the palms.
  4. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Exercise Tips

  1. Technically there are two ways to perform dips - neither is wrong, just different movement with different purposes:
    • Staying upright and keeping the elbows in close to increase tricep recruitment.
    • Leaning forward with elbows wider to increase chest recruitment.
  2. If possible, keep the legs straight down while bracing the glutes and abs to limit excessive spinal movement.
  3. If no dip station with steps is available, position a box underneath the handles to boost yourself up to the bars.
  4. If no box is available, then jump into position.
  5. Don’t allow the head to jut forward during the descent.
  6. Ensure the elbows stay just short of lockout to keep tension on the triceps.
  7. Experiment with a false grip by wrapping the thumb over the bar as this may be more comfortable for some.

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24 Comments+ Post Comment

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Posted Fri, 07/10/2015 - 02:16

Just a question on which way to perform the dips on the bar (not parallel bar).

The bar is usually shaped like a V, do i have my chest facing towards the inside (bars are closer together) or the outside (bars are further apart) of the V?

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Posted Sun, 09/21/2014 - 15:46

An alternative to the chest dip is either the Decline Barbell or Dumbbell Bench Press. Also, Incline Barbell or Dumbbell Press, Pushups, Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip and Dumbbell Flyes. Hope these help you out guys and good luck on all you do! ;-)

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Posted Mon, 03/17/2014 - 20:21

I am just recovering from a serious lower back injury. I love chest dips and was using a dip belt with 70lbs. on it. this was close to 300 lbs resistance for 6 to 8 reps. I used great form but I think it may have been the way the dip belt put unnatural weight on my lower back. I am back at the gym now and working twice as hard. I am trying to get some good opinions on whether I should go back to dips but with no weight ? Throw your opinions at me, that is why I am on here.

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Posted Fri, 11/08/2013 - 14:42
Ralph Blumenthal

Would it be ok to do dips every day. I am presently doing about 26dips, 3 sets every day. Do I need to rest every other day?

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Posted Tue, 11/05/2013 - 06:12

i know this is hard for most of guys out there! but this is my fav Exercise,,, i can do it 130 continuously in one set(i know its hard to believe but it's true-- i thought i cd do more than tht),...
The reason why i typed this post is i m doing it with maximum leaning to down wards ,, and at above instruction there is written its already puts unnecessary weight to shoulders, but i think as far u lean down below ur elbow lvl its far intresting of shoulders exercise Or is it wrong any suggestion from experienced person wd be appreciated !! thanks.

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Posted Sun, 10/06/2013 - 06:32

I am a beginner, how much time should be taken between sets???

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Posted Sun, 04/14/2013 - 19:11

I use two folding work horses ($30.00 at Lowes) to do dips. They fold away when I done with them and they can easily support my 220+ body frame.

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Posted Mon, 01/07/2013 - 15:41
Rajesh Kumar ( ...

I think it is good for to increase shoulder power.

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Posted Tue, 10/16/2012 - 17:50

Will seated chest dips work the same?

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Posted Fri, 10/12/2012 - 21:11

Would doing seated chest dips provide the same benefits?

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Posted Sat, 10/06/2012 - 00:48

I am a beginner is there an alternate exercise that will give me the same results of the chest dip

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Posted Wed, 09/19/2012 - 12:44

I started doing this routine a month ago and I have moved from a max of 7 to a max of 12! This full routine is awesome. I cant believe the changes that have come in only a months time!!

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Posted Sun, 09/16/2012 - 09:15

if i can't Do chest Dip what Else i do

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Posted Mon, 09/03/2012 - 20:41

Is there a subsitute for using the dip equipment? I do not have access to a gym and do not have this type of equipment.

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Posted Thu, 05/03/2012 - 06:21
esy e

yeah use your couch and another seat

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Posted Sat, 05/05/2012 - 14:00

I do exatly the same as you. Is doing it that way just as effective as using those rigs at the gym?

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Posted Thu, 04/19/2012 - 05:42

I do not have that equipment to do chest dips. Any other options to do chest dips without that equipment

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Posted Mon, 05/06/2013 - 00:37

Get a workout buddy and have them cradle you lower legs in their hands to give you the little extra to get you over the top. Works good while building up strength on the pull up bar as well.

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Posted Mon, 05/06/2013 - 17:11

Use two sturdy dining table chairs.

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Posted Sun, 08/04/2013 - 08:12

Chair dips

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Posted Thu, 09/11/2014 - 18:42

You can use two high-back chairs. You want the back of the chair to be as straight as possible to prevent the chairs from tipping towards you when you dip down.

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Posted Tue, 04/17/2012 - 16:28

If I am a true beginner and have no real strength in my shoulders or arms, can I just try to hold myself up for a period of time?

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Posted Fri, 04/27/2012 - 20:24

There are machines that are made to assist pull-ups and dips. Try those instead of the traditional dip bar.

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Posted Tue, 03/20/2012 - 04:00

how to use dips