- Target Muscle Group
- Exercise TypeStrength
- Equipment RequiredBodyweight
- Force TypePull (Bilateral)
- Experience LevelIntermediate
- Secondary Muscles
Abs, Biceps, Shoulders, Upper Back
Chin Up With Leg Raise Overview
The chin up itself is an excellent lat and bicep building exercise and the leg raise is a highly recommended ab exercise. By adding the leg raise to the end of the exercise, you not only add a great core exercise, but the isometric hold of the chin up increases the time under tension on the lats and biceps which can lead to greater muscle growth.
Chin Up With Leg Raise Instructions
- Using a pronated grip, grasp the bar with a shoulder width grip.
- Take a deep breath, depress the shoulder blades and drive the elbows straight down to the floor while activating the lats.
- Pull your chin towards the bar until the lats are fully contracted, then squeeze the abs and raise the legs to 90 degrees.
- Lower the legs and then slowly lower yourself back to the start position.
- Repeat for the assigned number of repetitions.
Chin Up With Leg Raise Tips
- To decrease bicep involvement, use a false (thumbless grip).
- Try to keep a neutral head position (looking straight ahead or slightly up) as hyperextending the neck can lead to compensations throughout the spine.
- If the bar is high enough, keep the legs straight and in front of the body.
- Avoid falling into overextension of the lumbar spine by squeezing your glutes and bracing your abs.
- The chin up is completed when the lats are fully flexed, don’t continue pulling and compensate with the pecs.
- Keep your shoulders down and back, if they round forward at the top then you’ve pulled too far.
- A lifter’s segment length will determine whether or not they can actually get their chin over the bar, it’s not an absolute for everyone.
- Lower to almost full extension of the elbow but avoid locking out completely as this can place excessive strain on the ligamentous structures within the elbow and shoulder.
- If you can’t complete a single bodyweight chin up, start with slow negatives or flexed arm hangs at the top position.
- Ditch the straps and kips, neither one is necessary or recommended.