Hey guys. I’m Arian Bozman, and I’m here with Cara Hipskind today at CrossFit HQ, and we’re going to be talking about the pull-up-bar muscle-up. If you can perform five chest-to-bar pull-ups and five deep dips, you should have enough strength to perform a bar muscle-up, but the technical aspect is probably going to be the trickiest part, so we’re going to take a look at that today.
So as you guys watch Cara do a few muscle-ups, look for a few key points. You’re going to see a really tight, efficient kip that drives her towards the bar. You’re going to see her pull the bar as deep as she can, getting the bar as close to her hips as possible. And she’s going to wait until the bar makes contact with her body before she begins the transition into the bottom of the dip.
Alright, so we’re going to break the bar muscle-up down into a few key points. The first thing we’re going to look for is a really controlled swing that sets us up for success. The second is capitalizing on the kip to get as deep as we possibly can in the pull.
And then finally, getting through the transition and waiting for the timing to be right. Take a look at Cara’s swing. You’ll notice that we’ve got a lot of control, but it’s also really agressive. Once we have our swing under control we’re going to practice pulling as deep as we possibly can, trying to get the bar as close to the hips as possible without a transition.
Once you’re comfortable with the swing and the really deep pull-up, you’re going to perform one more, and this time, when you reach the pull-up bar, you’ll try to perform a mini sit-up and push your upper body over top of the bar. The timing is important on this.
You need to wait until the bar contacts your body. If you try to transition early, you’re going to be fighting against yourself and it becomes very difficult. We’re going to take a look at four of the most common problems that we see during the bar muscle-up.
The first one we’re going to see is a problem with the swing, the second one is just not pulling deep enough on the pull-up, the third is a timing issue, and the fourth is a simple grip problem.
The first problem we want to avoid is a swing that’s sloppy or out of control. You can see Cara’s got a lot of unneeded motion that’s not going to set her up for success. Going back a step in the progression and practicing that swing, making sure it’s dialed in tight can be the best step to achieving your muscle-up.
The second problem is a chest-to-bar pull-up that doesn’t position the bar deep enough on the body. You can also see in those last few reps that Cara’s body is very vertical.
We need her to be leaning back a little bit so that she can capitalize on her ability to lean forward in the transition.
Take a look at Cara transitioning too early. This often leads to the dreaded chicken-wing position where we have the athlete with one arm over the bar and other arm still below the bar. Simply waiting until the bar makes contact with the body can alleviate a lot of problems in the transition.
Another issue we might see on the bar muscle-up is the athlete setting up with too wide of a grip. Sometimes athletes like to favor this grip for their chest-to-bar pull-ups, but as you can see, it makes it really difficult for the athlete to transition, because their shoulders just don’t have anywhere to go.
Alright everybody, so get out there and practice. Remember a few key things: a nice controlled swing, big kip–try to pull the bar as deep as you can–, wait for the timing, and make sure you’re setting up with your hands a little bit narrower than you might for the chest-to-bar pull-up on their own..
As found on Youtube