FallOut CrossFit – School of Elite Fitness Tri-cities, WA

From the Blog

April 5, 2012

Strength: x5 of each every minute for 5 minutes
Strict Pull Ups

Games Push Ups

3 rounds

Rest for the exact amount of time it took you to complete previous interval

200 m run


400 m run


600 m run



A Deadhang Pull Up Versus a Kipping Pull Up

Which is better??? Neither. It all depends on your goal, but both have specific intentions. The deadhang, or strict, pullup is a bodybuilding-style pullup in which the purpose is to maximally contract the muscles of the back and arms – mostly the lats, biceps, and forearms. The rest of the body is meant to remain in enough tension to maintain a rigid structure. With the deadhang pullup, the body should not move except for those joints which are required to perform the movement itself, the elbows and shoulders. All other joints should remain relatively stationary, as they shouldn’t contribute to the force production required to execute the exercise. This is the classic exercise that people think of when they hear about pullups.

Here are some situations where the deadhang pullup could be utilized:

  • Improving raw, upper body vertical pulling strength (e.g. strongman competitors)
  • Preparing for a bodybuilding competition
  • Increasing muscle hypertrophy, in particular, the lat and bicep muscles
  • Getting started with basic gymnastics (beginner level)
  • Improving general rock climbing conditioning
  • Or preparing for another sport which requires upper body vertical pulling strength

The kipping pullup is a little more sophisticated than the deadhang pullup. Done correctly, it involves a hip snap that radiates up the spine and into the arms, effectively lifting the body with minimal upper body pulling. From a movement-standpoint, it is a much more efficient technique for elevating the chin over a bar. This is evident in that athletes who practice kipping pullups can achieve much higher numbers with a kip, than with a strict deadhang pullup. Unlike the deadhang version, the kipping pullup is a full body exercise. There is no room for muscle-isolation in kipping pullup performance.

If your goal is…

  • Improving full body strength and coordination
  • Improving advanced-level rock climbing conditioning
  • Improving advanced-level gymnastics conditioning
  • Improving hip snap for the barbell snatch exercise (Olympic weightlifters)
  • Improving advanced-level sport-specific performance

…then incorporating a kipping pull up is important in your routine.

As you can see, you see that there are different tools for different jobs. Some exercises are better suited for a task than others, and this is obviously true of kipping and deadhang pullups.




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