Get your first bar muscle-up with just 3 sessions a week.
This Train Your Weakness FOCUSED programming will have you above the bar in 6 weeks.
Control 1 (5min)
3 rounds for form: 10 scapular pull ups and 10 scapular push ups. Focus on simultaneously performing scapular depression and retraction to lift the body (keeping elbows straight). Scapular pull ups and push ups will help you properly learn to initiate movement in pulling skills using the correct muscles, and prime the body with correct movement patterns for today’s work.
Attempt 2 minutes of bar muscle ups. Film this effort! This is a test, and an opportunity to see your improvement by the end of the six weeks of work you are undertaking. Set up your camera at your front and off to the side, at an angle. Give yourself exactly 90 seconds to attempt the movement. If you can’t get them at all - just keep trying, don’t get frustrated, remember this is an opportunity to measure where you are now so you can see in six weeks how far you have come!
Alternating Tabata (20 seconds of work, 10 seconds of rest) of hollow and superman holds 8 sets of 20 seconds on, 10 seconds rest. 4 rounds of each. Start with reverse Tabata if this is too much. Body awareness: This drill with ingrain key positions of the muscle up kip – the hollow position and the superman position. Being able to switch between these two movements at ease. These movements will be strengthening our core and posterior muscles.
EMOM: Every minute on the minute for 6 minutes: Kipping practice on the bar (8-10 swings). Focus on achieving the positions from our midline work above while maintaining a tight rhythm. For the first three minutes perform small tight kips. For the second three minutes, engage more through your lats and aim to bring your chin in line with the bar without bending your elbows. The goal is to achieve the hollow and superman positions practiced above by coordinating the movement through your lats. On the back swing, think about pulling "down" on the bar to raise your body (still keeping in mind that the arms stay straight)
10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Strict pull-up and Strict dip *This is strength work NOT a metcon. Perform perfect reps. Add weight if desired to challenge. You will be doing 10 strict pull-ups, then 10 strict dips, then 9 pull-ups, 9 strict dips... and so on. Rest as needed. Strengthening the pulling portion of our muscle up is absolutely essential – if you cannot perform at least 8-10 strict pull-ups you will struggle to perform a solid muscle up. This being said, it may be necessary to have to scale with a light band if needed. Don't let this get you down, we have a full 6 weeks to lose the band! This exercise will work towards developing the pressing strength required to kip out of the bottom of the dip while developing strength in the upper body – the shoulders, arms, upper back and lats. The dips can be performed as box dips, ring dips or matador (preferred).
Accumulate 2min in a hollow hang with thumbs AROUND the bar Think of having an “over grip” position, where your knuckles are more to the top of the bar. When this position starts to weaken/slip, jump down and reset. This static hold sets up an easier transition position, similar to a false grip on the rings. This builds grip strength, upper body and core strength required for a bar muscle up, as well as promoting body awareness.
Set a running clock for 8 minutes: Bar muscle up box straight arm pull drill This is to establish our hollow and superman positions, while slowly integrating the straight arm pull, manageable sets, rest as needed. Great one to film!
12min AMRAP (As many rounds as possible): 8 diamond push ups 10-12 barbell or dumbbell bicep curls (choose a weight that allows you to get through these with some struggle in the last few reps) 20 sec hollow hold Working towards building strong biceps, triceps and core which are all crucial to our bar muscle up. Continue to aim to separately develop strength and coordination before uniting the two later in the program.
2 sets of 15 side plank hip lowers Focusing on development of the core and obliques. Promoting shoulder stability if done correctly.
Bar Muscle-Up Negatives
8 x 2
Pull-Ups: Explosive Strict Pull Up
4 x MAX
4 x MAX
Brent has been a CrossFit Regionals athlete since 2013 and a CrossFit Games athlete since 2016. He is nicknamed "The Professor" because of his deliberate and thoughtful approach to training. He also started The Professor Project in 2018, helping athletes become more efficient in movement, mindset, and more.
By focusing on Brent's weaknesses, they qualified for the CrossFit® Games and landed on the podium. The caliber of athletes Bobby Dee has coached is matched by his own personal achievements. He holds a Masters in Chiropractic, has elite history in the military, podium finisher in Australia’s Strongest Man, completed an Iron Man, an ultramarathon and competed at a high level in rugby and CrossFit®.
2-time CrossFit® Games individual competitor and 9-time regionals athlete, Jeremy is a Level 2 Certified CrossFit® Trainer and owner of CrossFit® Vernon in Vernon, BC, Canada. Jeremy made his first trip to the CrossFit® Games in Carson, California, following that with a repeat trip in 2012.
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