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3 Ways to Improve Your Chest to Bar Pull Ups

What distinguishes the C2B Pull Up from a normal pull Up is mainly the demand of a wider range of motion and a much stronger pull. If you want to progress, here are three ways to improve your Chest to Bar Pull Ups.


The concept is the same as it is with the normal Pull Up. Don’t go for kipping when you are not able to do at least five strict Pull Ups. As the Chest to Bar Pull Ups are way harder than the normal ones, you should be able to do three strict ones.  If you can´t do that, work on your Dead-hang Pull Ups. But even if you can do them, working on your strength never is a bad idea.

Here are a few tips out of many to improve the Pull Up:


Crossfit Bar for Chest to bar pull ups
Band assisted Pull Ups can provide a useful exercise for progression

When you can´t do any strict pullups it´s surely  best to start with assisted Pull Ups with a resistance band. Hang up the resistance band on the bar. Use a box (as you use for Boxjumps) as a step-ladder. Put one foot in the loop. That’s all. There are different steps of resistance, the weakly the band,the heavier you have to work. Don’t cheat  yourself; use the lowest resistance you need.


The Ring Row is essentially a reverse push-up. Most important is a stable core. Keep your body straight and tight.

Keep your feet on the ground, hold your arms straight and pull your chest forward. Try to let your thumbs touch your chest. Work with your back, not with your biceps.
You can scale the Ring Row by standing more upright or go harder by putting your feet on the same height as the rings (on a box).


To improve your strength there´s nothing better than a weighted Pull Up.  Be it Kettlebells, a Dumbbell or a vest, they build a solid muscular system because of the upper body isolation. For maximum progress, try to hold your chin over the bar as long as you can.

Dan bailey doing Chest to Bar Pull Ups with a weight
Weighted Chest to Bar Pull Ups build explosive power and strength


Strength and technique belong together inseparably. Without technique you will be able to do a few strict pull-ups, maybe a few more by training them. But you will never be able to go as fast, or do as many, as with a kipping or a butterfly Pull Up. On the other side you can´t do Kipping or Butterfly without the required strength. For chest to bar Pull Ups that counts even more.


No matter if you do kipping or butterfly Pull Ups, the hip is the key for a higher volume of C2B Pull Ups. If you let your hip explode during the kip you will get a higher Pull Up with less need of your arms and back.

‘More reps + less effort = Efficiency.’

To make your hip swing more efficient, focus on your core. Squeeze your bottom. The Gluteus is one of the most powerful muscles in your body and allows you to produce the wanted explosive movement.

If you are familiar with Butterfly and Kipping movements, be aware that it is way harder to keep the rhythm while doing C2B pullups.


Change between pullups and chin-ups. Both are legit for competition. You can switch them to avoid getting tired. So practice both.


No-one is a born master. Ask your coach to identify and correct your weaknesses. The perception of your own body may be deceptive. Another person will always be in the position to see what you can´t perceive, and if that’s your coach, then even better.

If you work out without a coach, ask another member who may be more advanced for help, or ask them to film you and watch your movement in slow motion. Especially if you train outside a box, film yourself to control potentially wrong moves, and for proof of progression.

Featured Image ©

Bands © Fitness Chronicles

Ring Row © youtube video ReebokCFONE

Weighted Pull Up © Crossfit Perpetua

Bar Kip Progression youtube video © Freestyle Connection

Kipping Pull Ups (Fix Hips) © Youtube Video CrossFit Ogden

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