I’ve always wanted to be able to do a strict muscle up. And MovNat upped the ante by introducing me to a false grip strict muscle up. Pull-ups have never been an issue and neither have dips. The problem is bridging the gap between a pull-up and a dip to complete the muscle up. Enter the elbow pull up!
The Elbow Pull Up
The elbow pull is a relatively simple exercise. However, to get through the full range of motion requires a fair bit of strength and technique. It’s important to get enough of your arm on the bar and to not focus on using your hands. Once you get your chest high enough you won’t be using them at all.
The surface you choose to practice on can make a huge difference in the difficulty. Flat and rough is the easiest. Unfortunately for this video, I picked slippery and not straight. Also the larger the diameter of the surface you practice on the more comfortable it’ll be. A narrow 1″ pull up bar is extremely uncomfortable on the elbows!
Don’t focus on getting lots of reps. Focus on improving your range of motion. Perform 1-3 reps for 3-5 sets. But don’t start working on elbow pull-ups until you’re very competent are regular pull-ups. Elbow pull-ups require a lot more strength than pull-ups. To build up to it, you can always just hang in the bottom position.
Have fun working toward your first muscle up. I know I am!