Assisted chin up is an excellent exercise for your upper back and biceps. It’s a chin up assisted with the help of a resistance band.
This is an easier variant of a standard chin up. The band is used to make you feel lighter.
If you are still struggling to do a first chin up, this is an excellent way to prepare. But it doesn’t have to be used exclusively as a chin up preparation exercise. If you mastered standard chin ups, this exercise can be used as a regression.
This will help you increase time under tension. It will be great for muscle hypertrophy and add to your muscle growth.
Band assisted chin ups will help you do the same movement as in standard chin ups. This exercise will work the same muscles as chin ups.
What is a band assisted chin up
Band assisted chin up is coming from the same “family” of exercises as pull up. This exercise will primarily help you improve the strength of your upper back and your biceps.
The motion that you will be doing will be the same as a regular chin up. You will put your legs inside a band. This will decrease the load on your muscles and you will be able to do more reps.
Don’t underestimate this exercise. Band will help you in the lowest part of the movement when it is fully stretched.
As you lift your weight up towards the bar, the band will shrink and its resistance will drop. At the highest point of the movement you will have to use almost the same strength as in a normal chin up.
The main benefit of this exercise is that it gives you a different option to develop your biceps muscles. We all know about biceps curls. Chin ups will load your biceps more than biceps curls.
This will help you build strength and size of your biceps beyond what is possible with biceps curls.
Band assisted chin ups will also help you improve your upper back muscles. It will add size to your lats and build a desired V shape.
Band assisted chin up is a compound exercise that builds several muscle groups at the same time. The transferable effects of this exercise will help you with various other exercises. It will help you progress with other pull and push exercises faster.
Assisted chin up muscles worked
As already mentioned, band assisted chin up will build your biceps and your upper back. However, there are other muscles involved in this exercise too.
Band assisted chin up muscles worked:
- Latissimus dorsi
- Teres major
How to do a band assisted chin up
Wrap a band around the pull up bar. You should place it in the middle of the bar.
Grab a pull up bar with both of your hands somewhere around shoulder width or a bit closer. Your palms should be facing toward you.
Place both your feet inside a band loop. Hang freely from the bar and extend your toes towards the floor. Ideally, your legs would not touch the floor when hanging.
To start moving up, pull your body up towards the bar by bending your arms at your elbows.
Keep on lifting up until your chin is over the bar. Don’t raise your chin up over the bar. Your head should be facing straight ahead during the movement.
Be careful that your shoulders don’t raise up to your ears. Keep your shoulders depressed down as much as possible. Especially near the upper point of the movement.
To go back down, straighten your arms in your elbows. Keep extending your arms until they are completely straight.
Continue doing these movements for reps.
Common mistakes and fixes
There are several common mistakes people tend to do when performing assisted chin ups. Most mistakes come because of poor education about the movement.
People are usually overconfident and think they know how to do it correctly. This leads to poor execution, leak of energy, and potentially harmful performance.
Other mistakes come because of a lack of strength and will need some time to correct.
Mistake 1: No tension and swinging
The first common mistake in this exercise is not keeping your entire body under tension. This will make you swing around without control. It will lead to an energy leak.
Even though you might be strong enough, this will hinder your performance. You might miss a rep or two because of this.
To overcome this common mistake concentrate on keeping your toes pointed towards the floor. Also, keep tension in your abs during the entire movement. It will help you eliminate this problem.
Mistake 2: Limited range of motion
Another common mistake is not doing a complete movement. This happens because you might be extending your neck and lifting a chin over the bar.
Overcoming this mistake is easy. Keep your head straight during the movement. If you concentrate on looking at one point far ahead of you, you will be able to keep your head straight.
Mistake 3: Lifting shoulders
If you still lack strength to perform this move you might let your shoulder come up to your ears. This happens especially near the highest point of the movement.
Overcoming this mistake might not be so easy. Return to easier exercises on the low bar.
Spend more time performing low bar chin ups and pull ups. This will help you improve the strength of your upper back and biceps needed for this exercise. You will certainly be able to improve over time.
Don’t worry if you make some of those mistakes. I was doing them all. It took time and effort to eliminate those mistakes. Don’t try to eliminate them all at once. Concentrate on one and improve your performance one mistake at a time.
Assisted chin up progression
If you are still not able to do band assisted chin ups, you can start with easier exercises. Easier exercises will help you increase your strength and flexibility so you can do your first band assisted chin up with perfect form.
If you want to do easier exercises to prepare you for band assisted chin ups here are a few exercises that you can try from easiest to hardest:
If band assisted chin ups are getting too easy for you, you can try harder exercises that will challenge you more. Here are some harder exercises you can try from easiest to hardest:
- Chin ups
- Assisted chest to bar chin ups
- Low bar chest to bar chin up jumps
- Chest to bar chin up negatives
This exercise is a part of a muscle up progression. It stands somewhere around the beginning of this progression.
Band assisted chin up is an excellent exercise for developing your upper back and biceps. It will also improve your shoulder flexibility.
This exercise is part of a muscle up progression. When you master it, you will be well on your way to your first full muscle up.