Neutral Grip Pull Ups / Chin Ups
Body Weight Back Exercises

Neutral Grip Pull Ups / Chin Ups are a great body weight exercise to build your lats and strengthen your back muscles.

You can do chin ups with many different hand positions and each different position slightly changes the emphasis on the working muscles.

The wide grip chin up is the hardest version because your shoulders are the least stable when your arm is out to the side and turned out to the side. Many bodybuilders and athletes feel that wide grip chin ups are the best back exercise.

When you do neutral grip chin ups, your palms will face each other. This is still a great back exercise, and you will find that you can do more repetitions with your hands in this position.

One reason that the neutral grip is easier is that your shoulder is more stable when your arms are at your sides. Another reason that the neutral grip is easier is that your biceps and forearm (brachioradialis) have better leverage and can pull harder in the neutral position.

Below are sample pictures.

Neutral Grip Chin Ups

Starting Position: You must find a chin up bar with neutral grip handles. If you cannot find a bar with neutral handles, you can use a triangle attachment from a seated row machine.

Form: Exhale and pull your body up so that your chin almost touches the bar. Hold for a brief second and then slowly lower to the starting position.

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Personal Trainer Tips: If you are not strong enough to do neutral grip pull ups, build up your strength with neutral grip lat pull downs or use a neutral grip on a chin up assist machine.

There are many different types of back exercises, but if you're a serious bodybuilder or avid athlete chin ups should be part of your routine.

Yours in Health,
Dr. Charles

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