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View Full Version : Eliminating swing from Muscle Ups?


Rob Harris
10-08-2007, 03:50 PM
w/f safe:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bcZ36oNMm0

Is it just a matter of time spent on this skill or can you see something I'm doing wrong here?

Cory Osborne
10-08-2007, 05:15 PM
This may help. Notice the starting grip, palms facing away from yourself.

(wfs)Crossfit Muscle Ups (http://media.crossfit.com/cf-video/CrossFit_MuscleUps.wmv)

Good luck!

Cory Osborne
10-08-2007, 05:25 PM
Oops! Wrong video. I don't know where to find it but I believe Annie was showing the difference between palms facing in and palms facing out when you start. My bad.

Brian Degenaro
10-08-2007, 05:29 PM
w/f safe:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bcZ36oNMm0

Is it just a matter of time spent on this skill or can you see something I'm doing wrong here?

Just do a pullup without the kip. Pull the rings really close to your body. I'll quote myself from another post:

"Make sure you are pulling with a straight body and straight up. The biggest flaw I see when people perform muscle ups is they do not keep a hollow/straight body. Reaching with your chest or neck on a muscle up puts you in a disadvantageous position because when you reach your body tends to "lever" out and you turn the pullup into more of a row (sternum chinup if you will). This leaves your chest open and your body in a poor position to roll your shoulders forward. Pull your body straight up with your chest hollow (look down in order to keep the position. Another note is to keep the rings close to your body at all times as you're just learning. If the rings drift away from your body it makes the move much more difficult.

Here's a sequence to illustrate what I am talking about:

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y288/spydrmanjr/muscleup.jpg

"

I hate seeing muscle ups that are kipped because it completely eliminates the transition most of the time and people don't get a feel for moving through the muscle up. I've found people who can bang out a handful of kipping muscle ups can't perform a single deadhang one. but that's my own personal rant...

Matt DeMinico
10-10-2007, 11:57 AM
Just do a pullup without the kip. Pull the rings really close to your body. I'll quote myself from another post:

"Make sure you are pulling with a straight body and straight up. The biggest flaw I see when people perform muscle ups is they do not keep a hollow/straight body. Reaching with your chest or neck on a muscle up puts you in a disadvantageous position because when you reach your body tends to "lever" out and you turn the pullup into more of a row (sternum chinup if you will). This leaves your chest open and your body in a poor position to roll your shoulders forward. Pull your body straight up with your chest hollow (look down in order to keep the position. Another note is to keep the rings close to your body at all times as you're just learning. If the rings drift away from your body it makes the move much more difficult.

Here's a sequence to illustrate what I am talking about:

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y288/spydrmanjr/muscleup.jpg

"

I hate seeing muscle ups that are kipped because it completely eliminates the transition most of the time and people don't get a feel for moving through the muscle up. I've found people who can bang out a handful of kipping muscle ups can't perform a single deadhang one. but that's my own personal rant...

I'd like to be able to do a single kipping one even. Of course, I only just got my rings a week or so ago, and haven't really tried to learn how to do it, I just kinda hammered at it and said "dang this is tough".

Brandon Oto
10-10-2007, 12:03 PM
You just gotta learn to do it without the kip, whether you're missing form or strength or whatever. It's basically the same as learning from scratch; the fact that you're able to kip well enough to blast through the transition doesn't really affect that :)

Jerry Hill
10-10-2007, 06:04 PM
It seems like a matter of timing...
You have this crazy swing going on then when you finally commit you nail it with full force.
Multiple muscle-ups are no different then multiple chins; Find your cycle rate.
Accept and re-direct force.

Mike Groth
10-10-2007, 06:08 PM
Sorry to sort of Hijack your thread but Ive had a question about this. Right now I cant do any Muscle ups but I can get a whole lot closer when I try to swing into like the OP does in his vid. Is this ok to do when starting out? Should I be trying to do them strict?

Blair Robert Lowe
10-11-2007, 11:56 PM
The simple step to eliminating swing from a kipped MU is to stop the kipping action.

Hang, still yourself, pull, transition, push out. The rings may move a bit but that's ok.

Whether or not to kip depends on your desire and application there of. If you want to cycle them faster, kip. If you want it to be more about strength and power, don't.

As for those not able to do a MU, it doesn't really matter at that point. Jumping muscle-ups or feet on a block/spotted muscle-ups should be your concern. When ya can do the latter adequately, you can decide whether to kip or not.

I'm with Brian, if you want to show off, deadhangs are far more impressive. Kipping is fine for workload, but are kind of an aberration for showing strength ( not power ).

Jerry Hill
10-13-2007, 01:41 PM
Here is what I don't get...and I do not want to be an *** here, simply not getting the point of the no kip verse "hating" the kipped MU. I don't come from a gymnastics background so perhaps that is the problem with my clarity...
In CrossFit, we do multiple muscle-ups for time. If the ROM is there why would we do them without the kip?
Wouldnít this be the same exact argument that Coach has made in the kipping verse non-kipping pullup?
I understand that a "show of strength" in gymnastics would be with a non-kip but that's not what we aim to do in our WOD...

Brandon Oto
10-13-2007, 01:59 PM
Power is good but so is strength.

If you can't do it without kipping, you won't be able to do it if you can't kip.

Brian Degenaro
10-13-2007, 08:41 PM
I have nothing wrong with doing kipping muscle ups if itís 30 MUís for time, because after 12 MUís I have little energy to pull, so some sort of kip is needed (usually to do the pullup, from then I transition easily). However Iím completely and utterly against learning the muscle up with a kip. As I said before, you eliminate the most difficult and the identity of the muscle up: the transition. It is key to know how to move through the transition strongly and efficiently and properly if one is to improve muscle ups, such as wide grip MUís on rings and weighted MUís and other variations. You walk before you run; you don't teach a newbie to clean and jerk without showing them the deadlift and the press. People have to understand what they are doing and how to do it.

Jerry Hill
10-14-2007, 05:29 AM
Ah perfect Brian...you solidified my argument.

First off, we only do Muscle ups for time in our WOD, therefore we should kip.

The nail you put in the coffin for the non-kipped MU is comparing it to the press and deadlift...and then you glorify the transition.

The transition is only used for the MU...that's it...why glorify it?

Everyone knows the foundational benefit of the deadlift and press....but the MU? It's merely a way to get on top of the rings...learning the transition will make you better at the transition...learning the DL and Press will set your base for other foundational and function movements.

You walk before you run?
Don't tell a CrossFitter that!
The evolution of movement has been documented for 5 years here at CrossFit.com...
Effectiveness first...Efficiency later.
Look at early videos of Greg A. and Annie compared to today; They are a testimony to this creed.

Brandon Oto
10-14-2007, 05:57 AM
Jerry, the transition is a functional movement. It's not just a way to get on top of rings; it's a way to get on top of anything. I consider the muscle-up one of the MOST functional gymnastics movements we use, in terms of the technique itself.

Do kipping muscle-ups in every WoD, I don't care... but if an athlete is doing this and actually cannot do a strict MU (or can barely do one), I think it needs to be developed.

Jerry Hill
10-14-2007, 06:55 AM
Brandon,
I understand what you are trying to say...
But come on man, the transition of a non-kip MU is nothing like getting on top of anything...getting on top of anything is like a kipping MU...you use all possible means.

Brian Degenaro
10-14-2007, 07:08 AM
First off, we only do Muscle ups for time in our WOD, therefore we should kip.

As I said, I have nothing against it if it's for time. What you missed was I'm against learning kipping MU's before learning deadhang MU's. One builds upon the other.

The nail you put in the coffin for the non-kipped MU is comparing it to the press and deadlift...and then you glorify the transition.

Maybe you missed my point: a person with NO weightlifting background who comes to Crossfit is not going to learn how to C&J before he learns how to DL or press or squat (forgot that one in my previous post). You learn the individual components of it first.

I glorify the transition because that's what makes the muscle up the muscle up and nothing else. This difficult part of such a simple move is what makes it such an effective exercise.

Everyone knows the foundational benefit of the deadlift and press....but the MU? It's merely a way to get on top of the rings...learning the transition will make you better at the transition...learning the DL and Press will set your base for other foundational and function movements.

Muscle ups are foundational because as Brandon said, it's how you get on top of anything. Being proficient at the transition is essential when scaling walls, or other situations where a swing cannnot be utilized, because you have to know how to properly lever your BW so that you can get on top of the wall or other object and not waste energy. Someone who doesn't know how to do that will take not only a longer amount of time to scale something but also use more energy than someone who does. It seems to me that the transition is just as important as the DL in everyday life...

You walk before you run?
Don't tell a CrossFitter that!
The evolution of movement has been documented for 5 years here at CrossFit.com...
Effectiveness first...Efficiency later.
Look at early videos of Greg A. and Annie compared to today; They are a testimony to this creed.

The problem with that maxim is that it builds humongous bad habits that become more difficult to break to longer people practice them. If someone comes to Crossfit who, for years, had done quarter squats on his toes or who pulls with a rounded lower back in DL's, I would think that the responsible CF trainer would stop this person before allowing them to move to actual WODs and before they injured themselves.

Bad habits in MU's inhibit the progression towards more difficult variations. I know for a fact that the slightest problem with your form, kipping or not, makes weighted muscle ups nigh impossible. Hell, bad form in MU's inhibit muscle ups! I'll take an example from my own CF gym: one of the trainers was practicing muscle ups and always got stuck at the transition, kipping or not. I pointed out he was pulling improperly; he was pulling almost in a lever position, which makes MU's insanely more difficult. I told him to practice deadhang PU's so he could focus on pulling close to his body and maintain a hollow position. Learn the basics.

And the basics are essential on muscle ups for time because proper form eliminates using more energy than what is necessary to complete the movement. This comes in handy when you want to improve your time and score. Kipping muscle ups eliminate the transition almost completely; but when you're drained of energy, the flaws in your form are exacerbated and the transition becomes infinitely more difficult. However if you know how to perform MU's properly and know how to get by the transition, then it won't affect you as much.

Better form in the MU (achieved only through deadhangs) provides better form in kipping MU's. However, kipping MU's have no influence on deadhang MU's. That is why deadhang muscle ups are essential to a Crossfitter.

Brandon Oto
10-14-2007, 07:22 AM
Jerry, I think this comes down to the same situation as you have with shoulder press vs. push press/push jerk, kipping versus deadhang pullups, etc. You can cycle more power out of one, but power is not the ONLY goal we have; strength and technique are also important. Thus we do both.

We do shoulder presses because it's a better way to develop shoulder strength than a push jerk. It is! And it will improve your push jerk, and also let you push things when you don't have the ability to jerk it.

Talk to the Parkour guys about whether you can kip on a wall climb-up. Yeah, okay, it's not rings; I might buy the argument that bar muscleups are a more functional movement than ring muscleups, but that's a technique issue; the strength will be developed either way. Technique and strength... don't ignore them in the pursuit of power, anymore than you'd let your legs dip and drive on an ME shoulder press workout.

Jake Oleander
10-20-2007, 11:48 AM
you guys are wasting your time arguing each other over nothing :shrug:
go work out :D

Steven Low
10-20-2007, 12:11 PM
I say learn both. Kipping before deadhang or deadhang before kipping... I'd have to go with the former because it teachs you to get the right motion without the requisite strength.

Everyone should learn a strict muscle up IMO because the applications of it (e.g. pulling yourself onto a roof on an overhang with no grip up top) is extremely useful. Yes, I have used this in real life and the problem with no grip at the top is that the kip can basically throw you off the roof and you can't use your legs cause there's an overhang. Although this is more along the lines of doing it on a bar strictly.

Derek Maffett
10-26-2007, 02:01 PM
I understand Brian and Brandon's points, and I would agree that both should be learned and practiced, but I think kipping muscle-ups do have a place in teaching a deadhang. For one, it would reinforce the confidence of the athlete. Remember that most people just pull-up and then can't transition at all. Going through the motion with kipping muscle-ups would surely help.

I realize how difficult the transition is. I did a strict muscle up once with feet elevated and I know that it was monstrously difficult compared to the kipping muscle-up. I agree with the idea of working strict and kipping, but spare a thought for those who can't do the former at all.

Patrick Donnelly
10-26-2007, 03:37 PM
Re: Derek
I know you have the strength to do a deadhang muscle-up. Just work on the the false grip and hollow body technique.

I myself can do 3 deadhang muscle-ups, while I can normally only get 8 deadhang chin-ups!

Derek Maffett
10-26-2007, 03:52 PM
Yeah, it's probably technique with me, and so in keeping with my argument, I'll practice strict muscle-ups today.

Rob Harris
10-27-2007, 05:58 PM
Wow, this thread has turned into a DOOZY! :eek: Don't get me wrong, I want to work on dead hang Muscle Ups, which is why I posted. But the arguments have been interesting to say the least!

:pepper: