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Old 09-07-2006, 06:59 AM   #1
Matt Smiley
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When I first got my rings last month I started trying for a muscle up, and like most people, I found them elusive at first – the grip just didn’t feel right. Then I discovered a little trick that I haven’t seen mentioned anywhere on here that helped me pop right up into the dip position: Instead of taking a regular grip or a false grip, grab the rings on the very top part. Palms should face up and towards you, your index fingers should be near the straps – essentially you are grasping the underside of the top of the circle. As you pull yourself up, your hands may slide down the side a little, but you should have a little extra height that will allow you to get into the dip a little easier.

If you haven’t been able to get through the transition from pull to dip, give this a try. It’s not a real muscle up since you’re giving yourself an unfair advantage at the start, but it will help you get a feel for the motion and let you grease the groove on that transition. Eventually I moved my hands from the top of the ring (11 o’clock –ish) to the side of the ring (9 o’clock) to the bottom (6 o’clock) – which is where your grip is supposed to be - and last night I hit 2 consecutive muscle ups for the first time.

Happy training everyone!
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Old 09-07-2006, 07:46 AM   #2
Tom Brose
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great job Matt!

Now, how are the O-lifts going?
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Old 09-07-2006, 08:01 AM   #3
Roger Harrell
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Matt,

Sorry, but I must disagree. Your hands should be in the base of the ring. Your method may work on rings that are not anchored to the straps and can spin within the straps, but any gymnastics ring setup and the new elite rings from Tyler won't spin in the strap so your hands need to be where they will be in a support. My guess is that gripping near the top of the ring simply helped you to get a proper false grip. Once that happened you were able to move your hands to where they needed to be.
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Old 09-07-2006, 08:50 AM   #4
Matt Smiley
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Roger - I fully acknowledge that hands should be in the bottom of the rings, BUT if someone is trying MUs this way and they are keep hitting a brick wall at the transition, then moving the grip up top can give them a little cheat to get a feel for the motion. It's not a proper MU, but I think it's a useful trick for a beginner, like doing knee push ups if you can't do real pushups. It was at your suggestion (thanks by the way!) from another thread about a month back that I began moving my starting grip down to the back of the rings and eventually got a feel for proper MUs with a real false grip at the bottom. The whole progression from top grip to side grip to bottom grip worked fine with elite rings (it was my sweaty hands that slid down into the support position for the dip, not the rings, themselves) and it saved me from a lot of the frustration that I know a lot of people feel when they hit failure after failure on their early MU attempts. Rather than "crap...crap...crap!" I was feeling "hey! cool!...hey - even better!...woohoo - legit!"

Tom - Oly lift progress has been slow but steady. Still lots of room for improvement, but still lots of fun. Your lesson was tons of help!
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Old 09-07-2006, 11:41 AM   #5
Roger Harrell
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Maybe. I've had uncoutable folks that have been at the "crap, crap, crap" stage have gotten MU within a minute or two at various CF certs and seminars with just a couple pointers. This may be a way of helping folks get through it without first hand coaching, but I still think the progress to a proper MU is quicker with proper direction and just getting your hand in the right place to begin with.

BTW if your hands are sliding on the rings that's likely a big source of your trouble with the MU. It's much harder to do without a firm non-sliding grip.
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