Technique Tuesday

What's the Difference Between Pull-ups and Chin-ups?

Even though they’re very similar and effective, pull-ups and chin-ups are two different movements that target different muscle groups. Pull-ups have a reputation as being one of the more challenging bodyweight exercises, as they demand quite a bit of strength. Chin-ups, on the other hand, are often seen as an alternative to pull-ups and many find them a bit easier to perform. Regardless of how you view them, both have their place in your exercise routine! Pull-ups use an overhand grip (palms facing away from your body), with your hands slightly wider than shoulder width, and require you to pull yourself from a dead hang all the way up to the bar.  They primarily target the muscles of your back, but also involve the biceps, chest and obliques. Chin-ups are essentially the same movement, but utilize an underhand grip (palms facing toward you) with hands placed a bit narrower than shoulder width apart.  While the muscles of the back are still an area of focus, the biceps are much more involved in the movement, making it a great arm exercise. Despite how challenging both exercises can be, incorporate them into your routine by focusing more on strict form and technique as opposed to the number of repetitions you do.  You’ll soon start to see noticeable strength gains and find the number of repetitions you can perform will increase.