Become the Dip Master for Upper Body Mass


If you’re looking for a single exercise to add to every workout for upper body gains, dips are it. Targeting your shoulders, triceps, and chest, dips target the largest muscles above your waist. Dips don’t isolate one muscle group, so you can work them out every time you exercise without feeling the excessivesoreness. All you need are a set of parallel bars or dip bars, which most gyms are equipped with. Or if the weather is nice, the local park probably has some parallel bars if you like working out in the sun. If you’re just starting to work out, you can do dips with your hands on a bench and your heels on the ground to build up the strength to hold your whole body weight, but those aren’t the type of dips we’re talking about today.

Change Your Angle, Change the Exercise

The standard dip exercise on a dip bar – Start at in the “up” position, keep your body stiff as a board, bend at the elbow to bring your upper arm parallel with the bar, then extend your arms to lift up back to the start/rest position. There are several variations of the exercise to keep it challenging. If you’re at the point where you can do 30 or more dips, it’s time to change it up.

Keeping your body rigid from the start position, lean forward as far as you can go using your hands and forearms to maintain balance, and your lower back muscles and gluts to keep your legs extended straight. Maintain your angle as you dip and you’ll see the dip you used to know in an entirely different light… as starter dips. As you progress in strength, lean forward more and more until your body is parallel with the ground, into a flying superman position. The further forward you lean, the more chest, forearm, and wrist you’re using. Mix up the angle each set for a complete upper body exercise, every time you work out.

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