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How to Work on the Transition from Pull-up to Dip during a Strict Muscle-Up

In learning how to do a strict muscle-up (pull-up to dip and back down), for many, including myself, the most challenging part is transitioning from the top of the pull-up phase to the starting position of a dip.

This is the most effective way that I have found to work on learning the mechanics and developing the strength needed to smoothly transition from pull-up to dip during a strict muscle-up.

You'll need a strong resistance band like the one found here:

Resistance Band

Before suspending your rings, you'll need to loop the resistance band through both rings so that the band is firmly attached to both rings. Then, you can suspend your rings about shoulder width apart using your ring straps.

Find a way to sit on the resistance band, turning it into a swing that gives you upward momentum while you work on the transition of a strict muscle-up. You can use a chair or ladder if needed to get into position.

As the band gives you the momentum needed to get to the top of the pull-up phase, using a false grip on the rings and keeping the rings close to your chest, shift the rings laterally across your chest until they are at your armpits. Simultaneously shift your upper body forward, which will take you into the starting position of a dip.

During this exercise, there is no need to do the full range of a pull-up or dip; the goal is to work on getting comfortable with the mechanics of the transition phase. Aim for ten transitions at a time, going slowly upward and downward - working on lowering yourself out of the transition phase is equally important to developing upper body strength through strict muscle-ups. In fact, when first getting started, it is safest and most effective to spend more time on the downward eccentric phase than on the upward concentric phase.

If you don't know how to develop false grip strength, please do a search through our YouTube library for relevant videos, as using a false grip is essential to being able to execute strict muscle-ups.

For an overview of exercise progressions that you can work at to improve your mobility and balance in a systematic way, please feel free to visit our Mobility Exercise Progressions page here:

Mobility Exercise Progressions

For some suggestions on how to set up a simple workout area at home, please feel free to view:

Suggested Resources for a Home Gym


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