Variations of the Dip: Building a Better Athlete

Variations of the Dip: Building a Better Athlete
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Hey athletes! Here is the second installment of our Workout of the Week!
dip exercises for shoulder and chestThis week is an old school exercise that works wonders for the upper body, the Dip. And no I’m not talking the dance move. There are many variations of the Dip, but the one we are going to focus on today is the bar dip.
The Dip is a classic strength training exercise that is often over looked. A narrow grip dip, with your hands under your shoulders, works primarily your triceps. This tricep exercise really emphasizes that horse shoe look on the back of your arm. The Dip also recruits the help of your chest and you deltoids (the meaty muscle surrounding your shoulder). These muscles help stabilizes the body and keep it from swinging back and fourth during the motion. A wide grip dip targets the same muscles as the narrow grip, however; more emphasis is put on the chest.

When performing a dip follow these easy steps to achieve the perfect form.

  • Start hanging from a dip bar (or from a set of rings) with your arms straight and shoulders over your hands.
  • Lower your body until your arms are bent to a 90 degree angle.
  • Push down through the bar, lifting your body up, returning to the starting position.
Note: Due to the flexibility in our shoulders, it is important to keep them “locked” or “tight” to prevent unnecessary strain on the rotator cuff. An easy way to do this is to keep your head up and your chest pointing forward, this will prevent your shoulders from rolling forward.

If you find the Dip too easy and aren’t feeling anything from it, get tricky and throw one of our trusty “dip belts” and pack that sucker full of extra pounds. This will help you reach those “wow look at him/her” level. But always remember good form is key to building muscle.
Adding this exercise to your routine will provide you with an amazing way to increase upper body strength! Be on the look out for our Workout of the Week article next week. We will be focusing on simple progressions for common strength training exercises! If you want to receive these workout tips and more without even thinking, make it easy on yourself and subscribe to our blog and receive them instantly!!!


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A little more about Natasha Hawkins...

Experience: Division 1 Fastpitch Softball player at San Jose State. Degree: B.S in Marketing and Advertising Certifications: Certified Level 1 CrossFit Trainer Interests: She loves the way the brain works and how personalities and attitude can create a warrior of an athlete that will always persevere and make success for themselves. While she is not a certified nutritionist she studies and practices the Paleo diet and Zone eating. Quirk: I am an avid archer and hunter. Yup, it's true. I have shot archery since I could walk, and hunted with my Dad since I was born. I also have a sister (Cheridan Hawkins) who is a stud pitcher for the Oregon Ducks Softball Team and is on the Junior Olympic Team. My youngest sister Charli Hawkins trains with me at CrossFit and is also a catcher on the 12U California Grapettes. Follow Natasha on Twitter: @NatashaBHawkins