Deadhang Pullups Versus Whatever

Posted on 04 Sep 2009 20:21

A "question" about so called deadhang pullups has found its way into way too many trainee's minds. We can blame Crossfit once again for muddying the waters.

All "variations" of the pullup are really not changes to the basic exercise, they are just changes to grip. Beyond that you just pull your body up after hanging from a bar. You either start a pullup from a completely stretched "dead" hang, you do a little bit of cheating with your legs, or perhaps leave the elbows flexed a bit. But the mechanics of the exercise is basically the same.

For those of us who are proficient at the pullup there is no controversy here. I dare say we at GUS are beyond proficient since most of us can strap quite a bit of weight between our legs and pull ourselves up. Let's assume we can rep out pretty good from a "dead" hang.

What I'm saying is we really just don't care THAT much. Most of our pullups are done strictly. The only 'controversy' that exists between the widely known variations of the pullup is with the bodybuilding community. Do wide grip pullups hit the upper lats, bro?

Crossfit, with its kipping obsession has managed to put the "deadhang" term into popular use and thus create a quite unneeded question. Trainees think they must hang from the bar for five seconds between each rep or they are not being strict.

This is all just a spillover. The controversy is between Kipping Pullups and regular pullup. Why there should be a controversy I don't know. If you want to do a kipping pullup do a kipping pullup. It doesn't offend my sensibilities so let's stop being so precious about it. I'll look for you at the Olympics. I'll bet your ring routine will be stellar.

They are two quite different exercises in my mind and it's like comparing a deadlift to a clean.

There is absolutely no reason why a trainee who is not interested in Kipping pullups needs to analyze a regular pullup to such an extent. Funny thing is the people who do this are having trouble doing pullups. So there you go. This is analysis paralysis at work. If you can barely do one pullup then deadhang is just a word. Just because crossfitters must have at least a 3 to 1 ratio between analysis time and workout time doesn't mean we must follow suit.

Institutionalized zeal is never appropriate, in my opinion. There is a fine line between passion, camaraderie, and FERVOR for a method that replaces what should be passion for results.

By the way, if you really cannot do a pullup, you may be interested in my article Can't Do A Pullup? Stay Positive. It is full of lots of words and lots of tips.

This page created 04 Sep 2009 20:21
Last updated 24 Feb 2015 22:37

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