All you need to know about parallel dips

Perform a workout complete and training, as we know, requires the involvement of all the muscles and knowing the best exercises can be very useful to achieve this goal: among the dozens of existing practices, a very useful and appreciated exercise is the parallel dip, essential for toning your muscles and increase physical strength. However, it is a difficult movement to perform and which hides several pitfalls, so it is necessary to master the theory behind it before moving on to practice: today we are here to deepen how to perform the dip at the parallels by turning the light on muscles involved, on the right technique to train at best and on the mistakes to avoid so as not to hurt us.

Dip at the parallels: the muscles involved

Let’s start with the most important question: what are we going to train specifically when we do the dip bars? The answer is very broad and this can only be a point in favor of this exercise which in fact is always recommended in workout practices. The muscles most involved are the triceps (as is quite evident from the upward and downward movement of the exercise) and the pectoral, which are followed effectively by the shoulders and in particular the anterior bundle of the deltoid. Finally we must mention the trapezius, the rhomboid and also the abdominals, which must remain contracted for the entire duration of the exercise.


Dip at the parallels: the correct technique

Now that you know which muscles you are going to work on it is time to deepen the right technique to perform the dip at the parallels in the best possible way. To perform them correctly, hold the parallels and perform a jump in order to have your hands as the only support, then stabilize yourself with your arms outstretched and your torso slightly bent forward. At this point, contract the abdomen and begin to descend by bending the arms until the shoulders reach the elbow and then push hard in order to return upwards.

Learn a progression

The parallel dips, as we mentioned at the beginning, are not an easy exercise and you shouldn’t take it for granted that you know how to perform them correctly right away. If you feel unsafe or want to strengthen yourself in advance, you could opt for a very useful progression to internalize the different parts of the movement. To start, you could dedicate yourself to pushups to increase strength in the chest and triceps, then specializing in negative dips, i.e. jumping on the parallels descending little by little and then getting off the tool and starting again (in this way you will improve the coordination necessary to the exercise as a whole). Once you have perfected this important aspect you can move on to dips with the elastic, in order to internalize the complete movement with a tool that will help you become familiar with the repetitions until you can do without them.

The variants

Now you know how to best perform the dips on the parallels and also how to correctly assimilate all the phases of this exercise: however, know that there are different variants with which to work both on the level of difficulty and on the degree of involvement of the various muscles. One of the most famous is the one that includes dips on the bench, a simplified version that allows you to train only the triceps in a specific way; alternatively you can opt for the dip with a single bar which instead worked more on the chest leaving “aside” the muscles we have just mentioned. If you feel really prepared and are looking for a really difficult challenge then the dips on the rings are definitely for you: in fact, since the rings are not a fixed support like the parallel bars, they require much more work by the stabilizing muscles such as the deltoid, abdominals and lumbar that are called to a massive intervention. The technique is the same as the standard version of the parallel dip, so make sure you know how to perform it perfectly before trying your hand at this variant.


Dip at parallels: mistakes to avoid

Like practically all existing physical exercises, even the dips at the parallels hide some insides to be careful of to avoid getting hurt: first of all you must avoid widening the elbows during the climbs and descents in order not to overload the joint, then remember to keep high chin (so as not to hug your shoulders) and tight abs to stabilize you. Another very important element is the level to which you descend by bending your arms, which as we have illustrated provides that the shoulders and the elbow are aligned: going down too low would be a mistake as you would risk injuring the rotator cuff, while stopping earlier would make incomplete and untrained exercise.

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All you need to know about parallel dips


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