Today’s Exercise for Confidence may sound like a mouthful.
And the word “eccentric” may leave non-strength coaches wondering if it’s a chin up that is “bizarre” “unusual” “erratic” or “offbeat.”
Well, yes. After all, that is what thesauraus.com has listed as synonyms for eccentric. And this certainly is a movement that is “out there.”
In strength and conditioning jargon, eccentric means the lengthening of muscle fibers occurring against an opposing force (load lifted). This is why some
people bros call these “negatives,” which put a lot more strain on the muscles than concentric and isometric contractions.
Here is this week’s Exercise for Confidence:
There’s a lot of physiological and functional benefits going on here.
For one, the eccentric component will cause more muscle damage and provide a much more challenging alternative to conventional pull ups. The slow and controlled “lowering” of this movement also has its way of reinforcing you maintain total body tension (core stability), and evade any swinging. CrossFitters, take notes.
The pause at the top ups the ante as well, but also ensures I get my chin over the bar, pull the bar to my chest, and initiate movement with my back.
Speaking of back, check out this epic close-up:
^ This happened post-eccentric sets when I banged out a new PR of 8 chin ups.
Finally, the chains are self explanatory: they provide more load while giving you some badass accessories. More often than not, people are doing their eccentric chin ups, but they forget they can add weight. So if you’re at a plateau in your programming, dazzle yourself with chains or strap on a weight belt or hold a dumbbell between your feet.
As far as programming, I perform these 1-2x a week. Since I’ve been trying to improve my chin ups, my workout routine looks like this:
Mon: Chin ups 3 x 8 (light day)
Wed: Eccentric Loaded Chin ups 3 x 4 or 3 x 5 (heavy day)
Fri: Chin ups 5 x 5 (medium day)
Enjoy and let me know you do.