Chinups and pullups are both great exercises, and there’s room for both in any strength training regimen. Each of these exercises targets some similar and some different muscles. Here’s the breakdown:
Chinups are performed with an underhand grip. This exercise is great for the back, especially the lat muscles, and also recruits the biceps and pectoral muscles. The chinup tends to be easier to perform than the pullup.
Pullups are performed with an overhand grip. This exercise recruits the trapezius muscles more effectively than the chinup. The pullup also works your abs and shoulders.
If you’re not quite ready for chinups or pullups, the lat pulldown activates the same muscles and can be an effective starting point. You can change your grip on the lat pulldown exercise – and perform single-arm lat pulldowns – to work more muscle and make the exercise more effective. (please see related article, Change Grips to Improve Your Lat Pulldown)
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