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Beginner – Advanced
To master dips
About this Progression
Our dips progression will require the for any of our calisthenics workouts. Standard dips are performed on parallel bars, so you will need these. We based our progression around the rings for more difficulty. You’ll also need some kind of heavyweight. Best to get a weight belt for the plates. See our calisthenics equipment page for more information on this. This progression is very short but will give you great benefits: amazing upper body strength (chest, tricep and shoulders)!
Check out some tips on doing dips here:
Dips Progression Exercises List
Step 1: Bar Dips
The first two exercises in our dips progression involve parallel bars. Simply follow the video above for a guide on this part of the progression. You could actually focus more on your chest and anterior delts by slightly tilting forward during your dips rather than dipping straight down.
Step 2: L Sit Bar Dips
As well as working your upper body, this next exercise engages your core by holding this L Sit position. You may want to see our planche progression to work your way to holding this position. Extend your legs out in front of you while holding the parallel bars and perform the dips again.
Step 3: Ring Dips
For this part of the progression you will need gymnastics rings rather than bars. You must be able to stabilize yourself on rings with your hands turned out during the top position. Do this while holding the L Sit position, but if you can’t perform dips in the L Sit position you may want to try doing it from the normal dips position to start. The rings require your upper body to work on stabilizing the position held as well as the strain given from the normal dips position. As you go down the dip, rotate your arms inward just until your hands are parallel to each other then push up while rotating them again outwards.
Step 4: Weighted Dips
Moving back to parallel bars now, you should now perform dips with some kind of heavy weight (like a circular weight). This should be 10-20kg depending on the resistance you want to add. You may want to work from 10kg and progress to 20kg or higher, but that’s up to you. This is also a great opportunity to promote safety in this part of the dips progression. Please do not hang the weight from your neck or attempt to support in with some other part of your body. The suggested method is to chain it to some kind of weight lifting belt, otherwise you can find straps to hold it around your waist. There are plenty of safe options, but please exercise caution. Anyway, perform dips on bars with the weight and you will gain some awesome upper body strength with our dips progression.
An advantage of weighted dips is that you can easily make progress – just continue adding weight depending on your needs and preference.
You may wish to progress to doing weighted dips on rings, but we feel that doing it on bars will give you more than enough strength for now. In addition, you can be hauling seriously monstrous weight on the parallel bars safely.