Bar Muscle Up Drills Using a Box! 

Written By Charleh Knighton  |  Bar Muscle Ups 

Are you an athlete aiming to conquer the elusive bar muscle up? Or perhaps you're looking to enhance your technique and efficiency in this challenging gymnastic movement?

In this article, we'll explore the world of bar muscle ups and introduce you to some effective drills using a simple tool: a box.

Whether you're a beginner or seeking to refine your skills, these drills will help you develop the technique and strength required for a successful bar muscle up.

Understanding the Mechanics

Before delving into the box drills, let's briefly discuss the mechanics of a bar muscle up. This gymnastic movement requires a seamless transition from hanging below the bar to a position above it.

The key to mastering this move lies in the transition phase, and that's where the box comes into play.

1. Box-Aided Arch-Hollow Jump:

Start with a sturdy box placed in the middle of the pull-up bar. Stand on the box with both feet, slightly in front of the bar's vertical plane.

  • Grip the bar at shoulder width with arms fully extended.
  • Initiate the drill by bending your knees and moving into an arch position.
  • Transition from arch to hollow, maintaining control.
  • Finally, practice a small jump while keeping your feet on the box.
  • Repeat the Arch-Hollow jump sequence to reinforce the movement pattern.

This drill helps athletes become familiar with the transition phase and allows them to experience the rotation of the hands around the bar, a critical aspect of a successful bar muscle up.

Bar Muscle Up Drills Using a Box! (Simple Progression)

2. Single Leg Jumping Bar Muscle Up:

As you become more comfortable with the previous drill, it's time to challenge yourself further.

  • Use one foot on the box while maintaining an arch and hollow position.
  • Repeat the Arch-Hollow jump sequence with one foot on the box.
  • Focus on engaging your core and maintaining control throughout the movement.

Adjust the box's height to increase or decrease the challenge as needed, allowing you to work on your jumping and transitioning skills.

3. Box Drop-In Bar Muscle Up:

Once you've practiced jumping bar muscle ups and worked with bands to build your confidence, it's time to revisit the box.

  • Place the box strategically to help you get into position.
  • Begin by jumping into a hollow body position.
  • Perform a powerful kip, which will propel you up and over the bar.
  • Complete the bar muscle up by transitioning smoothly.

This drill is an excellent way to bridge the gap between assisted and unassisted bar muscle ups. It enables you to focus on the critical transition phase without worrying about reaching the bar from a dead hang.

Scaling Up or Down

The beauty of using a box in your bar muscle up training is its versatility. You can easily adjust the box's height to match your skill level and progress gradually.

  • Lower the box height for a more challenging workout, requiring greater jumping power and technique.
  • Raise the box height to make the movements more manageable while you perfect your form and transition.

So, what's next?

Incorporating box drills into your bar muscle up training regimen can be a game-changer.

These drills provide a structured approach to mastering this gymnastic movement, allowing you to develop the necessary skills and technique.

Whether you're a beginner or aiming to achieve unassisted bar muscle ups, the box can be a valuable tool in your training arsenal.

Remember, practice and consistency are key to success in any athletic endeavor. So, grab a box, follow these drills, and watch as you progress toward mastering the bar muscle up.

If you're eager to dive deeper into bar muscle ups, don't forget to check out our free training guide, available at

Your journey to bar muscle up greatness starts here!

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