Loading barbells and slinging dumbbells may be the first things that come to mind when you think about building an impressive upper body, but heavy iron isn’t your only ticket to a stacked torso. This bodyweight-only circuit uses compound movements, time under tension and savagely high volume to add serious size to your chest, back and arms.
Hit start on a timer and at the beginning of each minute, work your way through the following bodyweight trifecta. Once you’ve completed all three, rest for the remaining time until the clock tells you to go again. Don’t rush through each round – pay special attention to your form and tempo to maximise muscle gain. Complete 20 minutes for a total of 240 skin-splitting reps. Let’s go...
1. Pull-up x 2
Grasp a pull-up bar with an overhand grip over shoulder width apart, lift your feet from the floor, hanging freely with straight arms. (A) Pull yourself up by flexing the elbows whilst pinching your shoulder blades together. When your chin passes the bar, (B) pause before lowering to the starting position over a 4 second count.
2. Dips x 4
Jump up on two parallel bars with your palms facing inward and your arms straight (A). Bend at the elbows and slowly lower yourself over a 4 second count until your elbows are at right angles, ensuring they don’t flare outward (B). Drive yourself back up to the top and repeat.
3. Push-ups x 6
Drop into a plank position, with your core tight and hands stacked below your shoulders (A), slowly bend your elbows to bring your chest to the floor under control (B). Keep your elbows close to your body as you push back up explosively.
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