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Chin Up Max Review

“My pull ups suck”.  How many times have you (or did you) say that to yourself in the first weeks and months of your program? I know I did. Pull ups are hard, man! And they’re even harder when you’re doing them right and isolating the back without (or with minimal) help of your arms. And while a chair can work, chairs do allow for a cheating loophole in that you can put more weight on your leg to get you up than you may really need.

Of course, chairs were all I used until I gave the Chin Up Max a try. Does it deliver? Here’s the review:

Chin Up Max: Reviewed

With a plastic bar clip attached to three rubber tubes leading into a stirrup, the Chin Up Max promises to help you increase your pull up count while still making you work for those extra reps. Per the literature and safety instructions that come with the chin-up max, when the foot stirrup is adjusted to the maximum height of 3 feet, the Chin-Up Assist provides about 35 pounds of assistance per band. If you use all three cables, you’ll receive just over 100 pounds assistance.

The price of the Chin Up Max is $39.00.

PROS:

Portable: With just rubber tubing, a clip and a stirrup to worry about, this thing goes anywhere. Fit it into your gym bag or into your overnight suitcase to break out at the hotel gym, the Chin Up Max packs easily folded or just laid flat.

Adjustable Resistance: Using a strap to shorten or extend the length of the Chin Up Max gives you the tension that’s best fitted to you. Need “a little” help? Loosen the strap. Need more? Tighten up the strap to give you more support.  The adjustment is easy and works just like the straps to tighten up a backpack. Easy.

Supportive… But Not Too Supportive: The one drawback with using a chair to help work out a few extra pull ups is the fact the chair doesn’t give- it’s solidly planted and allows you to step on it if needed. The Chin Up Max stretches, giving you support and helping you up, but not so much you stop working for it and go through the motions. On the the negative descent, it’s virtually all you– allowing a focus on a “slow, controlled down”.

Easy To Use: It doesn’t get much simpler. Just slide the top clip onto your bar and you’re good to go.

CONS:

Clip and Unclip: One drawback to having the chin-up max clip in to your pull up bar is that it must be unclipped if you want to do pullups obstruction free. I’ll clip my chin up max in when I “can’t do no more” but having it hanging there while doing a pull up if you’re not using it to help at that point can be annoying. For example, in Asylum‘s Strength workout there’s a two minute pyramid push up/pull up set (a set of moves where you do a pull up, then push up, then two pull ups, two pushups, etc.) that begs for the chin up max and I was brushing past it on my up and down to pushups. Not a big deal but something that did stick out.

Might not work for heavier users: If you’re up in the 230+ range, the elasticity of the bands may not support your weight. 

CONCLUSION:

While I tossed in a couple cons, these are pretty minor complaints overall. Fact is, it works. I’m a 85 pound dude and I used the Chin Up Max with three bands and could noticeably pound out more pullups after failure. What I enjoy most is the fact it allows you to descend on a negative without offering assistance, while on the up, you can feel some of the load lightened to the point you can punch out a few more pull ups.

If the chin up max sounds like something that can help you as it has me, you can buy it here for $39.00.

If you’re wondering how to further amp up your workouts or have any questions, feel free to email me at dan@howdoigetfit.com or make me your free Beachbody coach here

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