Parallettes Exercises for Straight Arm Strength

Audio Title: Parallettes Exercises for Straight
Arm Strength Audio Duration: 0:08:07
Number of Speakers: 1 Transcript Hi. This is Ryan from Gold Medal Bodies. Today
I would like to talk a little bit about straight arm strength, what it is, why it’s important,
and as well I’m going to give you one movement that you can use to help you in your straight
arm training. When we work out, typically we use a lot of
bent arm movements, movements like a chin-up, like a push-up, movements where we bend our
arm. It’s pretty obvious, right? Now when we’re referring to straight arm
training, what we’re talking about are particularly holds and for today’s video, I’m going
to be referring to the parallettes, straight arm work that we perform on the parallettes.
So an example of a straight arm hold would be the top position of a push-up with your
arms locked out. Another example could be for example in L-sit.
That is also where you have your arms locked out. A lot of people miss what we’re trying
to accomplish when we’re working on our straight arm training and so that’s what
we’re going to talk about a little bit. Why is this important? Well, if you want to work towards advanced
movements, and let’s talk about the parallettes. Today we will just refer to the parallettes.
Even though you can’t perform these movements on the floor or even with rings, if you’re
working towards an advanced movement, you can’t just jump up and try that advanced
movement. It’s going to be tempting to do that but you always have to focus on working
on the basics. Building a foundation in order to progress up and building a proper foundation
is especially true in our straight arm work. If you don’t have this proper foundation,
if you don’t have the basics of straight arm strength training down, and you try and
perform some of these advanced movements, you can hurt yourself and that’s not what
we want. So that’s why it’s very important to make
sure that you use progressions in order to get you to these advanced movements. Now growing up, my sport of choice was gymnastics.
So I spent a lot of time in the straight arm position. We would be drilling this pretty
much every practice but it wasn’t that we were just focusing on straightening our arms. It was that form, focusing on the basics,
making sure that whatever movement we were performing, we were keeping good form and
when I was young, I trained a lot in order to make sure that I had these techniques down. However, I took a huge break from my training.
I took a really long break and so even me, I have to go back and work on the basics of
the straight arm strength training in order to make sure that I don’t get injured and
that I’m doing things properly. So what do we do? Where do we start? Well,
a good example to kind of feel if you’re doing something properly and making sure that
you have your arms locked out is by using a chair, a chair with arms on it. So you put your hands on the chair and you
push down and really push, push, push with your feet on the ground, raising your body
up and locking out your arms. Now hopefully you feel this not just in your triceps but
also in your biceps and the front of your arm. A lot of people when performing a movement
like a plank hold, the top position of a push-up, won’t feel it in the front of their arms
and their biceps. The reason for that, it’s because they don’t have that elbow pit turned
forward. So when we’re working on straight arm strength
training, this is the key point and this is something that we’re going to look at today
and I’m going to give you just a very basic movement, plank hold as a matter of fact. But we’re going to lean with it, making
sure to keep our elbow pits forward. What this is going to do is help us get a feel
for where we need to be when we’re working on our strength training in regards to straight
arms. Straight arm movements and holds might be
quite uncomfortable for a lot of you but that just means that you don’t have the straight
arm strength just yet. Don’t worry. You can get it and this is an exercise that you
can use to help you get that straight arm strength. This plank lean looks pretty simple but looks
can really be deceiving and if you’re doing this properly, it should be tough. This is
a movement, this plank lean, this hold part of me is what I use to help people in working
towards the advanced movements like the Planche and even working up to being able to do even
more advanced skills like straddle hold, press to a handstand, lower down to Planche and
movements where not just a hold but a hold in movement in motion is necessary. Without this plank lean, this starting point,
if you don’t have this down, you’re not going to be able to get where you need to
go properly. So let’s take a look at this plank lean. Make sure that we have it down
and use it to help us get strong in our straight arm training. The plank lean begins in a push-up position,
making sure that we squeeze our body and rotate our elbow pits forward. From here, we’re
simply going to lean forward. Key point is to make sure that when performing this, that
we keep our elbow pits facing forward. This is very important. Really focus on pushing down into the parallettes
as you lean your body forward. Make sure your hips aren’t too high and also make sure
that your hips don’t sag. Remember, lock those arms out, keeping your elbow pits forward
and lean forward as far as you can. Once you get the hang of this or in other
words you can hold it for an extended period of time, you can start working on taking one
leg up off of the ground. Make sure that you’re not raising your hip
higher on one side. We want to keep our hips flat to the ground and extend our leg while
keeping that forward lean with the elbow pits facing forward. In the beginning I suggest focusing on holding
this for up to three seconds. Once you get there, add a couple of seconds to it and each
time, focus on your form. If you feel that your form is decreasing while holding this,
cut down on the seconds, go back, and reevaluate your form. Work on mastering this plank lean and it’s
really going to help build that solid foundation necessary to help you progress towards those
more advanced movements. I suggest working a plank lean on the parallettes
in the beginning. Once you get comfortable with that, you can feel free to take it down
to the floor. I’m going to cover in the next video why
I feel that working on the parallettes before you go down to the ground is important and
will actually help you to get better in the tricks that you’re working towards. So remember, if you want to get those advanced
movements, you got to have the proper straight arm strength. Make sure you start at the beginning.
Work on those progressions. Once you get the foundation down, you can start adding things
on top of that. But don’t just try and jump to those advanced movements. That’s a sure
way to get frustrated and also injured. So be sure to head on over to
Sign up with the Posse so that you can get more free training videos like this one. [End of transcript]

63 Replies to “Parallettes Exercises for Straight Arm Strength”

  1. I'm a breakdancer, and boy did I get my hard share of jumping into advanced stuff before I was physically ready. Back then, I simply didn't consider that technique was a component safety and advancement. No one did, and that's just the way the culture is (although it is improving). I love your videos, exercises, and steps to completing them safely.

    btw, great speaking and explanation skills

  2. Thanks and glad that you liked this. Yes, unfortunately there are a lot of people out there who jump up and try to perform advanced skills before they are ready. I know that I used to try and do it myself way back when!
    It would be great to get more people to understand the concept of gradual progression in order to get better while keeping injuries down.
    And thanks for thinking that I have good speaking skills. First time anyone has ever said that to me. Ha!

  3. For me this is a lot harder to do than straddle planche press to HS because of shoulder flexilibty =/

    And I can't do the splits either…

    Is my form good on my channel?

  4. Great video, thanks for posting. Question, how long should I do this, how many sets , can i do this everyday? Before or after workout

  5. Sorry for the late reply. Yes, if getting the planche is your main goal focusing on both of those is OK as long as you work up to it.

  6. In the beginning a suggest starting with just a couple of seconds for a few sets and then working up the time held and the number of sets. Up to 15 seconds for 5 sets. Then you can progress to the Low Frog hold. I'd give yourself a day of rest between workouts if you are also doing other training.

  7. Your planche is looking good. Keep working on it and you'll get it. Same goes with flexibility. There is no magic pill. Just diligent work and the desire to get it.

  8. You can give it a shot. Just make sure you're recovering fully and not duplicating efforts on the rings and bars too much. If you start having pains, back off.

  9. Does it help make the l sit go higher? I mean i can hold a pretty good l sit for at least 10 seconds. Also is rotating the elbow pits forward a preference or is it part of perfect form? I know it helps trains the strength.

  10. Is your goal a higher L-sit (why?) or is it to move better and get stronger? The correct arm position will build your arm/shoulder strength.

  11. My goal is to get into a V-Sit, which i cannot do and to be able to hold it longer. Also thanks for the info on the rotating elbow pits forward. I have been doing tucked planche holds with elbow pits facing to the side. I will correct my form. Thanks again!

  12. Very helpful explanation! Did not realize until now the importance of straight arm strength. The correct arm rotation really makes a difference!

  13. Those are my custom Pbarz from Dusty. Go to our home page and look under products -> pbarz and you can find all the info.

  14. Sure you can use those as a substitute. But I really recommend always using the proper tool for the job and you can't beat a solid set of pbars for pbar work. ; )

  15. No, not really. In fact, some places suggest keeping the pits facing each other because they feel that it's safer. Sure, it might be safer, but it isn't helping you to get better straight arm strength.

  16. It could be because being up off of the ground on the pbars allows you to better retract and depress your shoulders forcing you to open up and engage your core more. However, honestly, it could be any number of things.

  17. Cannot find the comment button! Hey how often do you practice this a week? I have done mostly free weights most of my life but would like to try this, but know the risks of over training. So with that in mind how often does one do this per week?

  18. Hello!
    If i understood correctly, by keeping our elbow pits facing forward, we are using the Latissimus Dorsi to brace the arm in conjunction with the shoulders and chest, correct?
    When we go for vertical movements like pullup or handstand, the usual is to keep the elbow pits facing in an angle towards your face instead of facing the front like in horizontal moves. Is this the correct way to perform these moves?


  19. Yes, keeping the elbow pit forward helps lock out the arm and better engage the lats. And also yes, your elbow pits will naturally turn in on moves like the HS and pullup.

  20. I see. I have another question. When on sections of movement when the elbows are beyond the neck line, we are still to keep trying to turn them out so we can recruit our lats, correct?

    I also assume that at this point we should be also supporting our shoulders with the back muscles, by trying to make the shoulder blades touch other (figure of speech, they should not touch).

  21. The main point for turning elbow pits out is as a cue for shoulder external rotation which improves shoulder stability by activating the rotator cuff optimally. In pullups and such as you describe it's not so much shoulder blade retraction (pulling them together) as shoulder blade depression (pulling them down to your hips), though they will naturally retract with depression if you maintain a good posture.

  22. Hi, I have built my own parallettes out of PVC. They are about 1 foot off of the ground and the diameter is 1.5 inches. However, my main question is: Where should your hand rest on the bar? After I practice these my hands are pretty sore and I can't do much more. How exactly should I be gripping it? Also, you say before moving on you should be able to to hold this for a "good amount of time". How long should I be able to hold this before I can feel confident? Love the vids, thanks!

  23. Hey Jorden. I can't post the link however, go to our YouTube channel and search for "Parallette Training Basics – Proper Arm Placement". I cover your question and more about hand and arm placement.
    A very general idea would be able to comfortably hold a position for 30 to 60 seconds with good form.

  24. You're totally right, when I saw this video, I trained and totally improved my hand stand. Thanks man

  25. I have a question concerning the straight and locked arms. Especially in fintess and bodybuilding, you always hear that you should not lock your arms completely out (e.g. when doing benchpress) because that puts too much pressure on the elbow joint. When watching gymnastic and bodyweight training videos, it is always recommended to lock out the arms.
    As I don't want to damage my joints, I would be really happy about an explanation of you guys 🙂

  26. As long as you work intelligently you should be fine. Like everything, start with the basics and gradually work towards the more advanced moves.

  27. When you accomplish this you will feel so great yourself .I work currently to perform a planch and mussel up.It is taking a lot practice do not give up.Stand up and do it again it is not overestimate until you master it.

  28. What would be your suggestion for the amount of time you should be able to hold this and how many sets? One thing I know I can do if I don't lose my balance is a frog stand for at least a minute. But I guess since I don't have the straight arm strength I haven't been able to progress to the advanced frog stand. I'm still new to programming, so a general idea of what time limits I should be looking to reach would be helpful.

  29. Great point about the biceps. I've been trying to explain to a few buddies of mine why they should be feeling tension on their biceps when locking out. For quite some time now, I've been unsuccessful, because of their persistent habit of attributing everything to shoulder strength. Maybe your video will finally help them understand it better.

  30. Okay,
    I was making HUGE progress on the bars and then I started noticing pain in my forearm. It persisted and then really flared up two days ago and I figured out that I've got forearm splints (shin splints in the arm).
    It is debilitating: no pull-ups, handstands, or even opening a jar.
    Any advice on rehab or guidelines for resting the injury? I'm thinking I'll take a month or two off, but who knows.

  31. Hi, this would really help me with my progression, where did you get your p bars? i really need some but cant find any like yours 🙂

  32. Glad to know even the pro's take a long hiatus sometimes also.
      How long was your training gap?
    Also is it always improper when I see people doing planche moves with the fingers pointing forward

  33. Hi Ryan in the planche lean and in the full planche. Are your biceps contracted? are they the ones that take the load? I mean, you do not rest in your elbow joint, isn't it? I have been searching around about the engagement of the biceps in this kind of positions, but I still have not reached to any conclusion. The pictures of gymnasts with overextended elbows confused me, make me think that they rest a little bit in their joints.

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