CrossfitExerciseHealth Tips

Pull Up Progressions | Kipping Swing to Butterfly

By May 30, 2016 No Comments

Pull Up Progressions


Pull Up Progressions – Jamie Headon

Over the past two weeks we have shared with you Jamie’s tips on Pull Up Progressions, starting off with the Kipping Swing, progressing to the Kipping Pull Up and moving on to the more complex gymnastic skill, the Butterfly Pull Up. We have compiled the three blogs together to give you one blog as a resource for your own progression through these skills.


Progression 1 – The Kipping Swing

The first step is perfecting the Kipping Swing. If you are interested in developing your core strength, improving your scapular stability or are looking to learn how to do Kipping Pull Ups, then it is crucial to work on your Kipping Swing. Check out the first video of our Pull Up progressions below where Jamie is sharing his tips on how to perfect the Kip with some basic drills that include;

  • Hollow Hold
  • Hollow Rock
  • Hollow Arch
  • Bar Drills

Learn how to do these drills and then start implementing them into your training.

“Don’t break from the hips or the shoulders”



Progression 2 – The Kipping Pull Up

The Kipping pull up is a CrossFit Gymnastics skill. We do not use this skill to build strength, we use it to accumulate an element of gymnastics  volume in our workouts. The kipping pull up done correctly requires a huge amount of core strength and control. To perfect this movement we perform numerous floor drills focused on strengthening the Abbs, glutes and lower back.

As CF Gym we train a lot of strict pulling work which passes over into our gymnastics and Olympic lifting. This includes Scap work, strict pull ups and progressions such as negatives and isometric holds. Before you can do kipping work we make sure all athletes have gone through their strict progressions and have both the mobility and strength in their shoulders to learn the Kipping swing and kipping pull up.

The kipping pull up is a very useful tool and is the first stepping  stone before learning harder progressions such as chest to bar pull ups, bar muscle ups and work on the rings. The kipping pull up is not to be mistaken as our only method of performing pull ups. Strict pull ups are a huge part of strength work which are often not seen in our daily workouts (WOD) but are a big part of our strength piece. Check out the video below on how to perform the Kipping Pull up correctly.



Progression 3 – The Butterfly Pull Up

Moving on from the Kipping Swing and the Kipping Pull Up, we are going to have a look at another gymnastic movement, the Butterfly Pull Up. In CrossFit, your ability to be efficient with exercises and to perform movements quickly has a significant effect on your scores. The Butterfly Pull Up is a gymnastic skill that helps you improve both of these aspects and ultimately helps dramatically improve your WOD times. The final video below shows how to perfect this movement. If there is a particular skill or exercise you would like to learn more about and get Jamie’s tips, let us know!