Dips are a great exercise to add to your at-home workout routine. You can do them with or without a bar, and they’ll help you build strength in your chest, arms and lower back. There are many different variations of the dip, though a simple trick to getting the most out of the exercise is to get a deep stretch during each rep.
As the name suggests, chair dips are done with a chair as the supporting object. They’re a less challenging variation of regular dips, which use a parallel bar, and they’re an excellent option for those who don’t have access to bars or other equipment.
Using a chair gives you a more accessible version of the dip that works the same muscles as standard dips. This makes them a good choice for people who aren’t as strong or are unable to perform standard dips due to shoulder problems or other limitations.
Step 1: Grab the edge of a chair with your hands and grip it just behind your hips. You’ll need to keep your feet about hip-width apart and your heels on the floor in this position. Look straight ahead with your chin up as you perform the dip.
Inhale and bend your elbows, lowering yourself slowly until your butt touches the ground or you feel tension in the chest muscles. Stop when your elbows are bent at 90-degree angles. Exhale and push yourself back up, returning to the starting position.
Modifications (Beginner): Walk your feet in closer to the chair so that you’re working more of your upper body than just your triceps. This allows you to work your chest as well as your triceps, while also keeping your legs in an easier position for the entire movement.
Adding Resistance: The most effective way to increase the difficulty of chair dips is by using a weight vest. These are available from fitness equipment retailers and are designed for athletes who want to improve their performance simply and quickly with minimal effort.
Level 3: For a harder dip, you can elevate the chair or bench to an elevated height. This will require more effort to complete each rep, but it will increase your challenge and improve the results of your triceps dips.
You can also elevate the seat of the chair or bench so that you’re pressing more of your body weight, increasing the intensity of the dip. The additional resistance will make the triceps dip more difficult, but it’s an added bonus that you can do at home and with any type of seating surface.
For this version, you’ll need a sturdy bench or step that is elevated to a similar height as the chair. You can even use two chairs, facing each other, so that you’re pressing more of your weight into the air as you do the triceps dip.
The triceps are important in everyday movements that involve extending the elbow and forearm, such as reaching overhead or lifting grocery bags. They are also responsible for stabilizing the shoulder joint, so they help protect your shoulders and prevent injury. They’re also responsible for enhancing your martial arts punching and grappling strength.