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Hardy Evans

Ring Dip Progressions vs. Weighted Dips

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Hardy Evans

I'm curious what the general opinions are regarding the pros and cons of working advanced ring dip progressions (Bulgarian->RTO->RTO with varying degrees of lean) versus working weighted dips.

 

In particular, Steven Low mentions in his book that weighted dips have a strong transfer to the planche, and that a 2x bodyweight dip should take one pretty close if not all the way to a PB/Floor straddle planche. Do ring dips have the same benefits in terms of assisting with planche work? 

 

Also, what are your opinions regarding general strength gains and preparation for higher level skills through RTO Dips vs weighted dips?

 

Thanks for the help!

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Mikkel Ravn

I think that if obtaining a straddle planche was as easy as working up to double bodyweight dips, than many more people would be able to demonstrate planches, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

 

I don't think I've ever heard of someone achieving a quality planche without a very planche specific program, but that said, I guess weighted dips could be a useful addition to such programming.

 

If you're interested in these matters, I'd recommend that you check out the foundation series here.

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Connor Davies

Weighted dips have a 1:1 carryover to bench pressing.  So whatever your bodyweight+weight added is in a dip, that's what you can bench.

 

I can't imagine weighted dips have much if any carryover to planche though.  They're lacking the core strength element, and a planche is a straight arm exercise while dips are a bent arm exercise.

 

Working dip variations is good!  Russian dips in particular are fantastic, as they are crucial in learning how to muscle-up.  Bulgarian dips are good as well for active flexibility and preparing the shoulder for iron cross training.

 

As for RTO dips....  They get my utmost respect.  Seriously, those things are freaking hard.  I'm much more impressed by a set of RTO dips than I am by weighted dips.

 

Final thought on weighted dips: You can't reach full depth with them like you can with unweighted dips.  It places too much strain on the tendons in the shoulder.  While this is something that you should strive for with unweighted dips (indeed, it's a valuable conditioning tool) when you start adding weight the possibility for injury goes up and the benefits go down.  If you do decide to do weighted dips, don't go past parallel, okay?

 

Oh, and weighted dips have the potential to make ring dips easier.  The extra weight increases net downwards force on the rings, stopping them from sliding around so much.  So there's really no point doing them on rings.

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Andrew Long

Having a 2 x weighted dip will not bring you anywhere near a planche.... The o ly thing it will help with is the shoulder strength required for it but a planche requires a lot more than just strong shoulders.

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Brian Li

I have Steven's book and he never said that a 2x body weight dip will give you a straddle planche. He just said they are around the same level of difficulty.

 

Weighted dips have a 1:1 carryover to bench pressing.  So whatever your bodyweight+weight added is in a dip, that's what you can bench.

 

I can't imagine weighted dips have much if any carryover to planche though.  They're lacking the core strength element, and a planche is a straight arm exercise while dips are a bent arm exercise.

 

Working dip variations is good!  Russian dips in particular are fantastic, as they are crucial in learning how to muscle-up.  Bulgarian dips are good as well for active flexibility and preparing the shoulder for iron cross training.

 

As for RTO dips....  They get my utmost respect.  Seriously, those things are freaking hard.  I'm much more impressed by a set of RTO dips than I am by weighted dips.

 

Final thought on weighted dips: You can't reach full depth with them like you can with unweighted dips.  It places too much strain on the tendons in the shoulder.  While this is something that you should strive for with unweighted dips (indeed, it's a valuable conditioning tool) when you start adding weight the possibility for injury goes up and the benefits go down.  If you do decide to do weighted dips, don't go past parallel, okay?

 

Oh, and weighted dips have the potential to make ring dips easier.  The extra weight increases net downwards force on the rings, stopping them from sliding around so much.  So there's really no point doing them on rings.

Weighted dips don't have a 1:1 carryover to bench press. You can also do weighted dips with full ROM if you have sufficient mobility and strong shoulders.

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Connor Davies

Weighted dips don't have a 1:1 carryover to bench press. You can also do weighted dips with full ROM if you have sufficient mobility and strong shoulders.

If you have real good shoulders maybe, but if you're constantly pursuing maximum strength you're still running the risk of injury.

 

Assume for a second that dips have a 1:1 carryover to bench.  (I know you disagree, but everyone I know who benches agrees with me here) The heaviest raw bench is something like 700lbs.  If I strapped 500lb to myself and did a full ROM dip, I would probably blow out the tendons in my shoulders.

 

Yes, some gymnasts can do crazy things like german hang swings which probably equate to the same load on the shoulders.  But we're not those guys....

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Jan Reipert

there is definitely no fixed ratio between dips and bench presses. i know people dipping in the range of 40-50kg added weight who never benched more than 100kg. i used to dip 5 reps with 70kg around my waist (80kg bw)  and i was nowhere near 150kg on the bench (130kg PR).

 

there is also not just one kind of bench press: bridge/no bridge, bounced/paused, wide grip/narrow grip etc.

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Joshua Slocum

As a rule of thumb, if there exist more difficult variations of a bodyweight movement, you're probably going to get more benefit from progressing to harder movements than you would from adding weight to an easier movement. Moving to more difficult movements provides several benefits: 

 

- mastering a wide a variety of movements improves your kinesthetic intelligence, especially when you're progressing to ever more complex patterns of movement. 

- some movements will emphasize different muscle groups to varying degrees - varying your work will help to balance your development. 

 

You can not easily jump from heavily weighted dips to much more advanced pushing motions (e.g. rings HSPU). Such movements are not just physically more difficult, but also more neurologically complex. Weighted dips are strictly inferior in comparison to progressing through more and more advanced pushing motions. 

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Brian Li

If you have real good shoulders maybe, but if you're constantly pursuing maximum strength you're still running the risk of injury.

 

Assume for a second that dips have a 1:1 carryover to bench.  (I know you disagree, but everyone I know who benches agrees with me here) The heaviest raw bench is something like 700lbs.  If I strapped 500lb to myself and did a full ROM dip, I would probably blow out the tendons in my shoulders.

 

Yes, some gymnasts can do crazy things like german hang swings which probably equate to the same load on the shoulders.  But we're not those guys....

I actually found the opposite from personal experience and from others, that there is no 1:1 carryover between weighted dips and bench press.

 

It's possible to get full ROM safely in weighted dips as I've done it before with a 45 lb plate (you did not specify the amount of weight), but if you meant something like 2x body weight then I'm not really sure. I speculate that if someone's shoulders are capable of dipping double body weight and they have good shoulder mobility then they should be fine with full ROM.

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Connor Davies

....It's possible to get full ROM safely in weighted dips as I've done it before with a 45 lb plate (you did not specify the amount of weight), but if you meant something like 2x body weight then I'm not really sure.....

Ah no worries.  I more meant if you were using them as your primary strength tool, or if you wanted to push the envelope to really see how heavy you could get with them.

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Aaro Helander

I can dip a lot more weight (bodyweight of 200 lbs + 170 lbs) than I can bench. Perhaps I could decline bench some more. Perhaps some of this has to do with mental properties, since there is no risk of a horrible death when dipping, whereas benching alone with max weight is a lot more risky.

 

Some more advanced lifters might not have such mental blocks.

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Connor Davies

Some more advanced lifters might not have such mental blocks.

And I can imagine the barbell crowd would simply feel more comfortable benching than dipping, which may skew results.

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Aaro Helander

And I can imagine the barbell crowd would simply feel more comfortable benching than dipping, which may skew results.

It could also be that people with gymnastics background tend to have better shoulder health for dipping, therefore being able to do more weight.

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Brian Li

Always have a spotter when doing heavy bench pressing.

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Oliver Schnarf
On 1/16/2014 at 9:53 AM, Connor Davies said:

Weighted dips have a 1:1 carryover to bench pressing.  So whatever your bodyweight+weight added is in a dip, that's what you can bench.

No they don't. I am not a gymnast, I am a weight lifter (15+years) and dips and bench are always part of my strength routine weekly. There is a carry over from weighted dips to bench, but it is not 1:1. I WISH it was 1:1. It's MUCH harder to increase your bench than it is to add weight to a dip. To give you an idea, total dip weight is somewhere between flat bench and decline bench. For example, a total dip weight of 150kg x 10-12reps corresponds to a single max flat bench of 145-150kg and it goes without saying, that bench press will involve a powerlifter's back arch to reduce the rom AND leg drive.

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Alessandro Mainente

Guys please it is 3 years ago discussion, there is no reason to resurrect it again.

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