Top 10 Dips Exercises

Reviewed by Rakesh Rathod, Certified Personal Trainer
By Shirin Mehdi

With all of us becoming more and more health-conscious, regular exercise along with a well-balanced diet has become the priority for many! Amidst all the various types of exercises and workout routines, dip exercises are quite challenging and effective as well! They may not look like fun, but when done regularly can give you amazing results! There are many ways and variations of dip exercises that you can choose as per the place, convenience, and personal preference! If you reach a certain level of comfort with one particular type, you can either increase the number of reps or move on to a more advanced variation! You can keep challenging and motivating yourself to do more that way! So those of you who are looking to up your workout game, continue to read on!

1. Bench dips:

Stand with your back facing the bench and hold it on the edge. Rest your heel on the ground or put your legs on another bench of the same height (this is more complicated) and then use your arm strength to lift yourself up. This strengthens your triceps and shoulders.

2. Parallel bar dips:

Stand between a pair of parallel bars and hold them. Put your entire body weight on your hands and lift yourself up until your hands are completely straight and then lower your body till your arms form 90 degrees. They remarkably help in strengthening the chest and triceps and broadening the shoulders.

3. Straight bar dips:

It is more difficult than the parallel bars and has more benefits as well. Place your hands on one bar which comes relatively above your chest and raise yourself up till your hands are completely stretched. These chest dips also work on your triceps and give you a widened upper back.

4. Korean dips:

This is a variation to the straight bar dip in which the bars are behind your back. It’s more challenging than the straight bars and requires full-body strength. In this exercise, you also work on your lower back, abs, and glutes to prevent yourself from swinging. This is definitely the toughest dip exercise listed here.

5. Plyometric dips:

This is a variation that can be added to any dip being performed. If you take the bench dips for example, then while pushing yourself up, you just move vigorously and lift your hands and legs up, and return back to the same position. This helps your triceps muscles to achieve power and stamina.

6. Ring dips:

In this, you lift yourself up with your hands placed firmly on rings instead of a single bar. The rings make it extremely difficult to stabilize and thus more effort is needed. It works up the whole body but especially the arms, shoulder, and abdomen.

7. Rucksack weighted dips:

You can also add weights to your dips. Wear a rucksack and add plates in it. By doing this the body weight increases and more pressure is put on the shoulders or triceps or chest. Thus they show better results.

8. Belt + chain weighted dips:

This is the best way to do weighted dips. Wear a dipping belt and through the chain attach plates to it. This increases body weight from the center and works best for the chest and the abdomen.

9. Dumbbell between legs:

This is another form of weighted dips in which a 10 – 15 kg dumbbell is held between the feet while doing dips. This makes it more difficult for the body to rise and thus gives better results.

10. V bar dips:

Here you have the freedom of varying the width of the grip and you can also change hand positions by facing them inwards or outwards. They also strengthen your upper body like all other dips.

Dip exercises are a perfect way to tone your muscles and build strength and stamina. The exercises discussed above work on the shoulder fronts (anterior deltoid and medial deltoid), triceps, chest, glutes, lower back, abs, arms, abdomen, and upper body. Moreover, parallel bar dips and straight bar dips help you broaden your shoulders and widen your upper back, respectively. However, most of these exercises are tough to nail. The key is to start slowly and maintain consistency to achieve perfection. If you feel pain while doing a particular exercise, stop doing it and go ahead with the next.

Frequently Asked Questions

What workouts go with dips?

If you are doing a full-body strength workout, you need to include exercises in your routine that target your legs, push muscles (chest, shoulders, triceps), pull muscles (back, biceps, grip), and your core. Dips cover your push muscles. You can do squats and deadlifts for legs, move to dips for push muscles, pull-ups for pull muscles, and end with planks for your core.

Are dips better than push-ups?

Dips and push-ups are exercises that target the same muscles but show varying results. Push-ups are great for people who want to maintain good overall fitness and endurance, building on all the push muscles. Dips and its variations are for people who want more sculpted results in their tricep area.

Are dips good for arm growth?

Dips are great for people who want bulky, sculpted arms.

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A jack of many trades and a master of some, Shirin is a writer, a fashion designer, and a chef... more

Rakesh Rathod

(Certified Personal Trainer)
Rakesh Rathod is a certified fitness trainer and yoga instructor with more than 20 years of experience in the fitness... more