The Best “Longevity” Exercise There Is…

If you are looking to increase your the health and longevity of your body, then you need to start adding the dead arm hang into your routine. This simple exercise that doesn’t require anything outside of a pull-up bar is multifaceted in how it can be done and it’s benefits.

Not only will you be able to build a stronger upper back, but you can improve the health of your shoulders, increase your grip strength and build a mental toughness in the process.

If you are looking to build strength in your shoulders and upper back, you will want to engage in something called active hanging. This means packing the shoulders by engaging the lats. When packing the shoulders, you will be able to create a gap between your ears and upper arms while hanging.

For improving mobility and health of your shoulders, you can passively hang. That means not engaging the lats and simply hanging loose from the bar. A passive hang will close the gap between your ears and your arms.

When it comes to hanging from a bar, there is something important you need to pay attention to: your grip. While you might instinctively just grab the bar, this can be a recipe for disaster. Holding yourself up with the bar in your fingertips can lead to overload of tendons in the forearms which leads to medial elbow pain, also known as golfer’s elbow.

To avoid this, simply grab the pull-up bar in the palm of your hands and then wrap your fingers around the bar one at a time. This will ensure that your hands are holding onto the bar and not your fingers.

Be sure to watch the video to see the best way to program dead arm hangs into your daily life.

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Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS served as both the head physical therapist and assistant strength coach for the New York Mets. Jeff earned his Masters of Physical Therapy and Bachelor’s of Physioneurobiology from the College of Health Sciences University of Connecticut Storrs. He is a certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).