What would be a good progression to transition from where I am currently: Horizontal Ring Row and Ring Dip to a full ring muscle up (As opposed to a bar muscleup, which is an entirely different focus/movement)?

This question is unique as it only focuses on the progression required for a ring-specific muscle up. Other questions here considered bars.

Previous answers can be summarised to: - Practice the transition (what transition? What are the cues/movements?) - Develop strength (I am plenty strong for them).

No-one yet has explained the technique.

  • I disagree with the duplicate vote, because ring muscleups are vastly different from bar ones.
    – Alec
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 20:28
  • @FredrikD that answer really only refers to bar muscle ups.
    – John
    Commented Dec 12, 2016 at 7:55
  • I did not notice the difference. JJ, I reopened it and added a small edit in the body to prevent it being marked again.
    – JohnP
    Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 0:58

2 Answers 2


You will need to learn a few things.

First of all; are you holding the rings correctly? Using a false grip makes a ring muscle up easier, see these images of false grip.

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Secondly; you need to practice the transition movement. You'll need to create some sort of momentum to get your first muscle up done. After that you can start to perfect the movement and use less and less momentum until you can do a strict muscle up.

You have different variations, some people use a swing (note that the person isn't holding the rings correctly in this image):

enter image description here

Whilest others turn the rings inward in other to make the movement easier:

enter image description here

My advice: Try the second technique. It is simply the better way. While the first technique might be easier and get you your muscle up faster, you're also at risk of getting injuries because of the uncontrolled movements you are doing. Even if you use the first technique to get to your first muscle up, you want to work towards a more controlled muscle up.

I hope it helps. If you have any further questions let me know!


If you have access to cable pulls, you can do one arm cable pulls from overhead all the way down to your side, simulating the full muscle-up movement (you may need to sit). This is a great option because it allows the same sort of progressions you would use with other weightlifting, such as 5 sets of 5, rather than trying the max effort it takes most people to do a single muscle-up. By increasing the weight over time, combined with the false grip described in many other places, you will be able to build to a "strict" muscle up with no swing.

Strength is not necessary though, for kipping muscle up, given the proper technique. When you train on the rings, the purpose of the swing is to raise your center of mass before rotating around it. If you can swing high enough (hips to the hands) and time your rotation correctly (the kip), you can raise yourself to the top of the rings almost effortlessly.

Combining some strength with a decent kip is your best bet rather than having either part be flawless.

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