What is a dips exercise?

Wondering what are dips exercises? As the name suggests, a dips exercise involves lowering down your body while your hands hold on to parallel bars. 

The motion in a dips exercise is that your hands push down at the side of your body. To understand it better, you can compare this to the movement involved in a pushup where you push horizontally and the movement is away from your body.

What are the different types of dips exercises and how are they done?

There are different types of dips exercises- chest dips exercise and tricep dips exercise. While all these exercises target your delts, chest, triceps and back, certain dips target the chest and some target the triceps more. This depends on the position that you take. 

These different types of dips exercise have several variations. Here is a detailed step by step guide to the most effective types of dips exercise:

  1. Bench dips exercise: As the name suggests, a bench dips exercise is done while sitting at the edge of a bench. This is an excellent exercise to make your chest, triceps, and shoulders stronger. They also work as an effective back dips exercise. 

  • Sit on the edge of a bench with your legs stretched out.
  • Place your hands on the edge of the bench while gripping it with your fingers.
  • Now push your body up in a swift movement.
  • Follow this by lowering your body straight down while keeping your elbows back.

  1. Chair dips exercise: This is a seated dips exercise, quite similar to bench dips with one difference that of using a chair instead of a bench. Since it doesn’t require a bench, it forms the perfect dips workout at home. This is a great bodyweight exercise that builds strength in your arms and shoulders. Here is how to do this dips exercise at home:

  • Sit on the edge of a chair and grip its edge using your fingers. Keep your legs extended and your feet hip-width apart while touching the floor with your heels.
  • Press into your hands and lift your body swiftly off the chair while sliding forward.
  • Lower your body until your elbows are bent between angles of 45-90 degrees.¬†
  • Push yourself back in the starting position slowly until your arms are straight.¬†

  1. Bar dips exercise: In a dip bar workout, you need to grip the dip bar. This exercise works as an effective triceps exercise as well as a dips chest workout and targets your major and minor pectorals. At the same time, it also targets your delts, rhomboids, levator scapulae, and teres major. Here’s how you can do this chest dips exercise:

  • Grab two parallel bars while supporting your weight in a neutral position.
  • Extend your arms as much as you can.
  • Put your chin on your chest and bend your knees at an angle of 90-degrees.¬†
  • Incline your upper body to the front.
  • Lower your body while moving your elbows out to the sides.¬†
  • Come back to the starting position.

  1. Leg dips exercise: Perfect for people with advanced exercise experience, a leg dips exercise involves using one leg for support and resistance and is done without equipment. It is an effective arm dips exercise and also works on your shoulders, chest and triceps. Here’s how you can do this dips exercise at home:

  • Sit on the floor with your knees bent. Keep your feet flat on the floor.¬†
  • Place your hands on the floor behind you and swiftly raise your hips.
  • Support your body weight on your hands and feet during this motion.¬†
  • Now lift one leg off the floor and bend your elbows and lower body.
  • Touch the floor with your glutes and press back up while straightening your arms.
  • Return to the starting position and do this leg dips exercise with the other leg.

  1. Bodyweight dips exercise: This is an effective compound exercise that strengthens your shoulders, chest, and triceps and activates your muscles. It also works as a great arm dips exercise. Here’s how you can do this exercise:

  • Grab the dip station handles and lift yourself slowly till the time your body is straight. Bend your knees slightly.
  • Bend your elbows and lower your body till your upper arms are parallel to the ground.
  • Return to the starting position.

What are the benefits of a dips exercise?

Dips exercise are one of the best compound exercises that take your health and fitness notches higher. Whether it is a dip bar workout or one that’s done using a bench, here are some great reasons to include different types of dips exercises in your workout routine:

  • These exercises are extremely customisable. You can either do dip bar exercises or use a bench, add equipment such as r√©sistance bands or weights. The possibilities to make this exercise easier or more challenging are endless.

  • Adding different types of dips exercises in your workout regime helps build serious upper-body mass. Dips chest workout has several amazing benefits such as an improved posture, better cardiovascular health, and enhanced metabolism.¬†

  • Including seated dips exercise in your day helps build your core muscles. This leads to better mobility and range of motion helping you do daily activities faster and better.¬†

  • Back dips exercises are very beneficial for people who lead a sedentary life. This exercise cures postural problems and reduces back pain and stiffness.

Which are some common dips exercise mistakes to avoid?

Here is how to do a dips workout at home safely avoiding the common mistakes:

  • Position your elbows properly during your dips workout at home to prevent muscular strain.

  • Don‚Äôt go too high or too low in your dips bar exercise. Always make a 90-degree angle with your forearms and elbows during the arms dip exercise.¬†


Though they may look simple, dip bar exercises and their other forms need a lot of focus and precision for you to gain their benefits. It is essential to learn the techniques of dips exercise at home from an experienced trainer to avoid injuries.


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August 29, 2022

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