This week we had a guest, Sam from @AbsonFire, who was willing to try out one of our “monkeying around” WODs. He wanted to follow one of my bread and butter routines for mastering the bars. The routine allows one to easily master fluid movement across monkey bars. Thus within a month of practice you will be gliding across the monkey bars like an acrobat.

Moreover the protocol can be applied to race scenarios, as well as build the extraordinary power, grip strength and endurance.

The protocol goes like this:

  • Wide grip pullups 4 x 8
  • Monkeying around on monkeybars. The rig we worked on is approx. 10m long, and we did 5 sets of forward movement as well as 5 sets of lateral monkey bar movement (see the video below).
  • TRX body pulls. 4 x 8. make sure your thumbs touch your nips at the highest point
  • High reach pullups. For this you will need something to reach for above your pullup bar, e.g. another bar (just like the one we have in the video), a wall etc. 3 x 12 alternating arms (6 reps per arm)
  • Lastly the neutral grip – side-to-side pullups (across the horizontal bar) 4 x 8 (4 reps each side).


This probably sounds tad complex to some, so here’s a quick demo:


Sam, despite getting a few extra callouses,  did enjoy this fast paced, extremely upper body demanding routine. I challenge you to give it a go too.

Note that for less advanced athletes you should use assisted pullup machines, bands and any supportive gear you require.