When I initially set out in this challenge to increase my dip strength I was going to do 4 x 3 week phases. But, like most plans, it didn’t quite play out accordingly.


I had to skip a week of training as I strained my neck and then my wife also gave birth to our second child, so my training went out the window that week as well.


To compensate, I am only going to do 3 phases of training, but I am stoked to have seen some great improvement already.


When I started, my max was adding 60kg to my bodyweight, and in the previous phase I hit 67.5kg, and will shoot to get a minimum of 70kg added from this last phase, which I would be wrapped about.


For the final phase I am going to continue with 2 ‘dip specific’ sessions per week, with 1 sessions having the focus of increasing eccentric strength and the other working explosive power.


My supplementary exercises are going to focus on strengthening lock out of the dips via working on tricep strength


I also attended a course recently where I learnt structurally that my upper back was incredibly weak comparatively and it could actually be my back strength that limits pressing strength. It is this reason that I have also put a focus on my upper back exercises as well for this phase


Weekly Structure


Mon – Upper Body A

Tue – Legs

Wed – OFF

Thurs – Upper Body B

Fri – Arms

Sat/Sun – OFF or Conditioning


Training Prg’s


Upper Body A


A1. Serrano Press 4 x 4 reps

B1. Dips 7 sets of 2 reps with 8s ECCENTRIC

Rest 120s

B2. Ischemic Lat Pull Down 7 sets of 3 with 8s ECCENTRIC

Rest 120s

C1. Standing Behind the Neck Press 4 x 6-8 reps

Rest 90s

C2. Seated Rope Row to Throat 4 x 8-10 reps

Rest 90s


Upper Body B


A1. Serrano Press 4 x 4 reps

B1. Band Power Dips 7 x 6 reps

120s rest

B2. Explosive Supinated Grip Chin Ups 7 x 6 reps

120s rest

C1. Standing Behind the Neck Press 4 x 6-8 reps

Rest 90s

C2. Seated Rope Row to Throat  4 x 8-10 reps

Rest 90s


What is an Eccentric Exercise?


An eccentric contraction is when your muscle is shortening and lengthening at the same time.


An eccentric exercise is when your primary focus is on the part of the exercise when you are working with gravity.


For example:

Dips – this is the lowering phase

Lat Pull Down – when the bar is going up

Squats – As you go down

Pull Up – As you lower yourself down

Bench Press – Lowering the bar


In my current training programme I am using an 8 seconds eccentric, however, there is a large variety of time you can use when implementing eccentric training.

(refer to video below)

The length of your eccentric contraction can vary greatly, I have used up to 30second eccentric exercise phases when trying to increase pull up and chin up strength.


When performing the eccentric phase of the exercise your body is using less muscle fibres to move the same amount of weight. This increases micro trauma, aka damage to muscle fibres and it is this micro trauma that causes your muscles to ‘adapt’ and improve via super compensation.


5 Reason why you should include eccentric training


  1. Permits highest level of muscle tension (tension is key to hypertrophy)
  2. Eccentric strength converts over to concentric strength
  3. Produces high levels of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) which in turn induces hypertrophy
  4. Omitting eccentric training will limit your ability to produce force and strength production
  5. Eccentric training is responsible for muscle growth – it is this reason why Olympic Lifting does not result in great muscle gains.


Serrano Press w Bands


Eccentric Dips


Ischemic Pull Down