Why the Chair Challenge Is Much Harder for Men


The fitness industry is always looking for the next great challenge. The harder it is, the better. Well, this one will appear easy, and it should be for most of the women that read this. Men, on the other hand, could fail long before they succeed.

It’s called “The Chair Challenge,” and it’s been picking up steam once again on the internet. The instructions appear simple: Stand immediately in front of a wall so your head and feet touch. Take two connecting steps back from the wall. Bend over at the waist so the top of your head touches the wall. You should have a chair in front of you, or you can have someone else place the chair in front of you. Reach down, grab the sides of the chair, pull it up to your torso, and stand straight up.

Seems simple enough, right? Well, as many men are finding out, not so much. In this video, you can see that the woman dominates the task while the man is unable to stand at all.

How could this be? Well, the problem may be a matter of leverage. In most cases, since men normally have larger feet, a man’s two steps will be farther back than a woman’s. That makes a man’s angle a more challenging starting point. When a woman or shorter man is in this position, they’re able to engage their core more to return to the standing position.

Conversely, a taller person would have to rely more on their posterior chain muscles like the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. If they can’t recruit these muscles properly, then the struggle can be very real. Taller people also are faced with a greater center of mass, which can also add a level of difficulty to this movement.

Possible Solution

If you’re someone who wants to conquer this challenge, then focusing on your posterior chain muscles would be a wise move. Exercises like good-mornings, glute bridges, and leg curls that engage those areas could all play a positive role in helping you becoming a chair-challenge champion. Give this workout a try and victory can be within your grasp.

Sample Posterior Chain Workout

Bentover Barbell Row – 5 sets of 5 reps

Low Back Extensions – 3 sets of 8 reps

Good Mornings – 3 sets of 8 reps

Lying Leg Curl – 3 sets of 12 reps

The 4-Week Anterior and Posterior Split Workout Plan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *