Exercises to get better at pull ups

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MissFitMama
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Exercises to get better at pull ups

#1 Postby MissFitMama » Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:54 pm

I am still pretty new to exercising. I was a gymnast for most my youth, but I have since had 2 kids and wasn't exercising much because my abs muscles split apart pretty badly during my pregnancies. I wasn't even able to do one sit up. It was so embarrassing. I felt so weak. I've been vegan for 7 years, and decided I wanted to build muscle and get strong for my 2013 New Year's resolution. My husband had bought a ReboundAir mini trampoline, and I used that for an hour a day, just bouncing on it, in hopes that my abdominal muscles would get strong enough so I could exercise again. Well, it worked. I can do sit ups now! And the gap in my muscles is gone! Yay!
I started working out intensely the past 35 days (today is day 36 of working out every day). I recently bought a pull up bar, and was wondering what workouts I can do, at home, that will help me get better at doing pull ups? I can currently do 2 chin-ups, then rest, then do 2 more. I can get up to about 10 before I can't do any more. I can do 1 pull up, total.
I've been doing pike presses, every day. And push-ups. I'm really liking the Sumo Push-ups.
Do pike presses work the same muscles I would need to get good at pull ups? Any other upper back workouts I can do at home? I have a goal of wanting my upper body, arms and upper back to be strong, because the extra weight from pregnancy on my tiny frame (I am 5ft tall and currently weigh 90lbs, gained 2 lbs in the past month, which is really good for me, since my goal is to weigh 95lbs) made me have a bit of hunch back, and I slouch a lot. I think I slouch because of lack of upper back muscle. I don't have the money to go the gym right now, but I bought the pull up bar in hopes that I can increase my upper back strength, and hopefully not be so slouchy anymore. I just don't think the pull up bar is doing much since I can't really do more than 1 pull up!
My husband is very support (he is working out every day as well) and I think I am doing well with my other workouts, to get my entire body into shape. I'm doing a lot of HIIT training, like the BodyRock.tv type stuff, rebounding (for my cardio) and attempting to do pull-ups every day. Any tricks or tips for beginners doing pull ups? Any videos I can watch? And I don't own any weights, but want to get some soon, so everything needs to be "body weight" type exercises, or using items around the home like chairs. Since I don't have a trainer I like having videos so I can see the proper form on how to do exercises. Hopefully, I'll be able to pay for a trainer soon.

Thanks in advance
Kimra Luna

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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#2 Postby C.O. » Fri Apr 26, 2013 10:30 pm

Dear Kimra, you're awesome! Thanks for sharing your story and I hope to hear more from you here on the forum.

-Dylan

Jaakko
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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#3 Postby Jaakko » Sat Apr 27, 2013 1:25 am

Hi!

I also want to learn proper pull ups, my goal is to master the Muscle Up!

I do 3 sets of 8-12reps, 3 times a week. I think it is important to let the muscles rest at least one day before challenging them again. Since I'm not able to do one single real pull up I am currently working my way up with inversed push-ups (using a low bar to pull myself up in a inversed push-up position) or helping with my legs.

My actual exercise program is very varied. Monday I do sprints (3 sprints over 500-1000m) and "vertical strength training": Wide grip chin ups helping with my legs and Holding myself on a wall only with my hands (= vertical push down) as long as I can in Superset. Another Superset with Close grip chin ups on a fence (thus working much more my biceps than my back) helping with my legs and Handstand (=vertical push up) as long as I can.

Wednesday is my fun-workout where I do less strength training but more coordination work: Lizard walking (on all fours), Donkey-burpees, trying to do Kong Vaults and Cat Jumps.

Friday I do easy, aerobic running for 30 Minutes and my "horizontal workout" : A superset with Plyometric pushups (against a bench or wall, as I am not strong enough to do them on the floor) and wide grip inversed "push-ups". And another one with Diamond Push-ups (also, against an obstacle) and close grip inversed "push-ups".

I find it is working really well for me! I like the variety and the possibility to work out anywhere, especially outdoors!

muchidna
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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#4 Postby muchidna » Sat Apr 27, 2013 4:08 am

hi, a good way to strengthen your muscles is to, instead of doing pullups, grab the bar as you would if you were going to do one,push yourself up with a jump, then slowly lower yourself down with your muscles
do several sets of it, it will work the same muscles you would if you were doing pullups (do it with several different grips to work all the diff muscles)
be careful with the HIIT cardio though, as it can burn your muscle instead of fat if your heart rate gets too high, i usually like to go at a pace where i could still easily talk to someone without huffing and puffing

humancertainty
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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#5 Postby humancertainty » Sat Apr 27, 2013 2:17 pm

What I found worked best for me was doing pullups frequently. I couldn't do one less than a year ago. Once I could do one, I would do one whenever I walked past my pullup bar. Then I started doing two. If you're bar allows for neutral grip, they're a bit easier and will help develop those muscles.
You can also buy resistance bands and hook them over your bar for assistance. Ross Enamait of rosstraining.com has a great video. I used Bodylastics tubes which are not continuous, but the principal is the same.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skcvzdCCpSo&list=UUy1-bB7ik-p2_P7uqv9E3hA&index=34[/youtube]
Inverted rows can help, too, plus they work your pulling muscles differently. I do mine with a WOSS suspension trainer, which you can get for less than $30 shipped(http://www.amazon.com/Trainer-Bag-Military-Strap-Metal/dp/B006ZRI0P4/ref=pd_sbs_sg_4/179-9323383-3246717).
Hope this helps!

EDIT:Can't figure out how to make the video post!

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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#6 Postby Compassion » Sat Apr 27, 2013 5:10 pm

Lat pulldowns, Declines on the pullup bar, arm exercises, and just overall doing pullups! Welcome to the forums!
-Evan

MissFitMama
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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#7 Postby MissFitMama » Wed May 01, 2013 2:36 pm

Thanks for all the tips!!

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Re: Exercises to get better at pull ups

#8 Postby crashnburn » Mon May 27, 2013 4:44 pm

MissFitMama wrote:I am still pretty new to exercising. I was a gymnast for most my youth, but I have since had 2 kids and wasn't exercising much because my abs muscles split apart pretty badly during my pregnancies. I wasn't even able to do one sit up. It was so embarrassing. I felt so weak. I've been vegan for 7 years, and decided I wanted to build muscle and get strong for my 2013 New Year's resolution. My husband had bought a ReboundAir mini trampoline, and I used that for an hour a day, just bouncing on it, in hopes that my abdominal muscles would get strong enough so I could exercise again. Well, it worked. I can do sit ups now! And the gap in my muscles is gone! Yay!
I started working out intensely the past 35 days (today is day 36 of working out every day). I recently bought a pull up bar, and was wondering what workouts I can do, at home, that will help me get better at doing pull ups? I can currently do 2 chin-ups, then rest, then do 2 more. I can get up to about 10 before I can't do any more. I can do 1 pull up, total.
I've been doing pike presses, every day. And push-ups. I'm really liking the Sumo Push-ups.
Do pike presses work the same muscles I would need to get good at pull ups? Any other upper back workouts I can do at home? I have a goal of wanting my upper body, arms and upper back to be strong, because the extra weight from pregnancy on my tiny frame (I am 5ft tall and currently weigh 90lbs, gained 2 lbs in the past month, which is really good for me, since my goal is to weigh 95lbs) made me have a bit of hunch back, and I slouch a lot. I think I slouch because of lack of upper back muscle. I don't have the money to go the gym right now, but I bought the pull up bar in hopes that I can increase my upper back strength, and hopefully not be so slouchy anymore. I just don't think the pull up bar is doing much since I can't really do more than 1 pull up!
My husband is very support (he is working out every day as well) and I think I am doing well with my other workouts, to get my entire body into shape. I'm doing a lot of HIIT training, like the BodyRock.tv type stuff, rebounding (for my cardio) and attempting to do pull-ups every day. Any tricks or tips for beginners doing pull ups? Any videos I can watch? And I don't own any weights, but want to get some soon, so everything needs to be "body weight" type exercises, or using items around the home like chairs. Since I don't have a trainer I like having videos so I can see the proper form on how to do exercises. Hopefully, I'll be able to pay for a trainer soon.

Thanks in advance
Kimra Luna


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