Back routines regularly incorporate pull-ups and it’s an exercise athletes like to build up as a matter of pride.
But getting started can be tricky for those relatively new to the technique and it takes time to build up the endurance and power required to meet your goals.
To help, Built for Athletes has compiled five tips on how to get better at doing pull-ups.
Fully Engage The Lats
By pulling your feet and core forward to create a smaller angle between your body and the bar, and then pulling your chest upwards, you can more fully engage the large lat muscles. Performing lat activation exercises, such as a banded pulldowns, before the workout can ensure the muscle fibres are ready to work.
Use A Band To Add Volume
The difficult thing about trying to build up the number of pull-ups you can perform is that you can’t reduce the weight like with most exercises to improve your endurance. But one way around this is to tie a resistance band to the bar and put it around your foot/feet so that you’re supported when performing the exercise. You can then add volume and improve muscular endurance by doing more reps.
Build Grip Strength
If your grip on the bar starts to give up as you’re approaching max reps, this is an area you should consider working on. A weak grip can stop you from generating enough force to effectively perform the exercise. Consider investing in a grip strengthener or practice bar hangs.
Extra Bicep Training
The biceps are one of the main secondary muscles used when doing a pull-up so training them properly can have a big impact. Think about the volume of arm training you’re doing on a weekly basis and consider increasing it.
Do Weighted Pull-Ups
Just as building up volume can help to improve muscular endurance, building weight can help improve strength and ensure a progressive overload.
If you can do over five pull-ups, and particularly if you’ve reached a plateau in your training, try doing one or two reps with extra weight strapped to you.