Pull-ups & YOU!


By Katherine MacPherson BS, ACSM HFS & UVAC Personal Trainer



 I am going to share with you the ultimate step-by-step way to build up to a pull up.  The variations below will help improve your pull-up technique and make you stronger.
Each variation is ordered step-by-step to best help you gain the technique and strength to earn up to a pull up.  These exercises can be harder for some, but once the exercise gets to be too easy, it may be time to move on to the next variation. 
Variation One: Inverted Row


·         Your hands should be shoulder width apart. 
·         Angle your body slightly under the bar.
·         You should keep your core tight and shoulders back (don’t shrug!)  Grab the bar and pull your chest toward it.  Your body will remain in a straight position as you meet the bar with your chest.


*Practice this:  3 sets of 12/ 2 times a week
Variation Two: TRX Suspension Trainer Pull-Up

·         Put your TRX Training straps into “over short”
·         Place your legs slightly under the straps. 
·         Pull your body up toward the handles.  When you’re up your hands should be close to your Deltoid muscles or collar bones.


*Practice this:  3 sets of 12/ 2 times a week
Variation Three: Resistant Band Neutral Grip Pull Up


·         Place a box 1 to 2 feet away from the pull up bar.  At UVAC, there are 4 different bands to choose from.  The thicker the band, the more body weight that will be subtracted from your pull.   Safely loop your band in the center of the pull-up bar. (Keep in mind you may need a personal trainer to assist you.) 
·         Put one foot on the bottom of the band, keep one hand safely on the pull-up bar for support.
·         Push your foot flat down onto the box and put your free foot over the one in the band. 
·         Place your hands inside the V of the bar. Now, you are ready to try your first natural grip pull up!
·         Grip hard on the bar, and pull yourself upward.  Your hands should be near your deltoids.  Lower yourself leaving your arm nearly fully extended. Repeat!


*Practice this 2 X a week.  Do 3 sets of 3 to set, once this gets easier, move to 4 sets of 5.
Variation Four:  Lighter band or no band.
·         This variation takes time to earn up to this point.  But once the resistant band you first started with gets too easy, it’s time to change into a lighter band.  This will allow you to pull more of your body weight. 
·         Once here, it’ll be time to try a few repetitions without a band, and into either an actual pull up or chin up.


Good Luck!  If you would like to consult with a Personal Trainer about meeting to begin training, or if you have any questions please feel free to contact us at 802-296-2850 X 104
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