11 Ideas on How to Get Better at Pull Ups

You want to get better at pull ups?

Ideas on How to Get Better at Pull UpsI don’t know about you, but pull ups are part of my exercise regime. Doing legitimate pull ups affects your body building results. I believe pull ups are one of the most essential exercises and I advocate them to anybody keen on looking better. Forget press ups; any guy who faithfully does proper pull ups and chin ups has well developed arms.

Since pull ups are one of the greatest muscle building exercises, you want to do them the right way. You may be wondering, “How do I get better at pull ups?” Or “How do I do more pull ups”

Well, here are some 11 amazing ways to get better at pull ups.

  1. Use a Proper Bar

Look for a bar that supports your weight. Don’t compromise! Just find one no matter what. If you attend a gym, you will likely find a couple of pull up bars to choose from. If you exercise in your house, look for a perfect bar. When grabbing a bar, grip it a bit wider than your shoulder width; make sure your hands are facing away from you.

  1. Shed off Excess Body Fat

A lot of people might not be aware but your ability to do impressive pull ups can be impeded by excessive body weight. This causes you to do less pull ups and be under intense pressure while exercising. Even though extra body fat is preferred in exercises that call for greater leverage such as deadlift and squat, excessive body fat is a great enemy of pull ups. So, if you want to improve your pull ups capability, you’ve to get rid of the fat; it’s not healthy.

  1. Launch your Pull ups in an Appropriate Position

The success of doing pull ups is often determined by how well you position yourself at the beginning. Many people find themselves in a dead hang position where their shoulders touch the ears and the scapula is elevated; this is not only wrong but dangerous as well. When you begin in this position, your tendons and ligaments are subjected to tension which should be directed towards your muscles.

So, what’s the right position? Immediately you’re on the bar, lower your shoulder blades and lock down your shoulders into their sockets. This position is safer because stress is directed towards the muscles instead of ligaments and tendons. Remember, starting off in a safe and recommended position eliminates the risk of injury.

  1. Don’t swing

Hang all the way down and pull yourself up until your chin is above the bar. Go up and pay attention on secluding your back and biceps. After doing your first pull up, continue doing them in sets. Do not be in a hurry, do each pull up a minute or two apart. Avoid doing the exercise halfway down and not going all the way up. Instead, straighten your arms out at the bottom and get your chin over the bar.

  1. Avoid Kipping

What is kipping? This is using the weight of your body to create momentum and swinging to the top of the bar instead of using your core muscles, back and arms properly.

Do not kip not unless you are a trained gymnast or well advanced in calisthenics. If you plan to use pull ups to improve your back strength, athleticism, back muscle size and tone, avoid kipping. Kipping should only be done by people who already know how to do legitimate pull ups in a row. Kipping refrains you from achieving positive results of pull ups. Moreover, kipping can damage your shoulder joints which help in sustaining the force encountered during kipping.

  1. Remain Consistent

Pull ups is one exercise whose fundamentals of success revolve around consistency. Don’t allow yourself to fail or to have doubts about your capability. As soon as you lose power and your subsequent reps become weaker, you begin to slow your speed and fail to attain the acceptable height. When this happens, you’re unable to do more pull ups because the weight begins to crash you down and soon, you’re totally unable to continue. If you lose power, don’t insist going on because you keep getting weaker and weaker.

  1. Make Use of Various Grips

There are numerous ways to pull up your body. One way is doing chin ups while your palms are facing you at different grip widths. Alternatively, you can do chin ups as your palms face each other or pull ups as your palms face away from each other at multiple grip widths. You can also do pull up on ropes, bars, towels, beams, suspension straps, rings and Eagle Loops among others. Fortunately, the options are unlimited; try utilizing as many chin ups as possible to eliminate overuse injuries and avoid burnout.

  1. Keep a Slight Elbow Bend Through the Set

Before you commence your set, you should ensure your elbows are slightly bent and remain in that position. In fact, the bend should be unnoticeable but it will go a long way to boost your elbow health. Never begin with your elbows completely locked as doing this will direct all the tension to the tendons and ligaments instead of the muscles. On every successive rep, lower yourself gradually until your arms are almost straight and stopping just before lockout. Ensure that you intentionally don’t attain complete extension.

  1. Strengthen Your Grip

Pull ups are simpler and enjoyable when your grip is strong. To attain a stronger grip, you can include more grip items at the gym such as hexagon dumbbell holds, fat bar holds as well as different crushing and pinching exercises. Ensure to use grip items in your regular exercises in order to get accustomed to using them as your grip gradually strengthens.

  1. Engage in Other Exercises

There are a couple of complimentary exercises that you can practice to get better in pull ups. Exercise that helps to make biceps strong, lats muscles strong, hips and grip strong are encouraged. For your horizontal body weight pulling skills which go hand in hand with vertical pulling skills, use dumbbell and barbell bent over rows to build raw strength and stability. In addition, to have a stable core and hips, remember to do your planks (don’t shy away from trying other plank variations if you can hold a plank for more than 60 seconds).

  1. Concentrate on the Negative

In life, you are always told, “Don’t focus on the negative.”

Well, in pull ups case, the reverse is true; concentrating on the negative is highly encouraged. The negative pull up involves doing the lowering phase of the exercise and is famed for building strength for complete pull ups. While performing negative pull up, the movement should be gradual and systematic. In addition, make sure to engage the muscles in the upper body to attain maximum tension throughout the exercise.

How to perform negative pull ups:

  • Use a pull up machine for assistance to reach the top position in all the levels.
  • Make use of the monster band on the pull up handles.
  • Request a friend to push your feet upward.
  • Use a chair or stool to climb to the top position (if the bar is low enough, you can simply jump).


So, what are you waiting for? Start becoming better in pull ups today! You have no excuse, play like a champion and get an amazing build up upper body.


Add more variation to your pull up. Know more about kipping pull ups. Click here.




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