Pull Ups 101

Pull ups are a great exercise to help strengthen and sculpt that upper body. Performing pull ups also provide a lot of benefits. Pull ups play a significant role in many muscle groups. It can take as much as 15 muscles to complete a single pull up!

2 Factors

There are two important factors that will contribute to a strong pull up...

  • Grip - if you are an athlete, gym goer etc. you would be aware and understand the importance of proper grip. To perform a perfect pull up, it is crucial that you have a good, firm grip to assist your pull up
  • Posture - good posture is critical for all lifting exercises. If your posture is off or you are experiencing imbalances, pull ups are an excellent exercise than can help regain your position

Do Your Pull Ups

Unfortunately, pull ups are an exercise that is often avoided. We are not going to lie... pull ups are HARD! However, do not to fret! There are many alternatives that can be performed to mock a pull up and make them more acheivable.

Pull ups should be an essential to your exercise regime. They are great to learn as they can practically be performed anywhere, anytime! They can also be performed without any complicated or expensive equipment.


With pull ups, and as already mentioned, there are many ways they can be performed. There are in fact, more than half a dozen variations of the exercise.

Each type of pull up has different effects on the muscles, however, the concept remains the same.

Let us explain some popular variations in detail...

Neck Pull Ups - This pull up variation is recommended for those that are slightly more confident with pulls ups. It might also be recommended that this variation be performed only if your shoulders are in good nick. Going behind the neck pull ups can be challenging but a worthwhile variation.

Chin Ups - This is the most common pull up variation. It is a basic pull up except your palms are facing towards you.

Standard Pull Up - This variation is a classic pull up. Simply grip the overhead bar with your palms facing away from you.

Dead Hang Pull Ups - This variation of pull up develops great foundation of body strength. Simply you grip a bar or rings with feet suspended from the floor with arms extended. Sustain the dead hand hold for as long as possible without beginning to lose form. Rest and repeat.

Plyo Pull Ups - This variation of pull up involves an explosive movement and letting go. A popular version of this is to do a pull up and a clap between sets.

Kipping Pull Ups - This is a pull up variation of which you use momentum to get your chin above the bar.

Benefits of Pull Ups

Fat Loss

  • Pull ups can burn 5 calories per minute
  • Increases your heart rate
  • Increase exercise after burn

Strengthen Grip

  • Your hands and fingers holds all of your body weight
  • Develops strong forearms
  • Good grip increases hand endurance

Works Many Muscles

  • Targets back, biceps, shoulder, chest, forearms... etc!
  • Takes nearly 15 muscles to perfrom 1 pull up
  • Good posture improves circulation and digestion

Cardiovascular Workout

  • Great alternative to cardio
  • Much more gentle on your joints


  • No expensive equipment needed and can be performed practically anywhere.
  • There are many variations to try

Better Moods

  • Exercise in general makes you a happy person and releases endorphins (feel good hormones)


As stated, pull ups unfortunately seem to be a exercise that most avoid as it proves difficult. However, now that you are aware that there is more than 1 variation of pull up out there... know they are achievable for any level of fitness. If you are after the easiest variation, we suggest beginning on an assisted pull up machines and/or banded pull ups with resistance bands.

Happy pull upping!



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