A Pull Up is one of the best upper body movements. There are a variety of grips to work different combinations of muscles and there are also a variety of progressions for different ability levels.

A woman hanging before a pull up

There are three main grips which we can use for any of our variations. These grips are:

  1. Palms facing away from us and arms wider than shoulder width apart. This will work into the upper back.

  2. Palms facing towards us and this will work more into our biceps. For this option our arms should be approximately shoulder width apart.

  3. Palms facing away from us with our arms shoulder width apart. This will work through the middle of our back.

The first variation of a pull up is with a band. Attach a thick band to the pull up bar so that it hangs down. Secure your knee within the band. Whilst holding the bar with your preferred grip you can jump up on the way up whilst pulling up and then slowly lower yourself down all the way to a straight arm.

To progress this movement, we can remove the band or use a weaker band such that it provides less assistance. You can continue to use a little jump to help yourself on the way up.

The final progression would be to do a full body weight pull up. These are done continuously without touching the floor between repetitions.

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