If there’s one exercise that really tests your strength, it’s the pull-up, and with good reason. Pull-ups are the quintessential upper body exercise. They do for your back, arms, and upper body what squats do for your lower body. They help you maximize your grip strength, shred body fat, and build upper body muscle like you wouldn’t believe as well.
Some fitness experts even consider a person’s ability to do pull-ups to be the ideal way to tell how strong they really are, so they’re well worth incorporating into your own fitness routine. If your ultimate upper body goal is to be able to nail a pull-up challenge with absolute ease, the right resistance bands can definitely help you get there. Let’s take a closer look at how.
Build Superior Upper Body Strength with Rubber Resistance
Simply put, resistance bands deserve a place in any well-rounded collection of fitness equipment. Resistance bands make it possible to complete an entire full-body strength training workout without the need for the weights or expensive machines. This makes them especially ideal for people that:
- Travel often and need a portable, reliable way to keep up with their workouts while away from home base.
- Like to change up the settings of their workouts. Resistance bands can be taken anywhere and used either indoors or outdoors.
- Are building a home gym on a budget or with limited space to work with.
Don’t let the convenience and economy attached to rubber resistance bands fool you either. They’re actually extremely effective – just as effective as any other type of strength training equipment. They’re definitely capable of helping you develop the type of upper body strength necessary to do pull-ups successfully.
To begin with, resistance bands bring the benefits of progressive resistance to the table. The further you stretch your band, the greater the level of resistance generated. This leaves your body with no choice but to maximize the ability of the targeted muscles to engage and contract.
The very nature of rubber resistance also encourages automatic deceleration toward the peak of each movement. This lowers your risk of sustaining an injury or overtraining your muscles the way you might working with traditional weights.
Try incorporating banded big lifts into your existing strength training routine for two or three weeks. Then take a couple of weeks off before incorporating them again. You’ll add variety and value to your workouts that will lead to serious gains when it comes to your upper body strength. To help build power as well as strength, make sure your band-assisted movements are as explosive as possible. Stick to it, and it won’t be long before you’re banging out pull-ups like a pro.
Assisted Pull-Ups Using Resistance Bands
If you can’t do any pull-ups at your current fitness level, don’t despair. You can use a resistance band to get you started with a little assistance. Options like Unique Fitness Concepts’ very own pull-up assist set work wonderfully for this. In this context, the bands help make pull-ups less difficult for beginners by offsetting a portion of their bodyweight. Let’s go over the basics of how to get started.
- Choose the correct band for your current fitness level. The higher the resistance, the more assistance you’ll be receiving from the band, so beginners should use bands of higher resistance while stronger people go for lower resistance levels.
- Loop both ends of your band around your pull-up bar, taking care to tie it in a secure knot. Make sure the band is secure by pulling down firmly before you start.
- Place your dominant foot into the loop created by the bottom of the band. Cross the opposite leg behind your dominant leg.
- Now grasp the bar with both hands and do your pull-ups, allowing the resistance band to help you as you do so. Repeat until you’ve achieved muscle exhaustion and literally can’t do another pull-up. Then rest for a minute or two before completing more reps. Try to aim for 5-8 pull-ups in your session.
As you continue to build strength over time, make sure you also move through the different levels of resistance, from high to low. Before you know it, you’ll be strong enough to do your pull-ups without any sort of assistance at all. Get started today!