- Assisted pull-ups
Assisted pull-up machine
If your gym has an assisted pull-up machine then use that to help with your progression. Try and decrease the amount of assistance or increase the number of reps if you keep the assistance the same each week – for example, if you did 3×6 last week, then try and do 3×7 or 3×8 using the same weight this week.
Assisted pull-ups with a resistance band
If your gym does not have an assisted pull-up machine then do not worry! You can buy resistance bands from eBay or Amazon which are relatively cheap to help you. I would recommend getting a set of bands because as you get stronger, you will need to use a weaker band. You can start off with green or purple, depending on your ability and then move on to the red band before you remove it altogether! So how do I use a resistance band you’re probably thinking…
1. Loop the band through the bar
2. Put your knee in the resistance band
3. Pull-up, up and away
4. Try not to whack yourself in the face with the band getting down
This is when you start at the top of the pull-up movement and lower yourself down. How?!
1. Jump up on to the bar or alternatively use a box to the side of your bar
2. Hold the top position of the pull-up
3. Slowly control yourself down, doing it the count of 5 seconds
Quite simply – you need to build your back muscles to increase your strength over your bodyweight. My favourite back exercises are- Standing T-bar rows
– Single arm dumbbell rows
– Seated cable rows
– Lat pull downs
– Single arm lat pull downs
Barbell rows are also good as you can change your grip – wide grip, narrow grip and reverse grip to target different areas of your back. I personally hate doing wide grip barbell rows so I don’t do them! I tend to rotate these exercises when I get a new plan so I don’t get bored and I’ll do one of these exercises twice a week.
- AMRAP sets
AM-what?! AMRAP stands for ‘as many reps as possible’. I personally find that AMRAP sets for pull-ups have really helped me progress. In my training I will do 3 sets of AMRAP with a long rest in between each set (2-3 mins). Try and get an extra rep each week!