While pull-ups work wonders for your back development and overall strength, it takes a good amount of strength to raise and lower the weight of your whole body while hanging. Here’s 5 exercises that will help you get better at doing pull ups, increasing your strength and stability.
Using an overhead grip, hang from a bar and tighten your core with your legs slightly in front of your body. Hold that position for 20-30 seconds. This is a great exercise to strengthen your core, shoulders and back in a position of weakness on the pull up.
The bent over row is a great exercise for working all the essential back and arm muscles needed in the pull up. It will even target the smaller muscle groups like rear shoulders and rhomboids to give a bigger, stronger back for a better pull.
3. INVERTED ROW
While inverted rows can be challenging, they are still easier than pull ups so provide a natural progression. This is one of the best ways to engage your back while pulling, which builds the mind-muscle connection, along with strength in the lats.
Step up (or jump) to the top portion of the pull up, from there squeeze your arms and back and aim to lower yourself as slowly as possible to the bottom portion of the pull up where your arms are straight. Do this for a few sets aiming to lower more slowly each time. This is a great trick to really strengthen your arms and back in the pull up movement while also teaching you to control your own bodyweight.
5. HAMMER CURL
Pull ups require stronger biceps, especially if you’re using the slightly easier grip of neutral (palms facing each other or underhand grip when palms face you). By doing free-weight hammer curls you’re essentially strengthening the muscle that will aid in the pulling of the pull up.