Pull Up – Step One

Pull Up – Step One –  By Shawna Kaminski

Pull ups…where do you even start?

I get asked all the time, ‘What can I do to master the pull up?’

I’m Shawna Kaminski, sometimes referred to as the ’Pull Up Queen’ because I often do multiple sets of multiple reps of pull ups. I have no business being able to do this given that I’m just a mom who’s nearly 50 years old. I’ve never been a gymnast or anything special. What I’m trying to say is that if I can do this feat with a little hard work, so can you.

I have a tip and a short little circuit for you in this video to help you get a start on achieving your first or fifth pull up.

Here’s the tip from the video:

Learn how to do a scapular retraction. This helps to isolate and engage the strong muscles of the back to help you with the pull up. Hang from the bar with straight arms. Look upwards as if you’re about to lift your chest under the bar.

BEFORE you bend the arms and start pulling, squeeze the shoulder blades together. You’ll notice that you can elevate the chest a few inches. Slowly return to the full hang. Repeat this a few times as your warm up, then every time you attempt a pull up, start by retracting the scapula or shoulder blades this way.

Here’s the workout from the video:

•    Do a warm up and then do a few scapular retractions to get those back muscles warm.

•    Do 10 assisted pull ups – You can do band pull ups, jump pull ups, step up pull ups. Just remember to do a slow hang every time you get your chest to the bar to work the negative or eccentric portion of the movement.

•    Do 10 DB rows per arm – Use as heavy dumb bell as you can. Start with your weak arm

•    Repeat this three times.

•    Finish with hanging leg raises. Do 10 leg raises, ensuring you rock at the hip instead of just bringing the knees to parallel, rest up to 30 seconds and repeat.

Good luck with achieving your first pull up. If you need some more assistance, check out more tips and tricks HERE.

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  • I like your method but my method was simpler. I mastered the pull up by simply getting very strong on the wide grip lat pulldown and the bicep curl. The rest became easy after that.

    I can now do pull ups with 50+ kg additional weight with little problems. It’s just a matter of consistency. Once you get your first one, keep doing the accessory work and keep improving.

    Cheers,

    Dennis