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Help me with pull ups/chin ups

(51 Posts)
MaidOfStars Wed 15-Mar-17 17:12:09

So, I've been trying to nail these for months. Months and months. Started on a bar, with a neutral grip and a thin low-resistance band looped over the bar and under my knee. Progressed from being able to do 0 without my PT lifting me to maybe 6 on the first set, decreasing as I got more tired.

I have since switched to rings. This works far better for a dodgy shoulder as my hands and arms can rotate through the movement. But no resistance band now as there's nothing to attach it to.

I can't do a single pull up unassisted. The rings are high (I have to jump up to grip) so I'm starting from a very extended position, although I try to keep my shoulders engaged at the bottom. We do slow negatives with legs raised, and I feel strong and controlled as I move down (although we only do sets of 5, or even 4). I don't know why I can't get up sad

Other lifts I do that might feed into pull ups are push presses and inverted rows. I don't do any isolated arm work. I am struggling at the traditional sticking point - I can get up a few inches, then need a boost over sticking point, then can finish them OK.

What do I need to do to improve the middle of my movement? Thanks!

Strongbeatsskinny Wed 15-Mar-17 20:02:20

Start with negatives to build arm and back strength. Basically get up use a box/ bench grip bars neutral is good and leap up hold and slowly lower in five to ten seconds.
Repeat for 10/12 reps rest 1 minute go again then repeat rest time by doing this maybe three four time a week within a fortnight to a month you'll progress to pull up aim low numbers at first with body weight.
Once you can do 10/12 try adding plates to a belt

MaidOfStars Thu 16-Mar-17 08:20:45

I couldn't do 10/12 negatives. I have my legs up in front of me and there's a lot going on all over my body!

I have two weights sessions a week and often only do pull ups for one of those. I might buy a bar for home to up the frequency. And concentrate on straightforward negatives in the first instance.

This is my new weights target, along with 160% deadlifts (you know they're the best wink)

MaidOfStars Thu 16-Mar-17 08:21:04

And I forgot to say thanks - thanks!

Strongbeatsskinny Thu 16-Mar-17 17:02:19

Legs down and slightly bent backwards is if you have to cross ankles no swinging jump up like your on a spring. Grip tight lower ever so slowly but keep tension on don't drop out of the tension zone every rep try every other.
You seem to only do compound exercises or do you do stuff like lat pull, single arm row, shoulder press, bench press ,seated row at all?
I'm asking because although your already lifting expressive amounts. Your lesser muscles aren't worked as much. My workouts are spit upper and lower days rotation of three different upper body and three different legs sessions.

MaidOfStars Thu 16-Mar-17 17:54:35

I have my legs up in front of me and there's a lot going on all over my body

Legs down and slightly bent backwards

Sorry, I meant that, at the moment, I am raising straight legs in front of me on the negative. When we weren't doing this, I had my legs as you describe.

Really have to focus on maintaining tension at bottom but managing it - I used to drop right down but realised that made it harder to try and get back up again smile

I do:
push presses most sessions
push ups every second session, but occasional bench press instead
inverted rows* most sessions, but occasional bent over rows (on a T-bar)

*I might not be calling these the right thing? Lying horizontal, core hard, feet up on wall, pulling up using grips on straps hanging above me.

MaidOfStars Thu 16-Mar-17 17:58:32

To be fair, my PT is happy with what I'm doing and my progress (as am I). It's a personal crusade to nail pull ups!

MaidOfStars Thu 16-Mar-17 18:08:14

I might buy a set of weights for home and start working on my little muscles? :D

FindoGask Sat 18-Mar-17 08:37:03

Maybe get a pull up bar instead? I've got one that you don't need to fix to a door, it supports itself with clever cantilivering (I think that's the word). I tried all sorts of things to get better at pull ups but in the end I just had to do more of them so I worked on them every day.

First I worked on chin ups and I didn't try pull ups until I could do 5 consecutive chins (chin ups are easier); then I focused on negative reps, then I just tried to increase the number of reps I could do per set. It took a while but if you want it you can do it!

MaidOfStars Sat 18-Mar-17 13:20:44

My husband thinks a pull up bar will be too much for our flimsy new build door frames. I don't weigh much though. Does yours feel stable?

RJnomore1 Sat 18-Mar-17 13:22:22

160% deadlifts! Go you!

MaidOfStars Sat 18-Mar-17 13:24:59

Not there yet!

RJnomore1 Sat 18-Mar-17 13:27:17

It's a great ambition. I'm wanting to hit 100% bench press.

Sorry for the derail...

I couldn't do a pull up to save my life blush

FindoGask Sun 19-Mar-17 08:20:27

It does feel stable, Maid- and our door frames aren't the sturdiest. I think the make is a Powerbar 2 if you want to check it out. Also I weigh about 11 1/2 stone, so probably more than you!

FindoGask Sun 19-Mar-17 08:21:50

Ps RJ- bench is my favourite.

MaidOfStars Sun 19-Mar-17 12:36:54

100% bench! I think I can just about manage 50%. Maybe. On a good day.

MaidOfStars Sun 19-Mar-17 12:37:23

My upper body strength is so far behind my lower body.

Helspopje Sun 19-Mar-17 12:40:50

Negatives ++
Band assisted

MaidOfStars Sun 19-Mar-17 12:51:31

How do I use a band on rings?

RJnomore1 Sun 19-Mar-17 13:17:37

I cannot fully activate my lower body. I dunno why! I'm also a bit rubbish at pull exercises but I can push big. Sometimes I think it's genetics and body type that make a difference.

FindoGask Sun 19-Mar-17 13:32:58

I'm not at 100% bench yet but imma get there, and hopefully beyond! This woman is my hero:

RJ my upper body strength is better than lower body too. For my three lifts my squat is easily the weakest. It is improving though, and my previously pancake-shaped arse no longer fits most of my trousers. I accidentally ripped my pyjamas right down the middle seam, Hulk style, the other day, when I squatted down to get something out of a cupboard!

(sorry for continued derailment, Maid!)

MaidOfStars Sun 19-Mar-17 14:01:57

I accidentally ripped my pyjamas right down the middle seam, Hulk style, the other day, when I squatted down to get something out of a cupboard!
Derail to your hearts content, if the derailment is this amazing!

My arse has completely changed shape over the last year. It's in a different place!

RJnomore1 Sun 19-Mar-17 17:29:53

I don't think my legs are weaker they are really strong but I panic when I have a lot of weight on and I get to say the bottom of my squat. I'm at 100% squat which is rubbish as I'm at 75% bench press.

I am disappointed I haven't ripped my pjs now!

FindoGask Sun 19-Mar-17 20:05:19

I read somewhere that an achievable goal for most female lifters would be a 100% bench press, 150% squat and 200% deadlift. For me that would be to bench 75 kg, squat 120 kg and deadlift 150 kg. The bench feels feasibly within reach but the other two are still a way off yet. After a year's diligent effort I can now squat my bodyweight for reps but I can't imagine even what 120 kg would feel like on my back, never mind squatting it. But then I think a year ago I wouldn't have imagined being able to do what I can now, so you never know.

The pyjama incident was pretty funny - there was a comedy rrrrrip noise and everything. So glad it was just pyjamas in my house and not trousers at work!

RJnomore1 Sun 19-Mar-17 20:09:30

That seems quite high findo

There's strength standards somewhere but this from live strong reckons 75% for press 125% for squat and 150 for deadlift

I don't wear trousers much due to my calves 😳 I can pack muscle on my calves in ways most men can only dream of!

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