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How to do a pull up – the trainer’s guide

Learning how to do a pull up correctly could be what’s been missing in your arm and back workouts. In this trainer’s guide, PT Ashley Capewell from Performance Ground Gym shows you exactly how 

Subscribe to our YouTube channel for heaps of full length free workout videos

The pull up is a vertical pulling movement which is an upper body compound movement that primarily uses the biceps and back muscles.

How to do a pull up

  1. Place hands just wider than your shoulders with palms facing away from you.
  2. From a hanging position you’ll be in a straight line from toes to wrists.
  3. Set your shoulder blades back and down.
  4. Aim to pull your elbows towards your pockets.
  5. Lift the best towards the bar.
  6. On the way back down hold this position and don’t flex forwards.
  7. Control the descent back down to the hanging position.

What if you can’t do a full pull up – so few of us can…

The pull up can be a difficult move as you are pulling all of your body weight upwards and for women that haven’t trained for it, can feel impossible.

If you find this move too difficult, try introducing strength into the muscles being used by starting with standing on a bench and practicing descending pull ups.

Begin the move at the top of the pull up with your chest close to the bar, then holding yourself up, slowly descend with a three second count to the hanging position and then stepping back on to the bench and repeating 3-6 times.

Would you like to train Performance Ground gym? Click here to book your consultation

More Gym Basics:

Week One: How to squat properly – trainer’s guide

Week Two: How to do a deadlift – trainer’s guide 

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