Dumbbell biceps curls on the bench

A pull-up is widely recognized as one of the most important and effective exercises. It is a compound exercise that stimulates multiple key muscles at the same time and can be done at the home, office, and gym without much equipment. However, this kind of functional self-weight exercise can be very difficult for beginners to master. Don’t worry about it! Ativafit will show you several movements to help you build up your strength until you can eventually perform pull-ups.

Easier Ways to Pull-Ups

You can work on the foundations to get you ready to do a complete one. Here are a few ideas to guide your pull-up progression training.

  • Assisted pull-ups with a resistance band

Practicing pull-ups with the help of a resistance band is a known way. Firstly, wrap the resistance band around the bar, secure one end around the bar, and then place your foot in the loop at the bottom. Then you can do pull-ups as usual, but the band should lessen the resistance and allow you to pull your body up. During the training, you can change the resistance band to a thinner one after you activate the muscles, and you will eventually complete the movement.

pull-ups assisted with resistance band
Photo: Bodybuilding.com
  • Negative pull-ups

To perform negative pull-ups, you should grab the bar with your hands and place it slightly wider than shoulder-width. Step on a box or sturdy chair to jump to the top of the pull-ups movement and have your chest toughed the barbell. Then, slowly lower your body until you are down to the starting position of the pull-up exercise. You are suggested to performing these in three groups of 12 reps. Make sure to take a break between each group. 

Negative pull-ups

Photo: Men's Health

Alternatives to Pull-Ups

Alternatively, you can start with other upper body exercises that target lats, teres major, biceps, and trapezius to build up strength. Followed moves train all the muscles you use to do pull-ups, and you will need dumbbells to adjust the intensity of your workout. 

  • Dumbbell bent-over rows

Stand with the feet about shoulder-width apart, bend the knee slightly and bend forward at the waist 45 degrees. Remember to keep the back straight, and the core is engaged. Hold a dumbbell in each hand and pull your arms close to your ribcage.

Dumbbell bent-over rows

  • Dumbbell pullovers

Lie on your back on a weight bench or a yoga ball with your feet flat on the floor. Roll back and hold a dumbbell over your chest with both your hands. Flare your elbows a bit to target your lats. Lower the dumbbell behind your head and keep it as close to your body as possible. After reaching the bottom, bring the dumbbell back over your head and return to the starting position.

Dumbbell pullovers

  • Dumbbell biceps curls

You stand with the feet about shoulder-width apart, hold a dumbbell in a hand, and start with your hands by your side. Remember to breathe out while curling your arms up to your shoulders and breathe in while lower the dumbbells to the starting position.

Dumbbell biceps curls


Product Recommendation:


Exercise tips

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published