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The beautiful Chyna Cho 🙂

I am sure that in the future there will be more exercises I will change my mind about. But I am not worried to admit it. I know that there is so much more I can learn and that things I believe in today, through the eyes of tomorrow, the gathered experience and knowledge, might look like a mistake!

Today I’d like to share with you my opinion about pull ups. Or to be more accurate my opinion about band assisted pull ups and their place in your workouts.

First of all I will start with some pre history. I bet that all of you who have been reading my blog for a while, are totally aware that back in the days all my desperate tries to complete a pull up, ended with me hanging from the bar, as if I was a hoodie on the wash line… i.e. I couldn’t pull myself up even to save my life. Then, I decided to order a set of resistance bands and do band assisted pull ups. I started with the biggest bands and I gradually became stronger. Then, one day, all of a sudden I decided to try an unassisted pull up and for my surprise I DID IT!

So, initially I started worshiping the bands and I used them with my clients as well.

Some time went by, I gathered some more experience and knowledge and I changed my opinion. That’s why I wanted to share with you the conclusions I made, and if your opinion resonates with mine, you could proceed the way I do. If not, I will be glad to hear your arguments.

After all…

The set of bands consist of bands with different colors and each color corresponds to a particular load capacity. The wider the band, the heavier weight it can handle. So, people who have weaker upper body and can not do pull ups, would be supposed to use the wider band for assisted pull ups. And then progress, until they start using the most narrow bands and make the pull up harder.

Or at least this was my point of view at the beginning. I did the vertical pull down and the assisted pull ups. But today I see things differently and this was not the best approach!

My observations show me that when you ask somebody, who has weaker upper body, and especially someone who is heavier, to do a band assisted pull up, even if it’d be with a wider band, he would rarely manage to complete the pull up with proper technique. Usually, he/she will compensate for the lack of strength by not pulling with the muscles on the back, but just with the shoulders. Besides that most people usually have a imbalance between both hands and you will inevitably notice this when they do a couple reps. Then the strongest hand will try to compensate and do more work.

So, I came to the conclusion that bands have their role, but not at the beginning of your preparation. What I am trying to say is that it is far better to emphasize on the vertical pull downs, plus other pulling movements, but do not rush into doing assisted pull ups.

In my opinion bands should be included when the trainee has advanced, when he has mastered the proper pulling technique, i.e. he is using his back muscles and not trying to compensate with the shoulder; when he has become stronger and he needs just a final push to complete his first unassisted pull up.

That’s when you can use the most narrow bands, with which you can do assisted pull ups. This will let the trainee to overcome the mind barrier and in the same time it will give the final push, which will help him do a body weight pull up.

I know that sometimes, in our desire to improve or do more exercises, we skip the boring, lame preparation, which in reality is what we desperately need, in order to build the foundations. I guarantee you that you will manage to complete a body weight pull up, with proper technique, a lot faster if you emphasize on the vertical pull downs and other pulling movements, than if you rush into using the resistance bands.

Sure, if you are advanced and you need just that final push, you can go ahead and use the bands. But in all other cases, these exercises ( read HERE) will help you become stronger!

Check out HERE one more exercise I changed my mind about!


P.S. If you liked this post, please take a minute and share it with your friends! I’d greatly appreciate it!

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Ако статията ви е харесала, споделете я с приятелите си. Благодаря, че помагате да достигне до повече хора.

Ines Subashka

Инес Субашка е основател на IFS - зали за кондиционни тренировки и мобилност. Автор е на 6 книги за здравословно хранене и движение.

Ела да тренираш в някоя от залите ни

Предизвикай себе си и направи крачка към по-здравото си Аз. Груповите тренировки в IFS са различни – при нас броят на трениращите в група е ограничен и всеки има различна тренировка, изготвена според индивидуалните му нужди. Тренировки има през целия ден и ще намериш удобно време и локация, според графика ти. Очакваме те в IFS.

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I am a ‘something-searcher person” and I have devoted my life to the mission to reveal myself, to improve, to collect the pieces of puzzle in my own nature, so that to give and to receive from life as much as possible. My Life is history, full of broken dreams, falls, disappointments and finally achieved awareness, that it all depends on me and that each opportunity can be a materialized reality. We only have to think and act in a way, which will lead us on the road to its implementation. The most valuable resources we have are our time and health, and our Body is the instrument, through which we use them, to crate the world we live in. I dedicated my life to share myself, the wisdom and experience, which had left after the mistakes I had done. I am doing this in order to help people find their way, which will let them “’reinvent”’ themselves, to restore their health, confidence and trust for life. I wish they could realize their own potential. Training is rehearsal for the life itself; this is the place, where on a few square meters in the IFS you can experience each of the possible sensations- triumph, fall, disappointment, hope, will, weakness, and most of all power. The place, where in “monitoring conditions”” you can remind your body how to move correctly, how to work in your interest. Everything I have tried to achieve through IFS and the trainings is to help people bring back their consciousness, health and freedom to be who they are-without doubting. I have given myself time to re-build and to re-invent myself! Give yourself time as well. Come and train with us in IFS!