A pullup is exactly what it sounds like, a bodyweight exercise where you pull up your weight. Pullups don’t require a gym or expensive equipment. There are numerous benefits of pullups. I could go on all day about why you should work pullups into your routine, but today I will just focus on the top 6 benefits of pullups.
A pullup is extremely convenient because you can do them in almost any open door frame. All you need is a bar and your body to get in a workout. You can buy a bar that fits securely into a door frame and will support your weight. Unlike most other gym equipment a pullup bar is inexpensive. The bars range from $20-$50. For those of you who are handy, you could easily make a bar yourself. All you need is a metal bar and a way to attach it to a wall securely. Therefore, outside of pushups and situps, pullups are one of the most convenient exercises.
2. Varying Intensity
Many exercises make it difficult to change the intensity. However, with pullups, varying the intensity of your workout is as simple as strapping a weight around your waist or feet. Regularly changing the intensity of your workout is a key to building muscle. Varying the intensity of your workout allows you to shock your muscles and continue to grow.
3. Compound Excercises
A compound exercise works out multiple muscle groups at the same time. Compound exercises increase muscle tearing and repair, as well as release more testosterone into your blood stream. Everyone knows that squats are the best exercise for your lower body, given the number of muscle groups they work out at once. Think of pullups as squats for your upper body. The exercise targets your biceps and most of the muscles in your back. This makes it a great workout for anyone trying to add muscle to their torso.
One of the biggest benefits of pullups is the number of variations. The way you grip the bar allows you to change which muscles you target with your workout. Varying your grip doesn’t require any additional equipment. The traditional wide grip overhand pullup is great for targeting your lats. A close grip, or reverse grip pullup, also know as a chin up is great for targeting your biceps. So if big arms are your goal, make sure you don’t skip your chin ups.
5. Fat Loss
While cardio may be perfect for elevating your heart rate and helping your burn fat, pullups also achieve the same goal. Strength training is a great way to build muscle. Extra muscle also helps your body burn more fat. The more muscle you put on, the higher your caloric burn will be throughout the day. Elevating your heart rate also increases the number of calories you burn.
6. Grip Strength
Finally, pullups increase your grip strength. Grip strength is crucial for someone who uses weight training as part of their workout routine. Anyone that lifts heavy weights knows just how important grip strength is. Luckily pullups are one of the best exercises for increasing grip strength.
Conclusion and Tips
As you can see adding pullups to your workout routine offers many benefits. This complex exercise will accelerate your muscle growth and increase your grip strength. However, pullups can be intimidating at first. The task is tough, especially for someone just starting in the gym. Don’t let this discourage you. Even if you can only do 1 or 2 pullups, do them. If you need assistance to perform the exercise, use and assisted pullup machine. Something is better than nothing.
Don’t try to take the easy way out. Remember with exercise you only get out what you are willing to put in. Skipping pullups for pull downs is a mistake. While this may seem like the same exercise, it’s not. People are lazy these days, don’t fall into the same trap. Also, you are much more likely to find a free pullup bar in the gym than you are to find a free pull down machine.
If you are unsure of how to add pullups to your workout machine, a personal trainer may be able to help you. Consulting a personal trainer will allow you to get the benefits of a new exercise without worrying about hurting yourself. An experienced personal trainer will be able to help you decide what variation is best for you. You certainly don’t want to go overboard and injure yourself.