Best or very good Pull up assist bands

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Steve W.

Level 7 Valued Member
Looped resistance bands as originated by d@#$ Hartzell and Jump Stretch are now a pretty generic item. They are all pretty much the same. Personally, I get mine at elitefts.com.

However, I am not a fan of using bands for pull up assistance. I think the force curve of the bands (more assistance at the bottom and diminishing toward the top) is not a natural match for the pull up, and I think the body position of using a knee or foot to anchor the band is awkward and not conducive to developing a good hollow position.

There are lots of ways to cook pull ups if you can't do them unassisted:
--Using a prop (bench, chair, stool, step ladder, etc.) to raise the feet.
--Inverted rows on rings or TRX at various angles.
--Straight arm hangs at the bottom.
--Flexed arm hangs at the top.
--Controllled negatives.
--Partials from the top.
--Partials from the bottom.
 

jrosto

Level 1 Valued Member
It may be a mental thing, but I've done a lot of what you recommend Steve, yet still can not achieve a good pull up. The main things I do are slow, good form, negatives and scapular pulls into hollow body dead hangs. I've also done a lot of KB rows, inverted pull ups and the like.

Last week I finally gave in and ordered resistance bands from Rogue Fitness (I just like the brand), and am GTG with the 65# band. I really like being able to do the entire movement, and have made a ton of progress in this first week. I'll move down to the 50# band tomorrow.

I'm still doing the negatives and hollow body dead hangs once every two to three days.

One of my biggest goals for this year is to do a pull up all the way to my transplant scar, the bands are kind of a last ditch effort to jump start progress towards that goal.
 

Steve W.

Level 7 Valued Member
It may be a mental thing, but I've done a lot of what you recommend Steve, yet still can not achieve a good pull up. The main things I do are slow, good form, negatives and scapular pulls into hollow body dead hangs. I've also done a lot of KB rows, inverted pull ups and the like.

Last week I finally gave in and ordered resistance bands from Rogue Fitness (I just like the brand), and am GTG with the 65# band. I really like being able to do the entire movement, and have made a ton of progress in this first week. I'll move down to the 50# band tomorrow.

I'm still doing the negatives and hollow body dead hangs once every two to three days.

One of my biggest goals for this year is to do a pull up all the way to my transplant scar, the bands are kind of a last ditch effort to jump start progress towards that goal.
One thing you don't mention trying is a prop to raise the feet (in a piked position with feet in front of you). This takes some of your body weight and also allows you to use your legs for assistance if needed. You can fine tune the amount of assistance by the height of the prop, how far in front of the bar you place it, and whether and how much you actively use your legs. Using a prop should allow you to do full range reps with the minimum assistance necessary throughout the range of motion.

I just think it's a more natural and effective way to get to full range reps than using bands--but if you are successful with the bands, then power to you.
 

jrosto

Level 1 Valued Member
Thanks Steve; I tried the prop assisted with a step stool, but it really didn't feel right. The image below and the site it came from is what I used as a guide. I'll give it a shot again and see what happens.



I was able to drop a band size today and plan on making this a fairly short lived N-1 experiment.
 

Karen Smith

Level 6 Valued Member
Master Certified Instructor
Iron Maiden
Thanks Steve; I tried the prop assisted with a step stool, but it really didn't feel right. The image below and the site it came from is what I used as a guide. I'll give it a shot again and see what happens.



I was able to drop a band size today and plan on making this a fairly short lived N-1 experiment.
I would be happy to help and take a look at your technique if you want to send me a video to Karen.smith@strongfirst.com
Also you mentioned transplant, lets discuss that via email also and could be a factor in your progress.
 
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