I've been doing some work in the gym at my school over the last few days, and I did some pull ups, but can only do 3-4. Is this bad? It didn't really leave me with any ache in my arms either after, whereas other exercises like curls do. Got any ideas?
Pullups emphasize the back so that's where you should feel it the most; your biceps assist the movement. You can try kipping once you get too tired, or doing assisted pullups to failure if you don't think 3-4 is enough.
Personally, 3-4 reps is my sweet spot for strength development, as long as you are going to failure. Keep at it, up your pullup sets to 5-6 sets (try to get at least 20 reps) and you should start improving quickly.
Pull-ups are to your biceps what bench press is to your triceps - sometimes they ache, sometimes they don't. The important muscles that it's working are in your back, just like the important muscles on bench are in your chest.
As far as 3-4 reps... well, that's where most people who've never done them start out. You can work with an assist machine, or assist yourself using your toes on a bench, do jumping pull-ups, kip (use body english to get yourself up), or do negatives. Personally, once I got up to doing a few sets of 5, I started adding weight.
Don't ask for a lighter load. Ask for a stronger back.
Jump on a pulldown machine to strengthen your back first, with a lighter weight than your body.. Then try some pullups.
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I've used an assisted pull up and dip machine before, and thought it was really good. Made my arms ache like mad too, and my shoulders and back, come to think of it.
Just keep doing pull-ups. You don't need to mess around with anything fancy, just do pull-ups once a week each set to failure. Do this for three months and you'll be alright. As a noob that's all you really need.
I only managed 3, 2 and 1 reps over my three sets the very first time I ever did pull-ups. The following week I got 5, 3, 2. Four weeks later I got 6, 4, 2. So just keep at it for a bit.
As a different option, this works too: http://www.cbass.com/Synaptic.htm
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3-4 is better the none, you'll pull out more, as long you keep working on it
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The main thing is that you've at least got something to work with, also as others said it would be a good idea to use an assist machine to build your strength. Or if you've got a partner bend your legs and let them help you do 3 or 4 more until burnout.
Ok thanks for the advice guys.
It depends on how much you weigh and how tall you are.Originally Posted by Nickthebassist
A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
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Prime example: meOriginally Posted by Sensei
I can't do a pullup from a dead hang. I can get one if I start with a bit of my feet on the floor, but even then it's only one..lol
Everyone should be able to do pullups, or be working towards them!
3-4 pullups is only bad if it's less than you used to be doing. It's great if that's more than you did a few weeks ago!
Don't worry about it... I am still using the assisted pullup machine after 6 months of training but after a lot of hard work I am almost done with using it. The important thing is try and do it with the right form, if your doing them for your lats, it is a lot harder to do a pullup if you are primarily pulling with your back rather then your arms.
With a little work you should be up to weighted pullups in no time.
Make sure to go ALL THE WAY DOWN... Sooo many people don't do this, many people only go about halfway.
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I dont touch pull ups, as i fear i woulden't even make one :')
Something that worked for me, that is loosely similar to Pavel's method linked above (by Rex), was to set a goal, say total 10 reps - and then take as many sets as you need to reach 10 reps. Each session, you try to get those 10 reps in less sets until you can do 1 set of 10 reps. Then you start over with a higher goal...
I weigh 156lbs.
where did that come from?
People were asking how much I weigh. Just one other thing, if I go all theway down in a pull up I end up with my arms hanging straight, and in this position I cant get myself back up.
When you bench do you bring the bar half way down or do you bring it all the way down to your chest? Obviously you bring it down to your chest, a greater range of motion makes an exercise more effective assuming of course that your using good form. If you can't go all the way down with your body weight then do some assisted pullup work until you can do body weight pullups for 6-8 reps or so with a full range of motion.Originally Posted by Nickthebassist
And don't worry about using the assisted pullup machine for a while to get to that point, it has taken me 6 months to get to bodyweight pullups with good form. Your form is more important then the weight you are doing, do it the right way
I agree, but I'm dieting my way to them!Originally Posted by MixmasterNash
I can defintly agree on that one. I am 5'6ish at 135 pounds and can do 20-30 pull ups at once, and I do not involve them into any of my workouts. I have always been able to do no less than 15 pull ups/chinups all my life with no weight lifting because I am smaller.Originally Posted by mrelwooddowd
30 is just freaking beast man, holy crap!
19 yrs old
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I'm almost the same but weaker than you (5'7, 135 lbs.) I just tested right now and got 15. I struggled at 15. *Gasp* .... *Gasp* .... *Gasp*.... Damnit and I do chin-ups once a week.Originally Posted by Stepinfetch
My biceps are on fire right now lol.
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