T Nation

Pull-up Variation To Try


#1

I was just screwing around on my chin-up bar today and "discovered" an interesting variation I can't recall seeing anywhere.

Hang from the bar using a pull-up grip (pronated, palms down). Now lift your legs straight out in front of you like at the top of a hanging leg raise. Do some pull-ups, while maintaining your legs directly in front of you at all times.

I originally gave it a try to see if my abs would get a decent workout while doing pull-ups, but I noticed when I completed a set, my upper back and traps were burning in a good way.

Give it a try. Might be a neat variation for hitting abs and back at once. My upper and mid traps feel pumped as hell after doing a few sets. They must contract to counterbalance the weight hanging in front of you.


#2

L-pullups are fun. I think it puts a bit more stress on your pulling muscles (as opposed to a standard pullup) because of the principle of leverage. Basically, instead of the weight of your legs being directly beneath the musculature doing the pulling, you've got them out and away from that point, so it puts those muscles at a disadvantaged levered position.

You've increased the length of the lever, which requires more force to move.

Or something like that. I'm an artist, not a physicist.

Take it easy,
Toby


#3

you are correct but it would not be your arms supplying the torque necessary to keep your legs elevated. It comes from your core.


#4

Right, but my point (poorly worded) was that, if you have the strength to keep your legs elevated (utilizing your core), it puts more strain on your arms and back to do the pulling. So, hypothetically, lets say your in some kind of harness or sling that keeps your body in that L position (bent at the waist/hip area) without any effor on your part. Doing a pullup like that is harder than doing a standard pullup with your legs directly beneath you (for your arms and lats).

I think.

I guess a more understandable example of what I'm thinking is holding a sledge hammer with your hand touching the head and doing a front shoulder raise. Now, hold the sledge hammer by the bottom of the handle and do a front shoulder raise, keeping the handle in line with the rest of your arm. You've increased the length of the lever (the distance from the weight being moved from the muscles around the joints moving), so theoretically it'll "feel" heavier to your shoulder muscles. The forearm/grip muscles are the weak link in the chain (like the abs in the L pullup), but if you were strong enough in that department, or if the handle was strapped to your forearm it wouldn't be an issue.

I guess to increase the difficulty via leverage of an L pullup, you just need to (with legs straight) get your feet further away from your shoulders horizontally until your doing a full front lever pullup I guess. To make an L pullup easier (but still harder than a regular pullup for the pulling muscles) you could do them with bent legs (like hanging knee raises with a pullup).

Just thinking out loud.

Take it easy
Toby


#5

The "running man" pullups in that Thug workout video are pretty similar and fun too.


#6

I guess to increase the difficulty via leverage of an L pullup, you just need to (with legs straight) get your feet further away from your shoulders horizontally until your doing a full front lever pullup I guess.

Exactly right. Anyone (like me) who's ever wondered how gymnasts get that level of muscular development through what are essentially bodyweight exercises should watch them knock out 30-odd front lever pullups.
They do all tend to be about 5'6'' though. What you gain on the swings..