Exercise Profile
  • Target Muscle Group
  • Exercise TypeStrength
  • Equipment RequiredBands
  • MechanicsCompound
  • Force TypePull (Bilateral)
  • Experience LevelBeginner
  • Secondary Muscles
    Abs, Biceps, Shoulders, Upper Back
Target Muscle Group

Lats

Lats Muscle Anatomy Diagram

Resistance Band Assisted Pull Up (From Knee) Overview

The resistance band assisted pull up (from knee) is a great exercise for beginners to use on their way to progressing to a bodyweight pull up.

The resistance band helps remove some of the load allowing the lifter to train the pull up motion. This helps them build the pulling muscles (lats, biceps) so they can eventually progress to performing the traditional bodyweight pull up.

Resistance Band Assisted Pull Up (From Knee) Instructions

  1. Attach a band to the bar and loop the end around your knee.
  2. Using a pronated grip, grasp the pull up bar with a slightly wider than shoulder width grip.
  3. Take a deep breath, squeeze your glutes and brace your abs. Depress the shoulder blades and then drive the elbows straight down to the floor while activating the lats.
  4. Pull your chin towards the bar until the lats are fully contracted, then slowly lower yourself back to the start position and repeat for the assigned number of repetitions.

Resistance Band Assisted Pull Up (From Knee) Tips

  1. To decrease bicep involvement, use a false (thumbless grip).
  2. Try to keep a neutral head position (looking straight ahead or slightly up) as hyperextending the neck can lead to compensations throughout the spine.
  3. Avoid falling into overextension of the lumbar spine by squeezing your glutes and bracing your abs.
  4. The pull up is completed when the lats are fully flexed, don’t continue pulling and compensate with the pecs. When this occurs, the elbows will flare up behind the body, the shoulder will round forward, and you’ll begin to feel pressure in the front of your shoulders.
  5. A lifter’s segment length will determine whether or not they can actually get their chin over the bar, it’s not an absolute for everyone.
  6. Lower to almost full extension of the elbow but avoid locking out completely as this can place excessive strain on the ligamentous structures within the elbow and shoulder.
  7. If you can’t complete a single bodyweight pull up, start with slow negatives (add weight when these can be accomplished under control) or flexed arm hangs in the top position.
  8. Ditch the straps and kips, neither one is necessary or recommended.
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