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Thread: Alternatives to the Pull Up Bar?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
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    Houston, Tx
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    Alternatives to the Pull Up Bar?

    Are there any exercises that come close to mimicking using the pull up bar? We have one, but it doesn't work in our home. I don't use a gym but I do have full weights and bench at home. I've searched and searched but nothing is coming up. Can weights be substituted for that one exercise?

    Any help would be appreciated!

    Thanks!!!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    you can put a wedge or something under a door and use the top to pull yourself up. but, even better than that is a tree branch.
    i've also used landings or the backs of stairs in apartment buildings. and, in a pinch, you can throw a thick-ish rope or a towel over some goal posts or higher branches and get a good pull up workout that way.

    also, consider getting a different kind of pull up bar for your home. my last apartment, i couldn't use the doorway frame kind, but the kind that you screw in to a doorway works just as good...and usually costs less

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by redskater View Post
    Are there any exercises that come close to mimicking using the pull up bar? We have one, but it doesn't work in our home. I don't use a gym but I do have full weights and bench at home. I've searched and searched but nothing is coming up. Can weights be substituted for that one exercise?

    Any help would be appreciated!

    Thanks!!!!!
    Nothing can replace pullups Now, you can do bent-over barbell rows to work the back (or bent-over dumbbell rows), for bodyweight you can use a barbell in a rack or a table, get underneath it, and do reverse pushups (or whatever they are called), but nothing physiologically can replace the pullups (which is probably the most "human" back exercise).

    --Me

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamm View Post
    Nothing can replace pullups Now, you can do bent-over barbell rows to work the back (or bent-over dumbbell rows), for bodyweight you can use a barbell in a rack or a table, get underneath it, and do reverse pushups (or whatever they are called), but nothing physiologically can replace the pullups (which is probably the most "human" back exercise).

    --Me
    What about holding a plank and doing dumbell rows? Does that help? I do those sometimes but I can't do any pullups and it's not likely I ever will be able to. It's like I have to start not at square one but square 1 - 100.
    Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

  5. #5
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    Our doors are over 8ft! even with a step ladder it's difficult to reach. My husband just sees hospital bills if I attempt it! Thanks for the ideas, I might just have to get a frame, not sure hubby wants to be drilling holes in the wall..... but maybe.....

    Thanks for the help

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by redskater View Post
    Our doors are over 8ft! even with a step ladder it's difficult to reach. My husband just sees hospital bills if I attempt it! Thanks for the ideas, I might just have to get a frame, not sure hubby wants to be drilling holes in the wall..... but maybe.....

    Thanks for the help
    imagine the hospital bills if you stay sedentary.

    i had forgotten about inverse rows...adamm's suggestion. they are a great pre-pullups exercise and can be just about anywhere.
    the holes you would need for screw-in doorway pull up bar are minimal...less than the hinges on the door. that's a pretty small price to pay for all the benefits of a pull up bar.

  7. #7
    Have you got anywhere to hang a set of rings? Outside on a tree, some hooks inside a door frame (with 8ft doors should be perfect). I travel with my rings and its really pretty rare that there is nowhere to rig them.

    Other pulling options would be climbing (trees, lamp posts, roof beams), horizontal rows (under a table, bar or TRX), towel rows (wrap a towel round a door handle sit back and pull) dumbbell rows, how about fixing a rope to a tyre and pulling towards you. Of course don't forget crawling- maybe even more primal than climbing- just pull yourself along the ground using your arms.

  8. #8
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    Sep 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandstone View Post
    Have you got anywhere to hang a set of rings? Outside on a tree, some hooks inside a door frame (with 8ft doors should be perfect). I travel with my rings and its really pretty rare that there is nowhere to rig them.
    I'm curious about the rings you use when you travel. Where do you use them and how do they mount?

    I travel a lot for business, so having the ability to conduct a workout on my own time would be great. Push ups and planks are easy enough...but pull ups (and a Grok hang) are harder...sounds like you have a solution!

    Thanks!

    Jim

  9. #9
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    Aug 2012
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    Dorset, UK
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    if you have the money, a trx suspension system, either a genuine one or a cheaper alternative like the jungle gym, or a home made system (see youtube) is fab for all the possible bodyweight exercises you could contemplate. If you make your own, just buy a door anchor attachment on amazon and you are good to go in hotels etc.

    I love mine, one legged squats, planks with suspended legs and host more. The genuine TRX is not cheap but it is a good bit of kit if it saves you on a lot of other stuff and gym membership

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Navy87Guy View Post
    I'm curious about the rings you use when you travel. Where do you use them and how do they mount?

    I travel a lot for business, so having the ability to conduct a workout on my own time would be great. Push ups and planks are easy enough...but pull ups (and a Grok hang) are harder...sounds like you have a solution!


    Thanks!

    Jim
    You can get a cheap set on Amazon for about 30 bucks- 2 rings and 2 cargo type straps that loop around and feed through a buckle, they sit in a mesh pouch about 8" square. Once I got asked at an airport check in what they were (theres some metal on the buckle strap that showed up on the scanner) but the guy was just interested and let me go through no problem.

    I just fix them anywhere I can- a tree branch, garage roof, if I'm in a hotel usually there is often somewhere in a car park. It's very rare there is nowhere to rig them.

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