It’s time to learn what the benefits of weight pull-ups are. Push one’s limit and achieve greater fitness heights by adding a challenging twist to regular pull-ups.
In this article:
10 Amazing Weighted Pull-Ups Benefits
What Is a Weighted Pull Up?
A weighted pull-up is a pull -up variation that uses weights to add more tension and stress to the muscles. This can be done by either using weight belts or vests.
The added weights in the movement can result in the following benefits:
1. Increased Back Muscle Growth
Some of the important factors needed for muscle growth are training volume and amount of load. Incorporating weight pull-ups in one’s workout can provide the necessary tension and overloading to push the back muscles to adapt and grow.
With the increased muscular demand to perform the movement, stubborn muscle fibers are forced to adapt and create greater force, bringing in more tension that translates to hypertrophy or muscle growth.
2. Increased Upper Body Strength
Training with lower reps and heavier loads is a useful strategy when working for back strength and maximum pulling power. This is extremely helpful for people who want to increase muscular recruitment, overall upper body size and strength, and force output like weightlifters and powerlifters.
3. Better Grip and Bicep Strength
The strength of one’s grip and biceps contributes to pulling power and prevention of injuries, but these are often overlooked.
When doing a deadlift, for example, a large amount of isometric force is needed from the forearms muscles and biceps to endure the load and prevent the muscle fibers from lengthening throughout the movement.
Isometric Force Definition: This is a muscle contraction that generates force without changing the length of the muscle.
Weighted pull-ups are great for improving one’s back, biceps, and forearm strength in a way that decreases the load on the other parts of the body.
4. Preps You for More Advanced Techniques
Doing pull-ups can serve as a solid preparation for more advanced movements. Pull-ups alone can’t provide the needed tension for muscle growth, increase in endurance, and performance improvement.
If a lifter wants to perform drop sets, giant sets, weighted negatives, easing the body off through weighted, pull-ups are the way to go. By starting off with this movement, there is a decreased risk of injuries when doing advanced exercises.
5. Helps in Getting Rid of Leg Drive
Leg drive or hip flexion is one of the common cheats people resort to when doing pull-ups. Generally, contracting the hip flexors may help one in reaching the top of the bar.
This cheat can actually damage your spine alignment and posture. In fact, too much leg drive can lead to an arched back and hyperextended cervical and lumbar spine.
Leg drive can also affect one’s shoulders. It can be prevented when doing pull-ups since the added weights keep the legs in line with the upper body.
RELATED: How To Do A Proper Pull-Up Routine
6. Better Posture Alignment
Building on item number 5, weighted pull-ups can promote posture alignment due to stretching. This happens if the legs are kept straight and aligned with the upper body when doing the pull-up.
The added weight pulls the lower body down and reinforces the natural arch of the spine. If a lifter wants to correct his or her posture, doing weighted pull-ups may help.
7. Bigger Lats
Thanks to the improved posture induced by weighted pull-ups, the lats are also better activated in the movement. The better the body alignment when doing pull-ups, the greater lats activation one can get.
8. Experience Full-Body Tension
When doing regular pull-ups, only the upper body and torso are subject to tension. Strap on some weights to pull down the lower body and one gets a full-body tension when working out.
When one exerts effort to hold the load on the feet or between the legs, the result is more concentration and body activation. Body parts usually unengaged like the feet, face, and neck, are also included in the movement.
This produces more motor control and increases power output, something that will be beneficial when a lifter takes on more advanced movements.
9. Added Shoulder Mobility
One can get a better range of motion when doing vertical exercises like weighted pull-ups than horizontal exercises like seated rows or bent rows.
Aside from improved strength, one can also get better shoulder mobility from performing this exercise. It’s perfect for those who do sports that require a lot of shoulder movements.
10. Engages the Abs
Aside from the upper body muscles, doing pull-ups also engages the core in the movement. After doing weighted pull-ups one should notice how sore the abs are, too.
While the main muscles for the movement are the biceps and lats, the abs receive increasing significant tension from the added weight. The core works to stabilize the body and the load suspended from the dipping belt.
Say one’s routine has 8-12 reps, that’s also 8-12 times of core action while performing a dynamic upper body exercise.
Additionally, when one reaches the top of the bar, the body naturally assumes a hollow posture to get the chin up and over the bar. With the weight pulling the lower body down, this can be prevented, resulting in utmost tension to the abs.
Adding weighted pull-ups to one’s routine may eventually help in getting those six-pack abs!
Weighted Pull-Up Tips
Here are some important tips on how one can pull off the weighted pull-up tips safely and properly:
- Start with one’s body weight. Focus on completing 10 perfect pull-ups and then progress to the weighted variation.
- Vary the grip. This will improve the pulling power.
- Don’t forget to take a break. Take a rest in between sets. Take no longer than a minute and a half of rest.
Check out this video from ScottHermanFitness as he shows how to do weighted pull-up:
One of the greatest mistakes a lifter can make is becoming complacent. Don’t fall into this trap and constantly find a way to level up the game.
How have weighted pull-ups helped your body? Let us know in the comments section below!