Pull Up Alternatives?

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I travel lots so I have a fitness regime that I can do without any equipment. The only thing is pull-ups. Its usually pretty easy to find something to pull up on but occasionally I am at a loss.


Any suggestions on an alternative that I can do without equipment. The closest thing I can think of are handstand pushups.


Thanks
 

Uncle

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Get one of those door pull up bars. You can't do kipping pull ups but other than than they're great.
 

jks9199

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Handstand pushups aren't a substitute; the pull up is a PULL motion, and pushups are PUSH. Different muscles are used (lats & biceps vs. pecs and triceps respectively). You might consider getting some of the elastic exercise bands; they're quite portable, and easily stuffed in a suitcase. A suspension rig is another idea; they also don't take up a lot of space.

A variant push-up exercise that gets into the lats is an isometric version. Start from the down position, face down on the ground. Place your hands on the ground, with your fingers pointed towards your feet (reverse of a normal push up) and close to your ribcage, and press yourself up about a quarter of the way, until you're a couple of inches of the ground, and hold that position for 30 to 60 seconds. You can do multiple repetitions or hold for longer periods or both...
 

Cyriacus

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Go for a walk and find somewere with a bar?

Optionally, what Uncle said.
 

punisher73

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You can do inverse pulls. Kind of a bodyweight barbell row. Here is a short video clip.


If you have a sturdy table you can do it on them. Or if you can get two chairs and a broom or closet hanging rod to put between them and space it so there isn't alot of weight hanging directly on it, you can do that as well.
 
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sfs982000

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You can do inverse pulls. Kind of a bodyweight barbell row. Here is a short video clip.


If you have a sturdy table you can do it on them. Or if you can get two chairs and a broom or closet hanging rod to put between them and space it so there isn't alot of weight hanging directly on it, you can do that as well.

The inverse pulls really burn your lats if done properly. I have shoulder issues which tend to make regular pull ups difficult for me, but these don't aggrevate my shoulders nearly as bad and I get a great pump from them. Definitely recommend them if you're able to.
 
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punisher73

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what are kipping pull ups?

Old school would call "kipping" bad form, but it was made more famous by crossfit people and utilizes alot of body swing to do the pull up.
 
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punisher73

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My Sanda sifu did all his pull-ups on a tree limb in hisback yard, spring, summer, fall, winter, rain or shine, snow and cold.

I've heard you mention various training drills and ideas from your Sanda sifu. Would you be willing to start a thread discussing those? I always like hearing about traditional methods and try to incorporate them into my training.
 

Xue Sheng

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I've heard you mention various training drills and ideas from your Sanda sifu. Would you be willing to start a thread discussing those? I always like hearing about traditional methods and try to incorporate them into my training.

Not much to discuss actually and certainly not enough for a long discussion

He used trees for targets to train striking, palm strikes, knee, elbow, foot, no fist strikes
He used trees for a gym, pull-ups
He did lots push-up and full sit-ups and lots and lots of kicks in the air (he originally told me 500 per side per day but I got him down to 200 per side per day)
He did Tuishou, drills, applications and sparring.

Where he grew up it was rather cold in the winter, I do not remember if he said it averaged -20C or -20F but either way he got use to training in the cold. Also he grew up in and was trained during the Cultural Revolution so there was not a whole lot of equipment around and you really did not want to call a lot of attention to yourself
 

Kong Soo Do

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You might consider getting some of the elastic exercise bands; they're quite portable, and easily stuffed in a suitcase.

Excellent suggestion. I've used Lifeline USA resistance bands for nearly 12 years. They are fantastic when I'm not at home and very durable. You can get the TNT power cable that would allow you to do squats, deadlifts, overhead press and with the door attachment in various positions you can do rows, tricep pull downs, punching and various types of curling to include mimicking a pull up.

With the PPU3 (power push up 3) you can do chest work as well as lunges, rowing, deadlifting etc. Almost any exercise you can do in a gym can be done with the cables. And they can be put into a small bag.

Punisher said:
I always like hearing about traditional methods and try to incorporate them into my training.

I've got a few that are cheap but effective. For the grip go to Lowe's or Home Depot and get the thickest closet dowel of around 6 or more feet in length. Standing in horse stance you extend the arm till there is just a slight bend at the elbow. The dowel is straight up at arms length, perpendicular to the ground. Slowly lower the dowel to parallel with the ground using just the motion of the wrist. Then slowly raise it back up and repeat. The closer to the end of the dowel the harder it will be. For added resistance you can add a rope and some weight. You can also go side-to-side as well as up and down.

Get a short dowel, perhaps two feet or so. Drill a hole in the middle all the way through. Run a strong rope through and attach something heavy. Grip both ends and roll it up and down while holding it out in front of you. Called a windlass.

Wet a simple towel. Wring it out till it is dry. Old wrestlers trick for grip strength.

Get two bricks or jars with sand or water with a wide grip. Get into horse stance and grip the tops with fingers and hold.

Stand in horse stance with arms out at your sides palms facing out. Grip them into fists as tight as possible and then open. Repeat as fast as you can, never sacrificing a good tight grip for speed but keeping speed up. Do for one minute straight and count. The record from what I've read is 300 times in one minute! Your forearms will be screaming.

Of course handstand push ups, body weight squats, various types of push ups etc.
 

wingchun100

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If you get a resistance band with a door attachment (something that loops around a door hinge), that would work. :)
 
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