If you are following the functional training series we have covered the deadlift, the lunge, the plank and the push up. Between these exercises we have almost completely worked the body in a very balanced manner. We lack only the pull up. Yes ... the pull up. I know most of you are thinking ... I cannot do a pull up. That is ok. Hang in there with me.
Just as the push up works the 3 major muscle groups involved with pushing the chest, shoulders and triceps; the pull ups works the 2 main muscle groups that pull the back and biceps. The pull up, like the other exercises in the functional training series integrates muscles rather than isolates. The pull up is the perfect marriage with push up creating balance between the pushing muscle groups and the pulling. This balance builds proper ratios of strength, range of movement and posture in the upper body. The pull up is also a core strengthening exercise.
A great workout series would be to do for example 3 rounds of the following:
10-15 Push Ups
5–10 Pull Ups
6 Deadlifts or 10 Lunges Per Leg
30 Second Plank
Pull ups can be modified so that almost anyone can do them. Different grips may be used – overhand / underhand. Below are some videos of modified pull ups that can be used.
As always before beginning an exercise program consult your physician. Make sure you have a spotter and have set up / using all equipment in a safe manner and as intended.