It hit me – while looking at some girl this morning who prefers to go “barefoot” everywhere or many places apparently, hanging on to some sort of “pulling apparatus”.
The first thing I noticed wasn’t her soles she was displaying on full view, rather, the way she was “hanging” (literally) on to the pull-up apparatus by the tips of her fingers.
I could have taught her proper form, as I did a certain Annie – but then that would cause calluses to sprout, of course. Hehe.
And she wasn’t into doing pull-ups anyway this girl – more interested in the “barefoot culture”, selfies etc.
Annie, of course, was the one I wrote about a few days ago who after I showed how to do pull-ups (and asked for a slight massage) became so infatuated with me that I was literally considering even changing my home address the way she started to literally STALK ME.
I avoided her on WeShat, I changed my workout timings, I chose different routes on the hill (which somehow, suddenly, she started to climb as well) – nothing doing. Hehe.
“At least you can **** her for free”, I remember a certain “kate” telling me.
I never wanted to …
Anyway – point of this isn’t women, it’s pull-ups.
And its the nasty elbow injury I picked up a while back.
one that yours truly, pull-up stud has been struggling to figure out JUST HOW i picked it up!
For a guy that does high rep bodyweight stuff, numbers aren’t the issue.
For a guy that has been doing pull-ups for years, form and practice isn’t an issue.
It’s one of those tennis elbow type injuries, I still do pull-ups with it, much like I did fingertip pushups on a sprained, injured thumb as well (remember??) – but it hurts like a SOB in some positions, and it (no pun) makes stuff like lifting up a mattress (light weight) from the floor with one finger or hand incredibly painful (although I’m doing pull-ups in sets of 10 with it!).
A sprained tendon which I’m curing “slowly but surely” with exercise, I’d rather that than ice it and hear people say “it will hurt in winter”.
But I’ve been wondering HOW I picked it up.
And as I saw the girl hanging on to the bar, it hit me.
I’ve been doing my pull-ups INDOORS for the past month or so, probably last couple of months (for the most part). Business has kept me EXTREMELY busy – especially with the new company set up etc – full on!
And that means I’ve been doing them on my doorway chinning bar, far thinner than most of the ultra thick steel (or iron) bars I do them on outside.
Now, doorway chinning bars force you to focus on form more than if you’re outside, I’ve written about that before, and how and why, so they still give you a super workout.
I’ve got thick grips on it too – which make the damn thing harder to grip than thick iron bars – due to the “squeeze” nature of these thangs, they really fry the grip.
But it’s not so much the girth (again, no puns!) of the bar that caused problems, or the difference in grip.
It’s – and I remember it – one day, my form swayed, and there I was, doing pull-ups without the thumb like most of the world does.
No biggie at that point.
But the next day, I felt it.
When you do pull-ups without the thumbs, my friend, your grip isn’t taxed much. The experts are right on that.
Therefore, you might be able to “focus on the lats more” and do more reps.
But much like with kipping – those reps are mostly useless.
You were given your thumb for a REASON.
That being to GRIP.
Try shaking someone’s hand without your thumb for one – well, many people DO shake hands with their fingers alone, but it’s only when you shake the other person’s hand with all five digits that the grip really comes into play – that “unnatural kung fu like grip” I’ve been so often told I have!
More than that though, while knocking out reps without the thumb, you run the risk of, like I did, nasty elbow pulls and stuff – because you’re unnaturally transferring more weight (or reps) than you can HANDLE onto joints that aren’t quite ready as yet.
In my case it wasn’t joints being ready, but FORM that was off – the minute you “take the grip off”, your form will dip.
You might not believe me, but it will – try it, and tell me.
Focusing on the grip throughout the movement is KEY. One of the main keys I keep talking about in “Pull-ups – from Dud to STUD within a matter of WEEKS!” . . .
The more you focus on grip, the more you’ll feel the lats as well if you do it right.
As opposed to “swanging your way up there”, or “kicking or kipping” your way up there…
And that, friend, is yet another reason you must ignore what the so called gurus say about pull-ups.
I’ve gone hoarse saying it, but I’ll go one more time (no pun, hehe).
USE the thumbs – period.
I dont care about reps, I dont care about bragging rights, I dont care about all that.
Just use your damn thumb when doing pull-ups.
That, my friends, is the “moral” you can glean from this one…
PS – Editing this a few hours later, when I used my own thumb – when I Really wrapped it around my fingers even more so on the thinner bar like it was a THICK one – bingo, away went the pain. Not fully as yet, but thats the trick, people dont get it.. And likely wont even after me writing/saying it. Oh well!