Ivan, age 7, training in Russia
Spending the majority of your life under 90 pounds means that you take some things for granted. Being able to do as many pull-ups as you want is one of those things. It has been recently brought to my attention that not everyone can do pull-ups. Apparently, they aren’t easy. Apparently, I am an ass for insinuating that they are. Apparently, I am belittling people who are trying their best.
I would have to agree. Because as Nelson Mandela once said: “You are not as good as me if I can do more pull-ups than you.”
Pretty sure he’s talking about burpees
Due to this shocking revelation I am going to offer some advice on how to accomplish your goal of doing your first pull-up. Just a word of encouragement before we start. The first pull-up you do is going to be the hardest to get. But once you do, and you will get it, you are going to feel like a goddamn champion, because you are, and then you can go around telling everyone you meet that you can do a pullup.
The first method that I would recommend would be to get a chair. Pull yourself to the top of the pull-up using your legs and arms. Move your feet off the chair. Lower yourself as slowly to the ground as you can. Repeat this for 3 sets of 10 reps.
Basically, your body is much stronger on the eccentric, or lowering portion of a motion, this way you can strengthen your muscles as they lengthen until you become strong enough to preform the concentric portion of the motion as well.
Here is a video of Joe Defranco explaining this in more detail: