With the pandemic restricting how we exercise, getting creative with an exercise routine closer to home might be the healthiest thing to do. If you love to work out with a group of friends, now is the best time to enjoy the intensity of body workouts on your own. One of the smartest ways to bring the gym experience home is by getting a workout bar. A humble pull-up can improve your upper body strength without requiring vast amounts of investment and space to use.
With so much variety of pull-up bars on the market, it is easy to get confused when purchasing decisions. To help narrow down your options, we’ve compiled the best pull-up bars and provided tips for smart buying.
If you’re tired of going to the gym to work on your body strength, consider investing in Garren Fitness Maximiza for home use. It is arguably the best-selling pull-up bar on the market today. Not only is it attractive, but also designed to provide you with full fitness training.
This workout bar comes with three sets of screw-in-door mounts (two massive duty sets and one medium-duty set). It also features 26″ to 39″ of adjustable width, making it incredibly convenient to install in most home doors.
The ends of this bar have extenders that twist out so that it fits about any door frame. Ideally, the two massive duty sets of mounting hardware can support up to 300 lbs of weight, while the medium-duty one can only support 150 lbs of weight.
The fact that Garren Fitness Maximiza Pull-Up Bar can be mounted anywhere in the door frames allows you to explore other exercises and even a full-body workout in your home gym. You can change up your activity by moving the bar down to the lower part of the doorway and securing your legs for sit-ups.
You can also use it as a bar for chin-ups, push-ups, and leg raises. While exercising, your palms are safe from fatigue and pain due to the comfortable, nonslip foam grips. With this convenient little feature, there’s no reason to believe that this bar doesn’t serve fitness enthusiasts like you well.
- Comfortable foam grips
- Three different mounting options to suit your needs
- Robust construction
- No locking mechanism for over-tightening
- Installation requires drilling into a door jam
Every frequent gym-goer has his fair share of gym bills. To cut down the expense, it is worth shifting into the best pull-up bars for home use. The Perfect Fitness Basic Pull-Up Bar is a budget-friendly upper body workout tool that can be a total game-changer.
This pull-up bar has standout features that you cannot turn a blind eye to. It is appropriate for all health and fitness levels- perhaps the best pull-up bar for kids on our list. Its patented swing arm adjusts to three models, ranging from beginner to advanced.
Along with pull-ups, kids can use this for lunges and other forms of light upper body workouts. Each model comes with a door frame guard, a two-way adjustable design, and padded handles. They are also compatible with door frames that are 27″ to 36″ wide.
With a user weight limit of 220 lbs, the Perfect Fitness Basic Pull-Up Bar is your best bet for a solid workout.
- Generous weight capacity
- Adjustable height, multi-usage
- Limited grip positions
One of the drawbacks of most doorway bars is the wear and tear they cause on the door. The good news is, that Iron Age offers something that does not disappoint. It is a popular choice, thanks to the plastic sleeves feature that protects any doorway from damage.
What’s more, the bar itself comes fully assembled and doesn’t need any screws, making it favorable to place in your doorframe.
The Iron Age’s open design allows multiple grip locations; hence, you can carry out different versions of a pull-up. It also comes with a center anchor that you can combine with various Iron Age accessories. This feature ensures that you can handle various exercises (e.g., sit-ups, push-ups, leg raises) and not just pull-ups!
It is also worth pointing out that it has one of the highest maximum weights, around 440 lbs. Sure, it’s hard to beat the Iron Age doorway pull-up bar.
- Multiple grip options, protects doorframe with pads
- Generous weight capacity
- No assembly or drilling required, solidly built
- Foam grips may wear from robust use
This pull-up bar for your home gym and free time is simple yet marvelous for its advantages.
What separates this bar from options of the same price is its locking technology. There is a unique, fast, and secure locking system that does not need an upfront installation. All you need to do is put the bar on the doorway, rotate it numerous times, and lock it in place.
Both ends of this exercise equipment have protective mats, ensuring a slight chance of damaging the door frame or any other surface it interacts with.
Overall, the Feierdun doorway pull-up bar is a quality solid since it is crafted from strong anti-rust stainless steel. It is also designed with safety in mind. As stainless steel can be slippery, two removable cotton pads are added to absorb sweat very well and improve your hand grips.
- Protects doorframe with mats
- Comfortable foam padding
- Secure locking system
- Smart design
- Foam grips may wear from robust use
Greenke has designed a portable pull-up bar for your doorway. Without using a screwdriver, you can set it up in just about any door frame, as the bar extends from 24″ to 36″ long. In a matter of minutes, you can break out the Greenke and get your workout started right away.
This bar’s “slip-in” design allows you to execute your workout session without stressing about doorway damages, thanks to the two foam padding for outer handles. Since it uses zero screws or hardware, you can expect it to rely on leverage in holding the mechanism sturdy.
If you do not want to drill holes or deal with screws, the Greenke Pull-Up Bar is the best option.
- Non-screw option
- Easy to assemble
- Fits most standard doorways
- Sturdy construction,
- Foam grips may wear from robust use
Types of Pull-Up Bar
Whether you are a gym enthusiast or a beginner in a workout, you need to know that pull-up bars come in four types. And the most common in this guide is the one that hooks into your door frame. This type of bar can easily be installed and removed for convenient storage. However, they might put significant pressure on your doorframe and cause damage.
An alternate type worth considering is a doorway pull-up bar. These bars are less likely to damage your doorframe because they extend to either side of your door.
For a little more permanent option, you can never go wrong with bars that screw into the wall. As long as you have a large space in your home intended for working out, you’ll be comfortable with these bars mounted on your wall at all times.
The last option is a free-standing tower. This bar offers an array of benefits- able to hold more weight than the doorframe type and allows other forms of exercise. The only downside is that some freestanding towers take up significant space in your home.
How to Choose the Best Pull-Up Bars
There are several factors to think about before selecting the pull-up bar that will best serve your needs. Read on to find out.
Without a doubt, one of the most important factors to consider when choosing fitness equipment like a pull-up bar is your ideal design. Some bars slip only into the doorframe without utilizing physical attachments. Some bars use wall mounts and locking screws for maximum security. Before you make any purchase, decide whether you prefer screwed-in pull bars or slip-in ones.
Another relevant feature is the bar structure. Larger bars provide more grips but add max weight. If you plan to mount your bar in a tight place, it is best to choose something with a simple design.
You may also want to take into consideration the bar’s clearance. The ones that lie close to the doorframe can take up so much space or hit your head. Similarly, particular pull-up bars are mounted higher than average. The Iron Age Pull-Up Bar with Smart Hook Technology is a superb extended bar option featured in this guide.
The grip design is also a key consideration when you shop for a pull-up bar. Most basic pull-up bars offer just a single horizontal bar. This single bar is an excellent choice for wide-grip pull-ups, close-grip pull-ups, and chin-ups. For hammer pull-up grips, some models utilize perpendicular bars to target the biceps better.
More advanced bars feature more grips. So, if you are glued to variety and want to target several muscle groups, switch up your grips regularly.
Assembly and Location
How easy the bar is to put together and where to place it are two further considerations. In general, the most straightforward pull-up bars to assemble are wall-mounted pull-up bars and doorway pull-up bars.
A doorway bar hooks simply into your doorframe. You can then use it just as quickly. On the other hand, a wall-mounted pull-up bar requires you to drill multiple holes during assembly. This can be in a brick or concrete wall but not on the drywall as it probably cannot support the bar weight and user weight.
Pull-up bars are designed differently. While some are mounted directly into walls, other options do not have to live permanently inside of doorframes. So, if you do not want to show off your wall-mounted pull-up bar to every visitor that walks into your home, consider whether you have a storage space in your home gym or not.
Wall padding is a crucial consideration because pull-ups eventually place significant stress on the doorframe. If the bar lacks proper padding, it may dig into the wood and leave scuffs or marks behind. Pull-up bars with proper padding are therefore safer bets in this area.
Mounting and Screws
As mentioned, particular pull-up bars require heavy-duty mounting screws for maximum safety. Before you purchase any pull-up bar, ensure whether or not you are up punching any holes in your wall.
If there are no traditional doorways in your home, you may need to drill some holes elsewhere for the bar. You may also need to purchase a pull-up extender such as the Garren Fitness Maximiza Pull-Up Bar.
Pull-up bars also cover a host of additional features that could help you decide the best option for your home workout.
Hand padding is just as important as wall padding. The palms should be well-protected during pull-ups to lower the chance of getting calluses or injuries.
The absence of a foam grip can harm the palms and fingers, particularly the more delicate knuckle joints. It can also damage the wrists, depending on the grip you use. In that case, your palms should essentially have enough gripping surface. You should also have the option to change the grip once in a while.
Like any fitness gear, a pull-up bar’s value is not always determined by spending the most money. While there are premium, well-built products that you can grab at around $150, you can still pick up a decent pull-up bar at $20 to $50.
Note: Pull-up bar training is not for the faint of heart. We highly recommend that you give your physician a call before incorporating pull-ups into your weekly routine.
Benefits of Pull-Up Bar Training
When you’re spending hours driving in a car or sitting for long periods, it should come as no surprise that you will have an increased spinal load. But with proper pull-up bar training, you can decompress that load. As pull-ups target your upper, middle, and lower back muscles, current back pains are alleviated. Similarly, the chances of future back pain and injury are reduced.
Installing a pull-up bar in your home is, therefore, a perfect way to remind yourself to not miss out on such an exercise that creates impressive, physique-changing results. With consistent pull-up bar training, you can expect the following benefits:
When we take our time to compare lat down to a chin-up, we can observe some essential differences. Our hands tend to move towards the body in lat pull-downs while our hands stay in the same spot in chin-ups. Lat pull downs are labeled open-chain movement since the hands are what move. On the contrary, chin-ups and pull-ups are closed-chain movements.
There are a lot of options in moving the body through closed-chain movements. We could perform a chin-up and end up with a head in our hands. Or we could end up with our heads behind our hands. We need to mix shoulders, back, pecs, biceps, and triceps for stabilization to complete this pattern. The result of this stabilization in using a broader range of muscles is that we are training more body muscles at the same and creating a lot of lean body mass.
Burns More Calories
If we are using more muscles, it is understood that we are also using more energy to do so. That makes this point easy to understand- more muscles used equals more calories burned per unit of movement and time. Even if doing pull-ups does not necessarily burn as many calories as doing some cardio, you can step up the intensity to burn more.
You can explore more reps/sets and take less time resting in between. Your metabolism eventually stays boosted even after doing pull-ups, thus contributing to fat loss and a lean body.
Related reading: Best Resistance Bands for Glutes and Legs 2021
Increases Grip Strength
Fitness enthusiasts know just how crucial grip strength is in lifting heavyweights. Luckily, pull-ups as an upper body workout best improve grip strength.
Builds Up Your Stamina
Although pull-ups are resistant-based exercises, they are still a winner for building up your stamina, especially when using a weighted vest.
Improves Mental Health
As with other exercises, pull-ups cause your brain to release endorphins, of which serotonin is the most essential. It is a happy chemical that keeps a sense of happiness and fights depression, anxiety, and mood swings. Your brain also releases another chemical called endocannabinoid, which makes you more relaxed and helps you feel happier.
During this pandemic, maintaining a fitness regimen that helps improve your mental health is absolutely a life-saver.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best pull-up bar for an apartment?
The best pull-up bar for an apartment passes the criteria used for evaluation in this guide- design, grip positions, assembly and location, wall padding, mounting and screws, additional features, and cost.
How much weight can pull-up bars hold?
The max weight that a pull-up bar can hold is around 500 lbs. Depending on the type, materials, and quality, the capacity can go higher or lower.
To prevent injury, it is safe to use a bar that can take 1.5 times your weight. Make sure that your doorframe is sturdy enough to handle the pressure or any significant weight.
How do you protect a door frame from a pull-up bar?
Pull-up bars do not damage a door frame as long as you take precautions. Invest in pull-up bars that prevent scuffing on the side of the frame. These bars feature wide pads designed to add a layer of cushion and not leave a mark.
Alternatively, you can cover the end pieces of your regular pull-up bars with non-abrasive material to prevent paint chipping and black scuffing. Simple ways to protect your end-pieces are using socks, thick slices of cardboard, or hand towels.