Get a (Better) Grip

Pull-up variations that strengthen the whole body—including your grip strength.

As pull-ups find their place in more and moe athletes’ routines, the focus on building a stronger grip grows. But simple twists on the classic move can yield bigger results. These creative pull-up variations, designed by Lucas Varella, a Tier X coach at Equinox  in Century City, California, work overtime to strengthen your grip, biceps, back, and abs all at the same time. “The only catch is that in order to see results (and avoid injury), you have to do them correctly: Keep your chest open, your shoulders rolled back, your grip strong, and your body still (i.e., don’t swing or use momentum to get your chin up to the bar),” he notes.

First, perform one traditional pull-up using good form. Work your way up to 3 sets of 5 reps. Once you can complete those without faltering, you’re ready to move on to these variations.