Pull-Ups Exercise Guide

Reviewed by Valerie Zeller Valerie Zeller Printable version

Pull-Ups is a strength exercise that works your lats.

Pull-Ups is a great simple move. When done correctly, it can effectively target your back.

It requires pull-up bar to do.

Discover more exercises for:
Back Lats
Discover complete workouts for:
Back Lats

How to do Pull-Ups


With palms facing away while gripping the bar, pull up until your arms form a 90 degree angle. Lower and repeat.

Illustrated Guide

Learn how to do pull-ups from this step-by-step illustrations:

Pull-Ups 1
Pull-Ups 2
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Pull-Ups 6
Pull-Ups 7
Pull-Ups 8

Muscles Worked

The muscles used for pull-ups may change slightly based on the your trained range of motion and technique, but in the most general case, the muscles used for pull-ups are:

Primary Muscles

  • Lats

Synergyst Muscles

  • Abs
  • Traps
  • Triceps
  • Deltoids
  • Side Deltoids

Frequently Asked Questions

What muscles does Pull-Ups work?
Pull-Ups works lats.
What is Pull-Ups good for?
Pull-Ups is beneficial for conditioning and to strengthen. It works the best for back, as it works lats. Pull-Up is a great strength exercise for men, men over 50, women and women over 50.
Is Pull-Up a good exercise?
Pull-Up is a popular strength exercise for lats.

Training, Progressions and Regressions

Interested in how to improve your Pull-Ups faster?

Pull-Ups Training and Progressions

Standards and Averages

Wonder how do others perform in Pull-Ups and how should you?

Pull-Ups Standards and Averages


Wonder how to work the same muscles with other exercises?

Pull-Ups Alternatives


Wonder how to make Pull-Ups either easier or more challenging?

Pull-Ups Variations

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Type(s) Strength, Compound
Muscles Worked Abdominals, Trapezius, Triceps Brachii, Deltoids, Latissimus Dorsi, Posterior Deltoids
Difficulty Level(s) Simple
Equipment Pull-Up Bar
Location At Gym

Muscles Worked

Target muscle(s) Lats
Synergyst muscle(s) Abs, Traps, Triceps, Deltoids, Side Deltoids

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