What It Really Means When You Can't Do A Pullup

Exercising is a great way to measure the body's strength and keep it healthy and in shape. Many fitness and health goals can be achieved with regular exercise, including losing weight, building muscles, and improving cardiovascular health (via Mayo Clinic).

While most people are able to participate in some form of exercise, there are certain moves that are more advanced — these include the pullup (via Healthline). A pullup is performed by grabbing a bar above your head, with your palms facing away from you, and using your arms to lift your body upward until your chin clears the pole before lowering back down. It's a similar but more difficult move than the chin-up, which is done with your palms facing toward you. A workout for the upper body, pullups focus on your biceps, shoulders, back muscles, and core. And not only do they strengthen these muscles, they can also help to improve grip strength and contribute to overall fitness.  

You probably aren't strong enough to do a pullup

While pull-ups are great exercise, many of us know the feeling of reaching up for the bar, pulling with all our might, and finding that our arms can barely lift our body an inch or two. But is it cause for concern if you can't do a pull-up?

The short answer is, no. As Men's Journal points out, pullups are a very difficult move, and you may need to build your upper body strength before you'll be able to perform one. One way to do this would be to do a modified version using a pullup machine at the gym (via Healthline). You can also target the same muscles by simply hanging from the bar, or by doing pullups with a buddy holding your legs or with a resistance band for support, according to Men's Journal. 

As with any exercise, be careful to avoid muscle strain and injury by warming up and cooling down before and after your training session, and by increasing the strenuousness of your workout gradually (via American Heart Association).