Have you noticed that some of the hardest exercises to perform are bodyweight exercises? The reason for this is that with bodyweight exercises you cannot adjust the weight you are lifting, instead, you are forced to lift your own bodyweight and so the heavier you are, the harder it will be.
As with any exercise, the only way to get better at it is by practicing it over and over again. The question I get frequently is: how do you practice an exercise that you can barely do one or two reps?
There are a few ways to combat this and I’d like to share one solution that has really worked for me: performing ‘Cluster Sets’. If you are not familiar with cluster sets, read on.
Cluster sets are sets with intra-set rest periods allowing for more reps with heavier weight lifted. Whereby you would perform as many pull ups as you can followed by 30 seconds rest. Continue the exercise in this order while adding the number of reps till you have done total of 15 reps. Give yourself time, and as you get stronger and better at the exercise, you will be able to reach the designated number of reps in less time. This way if your ultimate goal is to do 15 reps of pull ups in one set but you can only do 1-3 pull ups at any given time then using the ‘cluster sets’ technique can help you to get there.
There are many other methods I didn’t delve into, such as: negative reps, assisted reps and modified versions of the exercises; and these can also help with the same goal. Most importantly- don’t give up!