Functional Training Exercise #2
Pull-Up Bar Hang
After I wake up and do the Deep Breathing portion of my Functional Training Session, which I will cover in a later post, the next exercise of the day is more of a stretch and is for shoulder rehabilitation and decompression purposes. The shoulders play a very important role in our daily lives, from lifting a drink to your mouth to pressing a kettlebell in the gym. So the continued functionality and longevity of the shoulders should be a top concern for anyone, especially among athletes. Shoulder injuries are extremely common in many sports including Armwrestling and Powerlifting. Not only is this exercise great for your shoulders, but it is an excellent way to strengthen your grip! This is why I have incorporated this pull-up bar hang into my daily routine as part of my functional training.
30 Second Round - Position #1
I start out with a Neutral Grip on the pull-up bar. The first round of holds I do is a 30 second round. So I grip the pull-up bar in Neutral Grip position pictured above, take my feet off the ground and hang for 30 seconds. As I begin to hang I focus on elongating my spine and really feel the stretch in my arms and shoulders. My shoulders, elbows, back always pop a little right away as they start to decompress. I also make sure to focus on my breathing, taking deep breaths in and letting go. I do this until I hear my timer go off. Then I wait 3 minutes and move to the next position in the 30 second round.
30 Second Round - Position #2
The next position, after the 3 minute resting period, is the Wide Grip Position. For this position I grab ahold of the grips farthest out on the pull-up bar. I grab hold, pick my feet up of the ground and sink deep into the stretch. I still focus on my breathing and sinking deeper into the stretch until the 30 second timer goes off. Once again I wait for the 3 minute resting period and move on to the next position.
30 Second Round - Position #3
The last position may actually be the best for your shoulders, and is the first position I saw when looking into hanging for shoulder rehabilitation. This position is used in the book “Shoulder Pain? The Solution & Prevention, Fourth Edition, The Kauai Study” by John M. Kirsch, MD. Who is an orthopedic surgeon who was in practice for 33 years. He has performed clinical research on shoulder function, and written an affordable book designed for people to avoid surgery. I call this the Narrow Grip Position. For this position, I grab ahold of the grips in the center of the pull-up bar. Just like all the other positions, I grab hold, pick my feet up off the ground, and sink into the stretch. Focusing on breathing in deep, letting go, and sinking deeper into the stretch. I do this for the full 30 seconds, and this completes the 30 Second Round of the exercise. Now I go into my Inversion Boot Hang for the 3 minute round, wait for another 3 minute resting period and go right into the 60 Second Round of the Pull-Up Bar Hang. I will repeat all the positions but hang for 60 seconds instead of 30. The Apple Watch really comes in handy for these workouts, allowing me to set timers handsfree.