Machine-assisted pull-up

Exercise details

  • Target muscle: Latissimus Dorsi
  • Synergists: Brachialis, Brachioradialis, Biceps Brachii, Teres Major, Teres Minor, Infraspinatus, Posterior Deltoid, Rhomboids, Middle and Lower Trapezius, Levator Scapulae, Pectoralis Minor
  • Mechanics: Compound
  • Force: Pull

Starting position

  1. Grasp the handles with a wider-than-shoulder-width pronated (overhand) grip.
  2. Kneel onto the knee pad and allow your bodyweight to weigh down the knee pad so that you hang with your arms and shoulders stretched.


  1. Exhale as you pull your body up until your chin rises over the bar.
  2. Hold for a count of two and squeeze your back muscles.
  3. Inhale as you lower your body until your arms and shoulders are fully stretched.
  4. Repeat.

Comments and tips

  • Pull with your elbows, not your biceps.
  • The pull-up is an important upper-body exercise, essential for building and strengthening your back and arms, and developing upper-body functional strength. Use the machine-assisted pull-up only if you can’t perform proper pull-ups. The point of the assisted pull-up machine is to help you to build enough strength to be able to do pull-ups unassisted. All you have to do is keep reducing the amount of assistance provided by the machine.
  • Some assisted pull-up machines are different from the one in the illustration in that instead of kneeling on a pad, you stand on a bar. See video.

Machine-assisted pull-up video



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