Last week the NY Times published an irresponsible story.
Nothing new there, huh? I doubt any you of would be surprised to learn our media does a horrible job of producing honest, unbiased work. But this one, brought to my attention by CFW Instructor, Matt (and maybe linked on the CF main?) was dismissive of women and their capabilities. Worse, it basically gave all the unfit, lazy, and over weight women in the US an easy out / excuse for not being able to do something that they not only are capable of doing, but was required of all American high school girls only a few decades ago.[box_content]
Why Women Can’t Do Pull Ups
by Tara Parker-Pope
While the pull-up has been used by everyone from middle-school gym teachers to Marine drill instructors to measure fitness, the fact is that many fit people, particularly women, can’t do even one. To perform a pull-up, you place your hands on a raised bar using an overhand grip, arms fully extended and feet off the floor. (The same exercise, performed with an underhand grip, is often called a chin-up.) Using the muscles in your arms and back, you pull yourself up until your chin passes the bar. Then the body is lowered until the arms are straight, and the exercise is repeated. The Marines say a male recruit should be able to do at least 3 pull-ups or chin-ups, but women are not required to do them. In school, 14-year-old boys can earn the highest award on the government’s physical fitness test by doing 10 pull-ups or chin-ups: for 14-year-old girls, it’s 2.
Read entire article here.
Many responded in comments with examples of women doing pull ups. An article in the Smithsonian, titled Women Can’t Do Pull Ups? countered fairly well. Either way, the article and the study are absolutely off. If a women of sound health, devoid of injury, and without excess body wants to do a pull up, they can. Of course they need a program to get them there. Using assistant bands, like the ones in the photo on the left, and eccentric (negative) work are both essential tools in a good program.
Here is one…[box_content]
Sixteen Week Chin Up Program
by Andre Beniot
One of the biggest problems many personal trainers and strength coaches have is not being able to integrate training principles into program design. While it’s great to be able to discuss the pros and cons of linear periodization versus undulating periodization, often that doesn’t translate into how to improve an athlete’s squat or enable them to jump higher or run faster. Here I’ll share with you a 16-week program to improve chin-up performance. The program is divided into four phases, with each phase building upon the next. I realize that some gyms may not have all this equipment, so you will have to make compromises. Consider this an “optimal” program – what you may actually have to do falls into the category of “reality.”
Read entire article here.