There is no better way to build upper body strength than bodyweight exercises.
For core strength, synergy between muscle groups, and a re-synchronization of the nervous system, bodyweight wins the day.
It’s also a fantastic approach when recovering from chronic illness, or fending off aging. Even the simplest bodyweight movements can improve and restore your body’s upper body strength — in nearly any situation.
The following products can be used in modified ways to accommodate the extremely feeble and highly advanced in age.
Among the most healing motions you can make is hanging — from something above you.
While branches and cliffs may have been nearby in times past, in the modern world — and as societies became more “civilized,” it’s become difficult to find something, anything, to hang from!
Enter the chin-up bar.
A solid, reliable bar to hang from is essential for the health of your spine, back, neck, and shoulders — even if you never attempt a pull-up.
In fact, many fitness-minded folks focus too much on the strength-building qualities of the pull-up/chin-up — and neglect the equally-restorative attributes of simple hanging.
TIP: Try to hang for at least 60 seconds a day.
- Improve your neck, back, spine, and shoulder musculoskeletal balance
- Correct muscle imbalances that lead to pain
- Elongate tissues in the entire upper body, leading to better blood flow, lymph drainage, and digestion
- Strengthen nearly every muscle in the upper body, with the exception of the triceps
It’s hard to overstate how important it is to hang — and to be able to, because you’ve got the right equipment.
Parallete bars are incredible for movement and building strength in the core and upper body.
Parallete bars are a small, portable, home-size replacement for real parrallel bars (which are 4 feet tall and 10+ feet long).
Always be careful, especially if trying to do inversions (feet up in the air).
- Super high quality
- Two color options
- Supports up to 400 lbs
- The feet/pads have a China-rubber smell that takes a while to off-gas
The only reason this product is not a 10/10 is that the rubber feet took a while to offgas.
Don’t let the word “olympic” fool you. Everybody can benefit from a few minutes a day with the rings.
There’s no better way to build upper body strength than with the rings. They are absolutely at the top of the list for developing upper body muscle, fitness, tone, and overall balance.
Even if you’re saying “no way, not me” — trust me, you can benefit from rings. Even a few minutes a day, even with extremely simple, easy motions.
You don’t even have to know how to use them. Just pulling and leaning into the rings synchronizes your nervous system, improves your core strength, and puts you in the mode of “play.” As you become stronger, you’ll find yourself making natural motions that build your strength.
- Durable, high quality
- Extremely secure
- Wooden rings are easier on hands
There is no better avenue to increase upper body strength than the Olympic rings.