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If there’s anything close to the perfect exercise, it’s the pullup. It works the shoulders, arms, and back, and also increases stamina and flexibility. Vary your form, and you can strengthen your core and work other muscle groups that rarely see any action. And you can do them almost anywhere—no gym required. That’s why pullup bars are a home fitness essential.
What Should You Look For?
These days, home pullup bars are more than just a simple bar across a doorway. They offer variable handholds, adjustable placements, and versatility that will make them a key component to your home workouts. There are a few different types of pullup bars to choose from:
Types Of Home Pullup Bars
- Doorway: These extend the length of a standard door frame. They’re inexpensive and simple.
- Wall mounted: These bolt onto either a wall or ceiling and are generally the most stable kind of pullup bar. They also vary widely in cost. Inexpensive ones can be found for less than fifty bucks; sturdier options can cost several hundred.
- Free standing: Tall, freestanding devices with a stable (and usually somewhat large) footprint. They’re ideal for guys with garages or a dedicated home gym space.
- Outdoor: Similar to Tower, these are made to go outside and withstand the elements so you can get a pump in with the sun on your face
- Suspension Trainer: Using hooks and pulleys and suspension bands, you can hook these up anywhere to get a workout without needing to screw anything in
Pullup Accessories and Beginner Tips
If you are getting started on a pull-up routine, there are some accessories and tips you need to keep in mind. For one, you should probably get yourself some gloves or workout powder. That way you don’t do any real damage to your hands and your grip stays strong throughout, giving you the best workout and you’ll minimize your risk of slipping and hurting yourself.
You can also get suspension trainers or resistance bands to help you get started. These can help alleviate the full weight of your body while you do your workouts, thus letting you slowly work up to taking your full weight. Because you may not be ready to go full hog on a pull/chin-up workout with your whole weight. Work up to it with these in tow.
Just understanding your limits is key. Like with any workout, you don’t want to go too hard too fast. It will only end up hurting yourself and making it more likely that you’ll give up on the whole thing. So take it slow and build up over time.
There are a whole lot of tips to take into account that can all be found here. Keep these tips in mind so you can make sure your arms get as ripped and shredded as possible for your best look possible.
If you’re in the market for a pullup bar, our list below covers a variety of styles and price points. Grab one and get to work.
The Best Pull-up Bars for a Killer At-Home Workout
Best Overall: OneTwoFit Wall-Mounted Pullup Bar
For a full-body workout, this option from OneTwoFit is hard to beat. It’s made of heavy-duty steel, can support up to 440 pounds, and features padded back and arm cushions. Better yet, it can be installed either as a dip station or a pullup bar, and you can also add resistance straps or even a punching bag for additional cross-training.
PROS: Very sturdy when hooked up and allows you many different grips and workouts for the best upper body workout from home
CONS: Setting it up could be a problem for those not too inclined to put things togetherGet it!
Best Wall-Mounted: Titan Fitness Wall-Mounted Multi Pullup Bar
Featuring durable 12-gauge steel construction with a non-slip powder-coated finish, this wall-mounted multi-bar from Titan Fitness is built for a lifetime of tough workouts. You won’t get bored, either. Its eight bars allow for nearly unlimited grip choices, and they make it easy to attach gym rings, resistance straps, or suspension trainers like TRX.
PROS: A lot of different workouts are possible with all the grips that this bar delivers
CONS: You need a lot of space to have this bad boy set up anywhereGet it!
Best Pole Mounted Doorframe: Perfect Multi Gym Sport
This pullup bar offers a whole gym’s worth of workouts in just one simple device. Used as a pullup bar, it offers three different grip positions, but you can also throw it on the floor and use it for dips and incline pushups, too. Plus, rubber pads protect your walls, floors, and door trim from scratches while creating a lockdown grip no matter what move you’re doing.
PROS: A real simple design that can go in pretty much any doorway to give you easy access to pull/chin-ups
CONS: Isn’t as dynamic as other pull up barsGet it!
Best Ceiling-Mounted: Ultimate Body Press Ceiling Mount Pullup Bar
Don’t have the wall or door space for a pullup bar? This ceiling-mounted option is the way to go. Its four ergonomic grip positions and high-density foam make it extra comfortable to use, and the reversible risers can mount below either 16-inch or 24-inch ceiling joists for added installation flexibility.
PROS: A real sturdy pull up bar that comes in handy if you don’t have the door frame to handle a pull-up bar
CONS: Needs to be hooked up and it doesn’t have the same variety as many other barsGet it
Best Clamp Style For A Doorframe: Flybird Doorway Pullup Bar
No screws, no drilling, no problem. This bar can be extended from 28.3 inches to 36.2 inches to fit snugly in nearly any doorway. The 360-degree safety locks prevent unwanted rotation, the soft PVC mats on each end keep the bar from slipping, and the padded grip surface is perfect for a wide range of bodyweight exercises.
PROS: Most door frames can house this bar with its easy to use design and its durable frame
CONS: Possible grips for workouts are severely limitedGet it!
Best Freestanding: CAP Barbell Power Rack Exercise Stand
This rugged freestanding pullup bar is designed to meet military specifications for the Army Combat Fitness Test, so you know it’s ready for your home workout. It comes with an adjustable bar and a detachable step, and the 46 inches of space between the supports create plenty of room for all kinds of exercises (including the “Leg Tuck” event in the Army’s fitness test).
PROS: Strong and durable with a lot of workout options that can go indoors or out
CONS: Pretty pricey and takes up a lot of spaceGet it!
Best Multi-Use With A Squat Rack: Weider Power Tower
If you have space, a power tower offers maximum versatility. This highly-rated option comes with grips and pads for all kinds of bodyweight movements, including dips, incline pushups, and knee raises—a true full-body workout from just one piece of equipment.
PROS: More than just pull-ups and chin-ups are possible with this power tower that will let you get some squats in as well
CONS: Like the freestanding option, this is pricey and takes up a whole lot of spaceGet it!
Best For Multi-Grip Type: ProsourceFit Multi-Use Doorway Chin-Up Bar
Chinups are a great way to get those biceps to bulge just in time for summer. This bar offers multiple grip positions––ranging from close grip to hammer grip––that will target your ‘ceps from multiple angles. It takes just seconds to set up, so you can work up a quick pump any time.
PROS: Affordable option that can go in any doorway with a ton of different grip options for a more well-rounded workout
CONS: NoneGet it!
Best For A Small Apartment: Iron Gym Total Upper Body Workout Bar
A simple setup that’ll leave some extra cash in your pocket, this bar from Iron Gym does everything you need. It offers three foam grip positions, doesn’t require extra hardware or permanent installation, and it can even be used on the ground for wide-grip pushups. Save space without sacrificing results.
PROS: Save yourself a lot of space with this bar that can go in most doorframes
CONS: Not many other options for workouts with this option beyond simple pull/chin-upsGet it!
Best for Beginners: Intent Sports Pullup Assist Band System
If you need a little boost to get above the bar, this system from Intent Sports delivers. Attach it to any pullup bar and put your feet through the loop at the bottom to offset your body weight while doing pullups. You can adjust the boost (up to 130 pounds) simply by changing the length. It’s a great option to build muscle and confidence as you work up to unassisted pullups.
PROS: Limit the weight your putting on yourself with these bands to let you move up in weight over time while you get used to the new routine
CONS: Pretty useless once you move past the need for themGet it!
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