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How do pullup assist bands help?

There are two main reasons why assisted pull-up bands have become widely popular. The first is because they rapidly help build strength. Many people struggle to perform a single unassisted pullup while others find it difficult to increase their pull-up count. Pull-ups are challenging and require a number of muscle groups to work collaboratively in order to perform each rep. Each rep gets incrementally harder as your muscles fatigue. The major advantage that pull-up bands provide is that they enable you to utilize all of your energy deposits and perform additional reps as your muscles fatigue. The bands offset a portion of your bodyweight; the thicker the band the more assistance you get.

Many incremental strength gains take place as you get tired and are able to push through and force yourself to work a little harder then you did before. As you fatigue, you can add additional bands or substitute in thicker bands to continue cranking out additional reps and sets. This concept is known as 'progressive overload' and is key to making gradual strides. If you do the exact same workout each time you rarely see improvement.

The second reason is that pull-up assist bands help improve your form. It's too easy to cheat and use momentum to help get you up to the bar. Pullup bands give you the opportunity to slow down your reps, stay cognizant of your form, and keep your body straight as you ascend so you don't develop bad habits.

Why does it make sense to have resistance band sets instead of just one band?

As you get stronger you’ll need to lower the assistance to account for your new strength, and as you fatigue, you'll need more assistance. Having different size bands gives you a range of assistance levels that you can use to calibrate the amount of assistance needed. For example, the robust (purple) combined with a heavy (black) band gives you three different levels of assistance: heavy, robust and heavy+robust.

This resistance band combo allows you to do drop sets. For example, you can do your first set with just the heavy, then the next set with just the robust band until you can’t do any more reps and then add the heavy band to the robust to eke out a few more.

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