Pull-Up Virtuosity: Part 2

By Laurie Galassi

In CrossFit, Gymnastics/Tumbling, Reference, Videos

February 06, 2012

Video Article

CrossFit Santa Cruz’s Laurie Galassi, a gymnast and the fifth-place finisher at the 2011 NorCal Regional, shares her coaching tips for mastering the pull-up. In Part 2 of the series, she focuses on timing—the moment of weightlessness, to be specific.

“When I snap from arch to hollow, in the back of my swing I find this little weightless moment only if I come to an aggressive stop,” Galassi says. “If your rhythm is correct and if you’re tight, there is a moment.”

The feet should be in front, and you become weightless. From there, you can jump your hands off the bar.

“That’s the moment when you’re the lightest” and when you want to pull, she explains.

Galassi also advises to have as much of your knuckle on top of the bar to shorten the distance you have to pull.

To cycle through multiple pull-ups, remember: chin over, feet forward, reset, arch back, pull again, she says.

In terms of the butterfly pull-up, Galassi says the positions are no different than a kipping pull-up.

“It’s still an arch, hollow—that’s the foundation of your pull-up. And midline stability,” she says.

13min 8sec

Additional reading: Above the Bar: A Weekend Pull-Up Summit by Lisa Ilka Abrams, published Dec. 8, 2011.

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17 Comments on “Pull-Up Virtuosity: Part 2”


wrote …

Been waiting for part 2 since watching part 1. Excellent work Laurie! Been doing hip drive pullups, but after Tucker's video and now this one, I will experiment with the gymnastic kipping pullup.

Hey Laurie, how about a muscle up tutorial?

Looking forward to more videos from you!


wrote …

After watching part 1 last week and visualizing Laurie's teachings and movements over and over, I went to the gym the next day and the difference was instant. I've been doing pullups forever, but not as refined and tight as Laurie shows. Now I feel a better flow and economy of movement. With with part 2, especially the bit after 5:30 where she connects several pullups from a sideview, I can go back and refine my technique even more while also helping clients work on theirs.

Thanks a million, Laurie!


wrote …

Laurie ,
Your technical teaching is fanastic but your positive approach must work wonders .
I will be seeking out all your coaching videos .
Thanks for getting them out there and I can't wait to put those tips into practice


wrote …

i'm with jackson! laurie, you've got a great way of explaining movements. wish i had a pull up bar at home. will have to wait until tomorrow!



wrote …

great work,i have never been so sure of my pull ups,before watching this series.these are like benchmark cues.amazing teaching,thanks again laurie.


wrote …

Laurie Thanks so much for Posting this, you have finally given me butterfly pull ups, and I am so thankful, my fran time can finally go down in time :-), This content is amazing , I am so thankful for crossfit every day


wrote …

As a newbie who is struggling mightily on the bar, specifically with the kip, this couldn't have come at a better time. I'll be watching this on a loop for the next, well, I'm sure it will seem like forever. Thanks!


wrote …

Excellent Tutorial! I have been waiting for something like this for a few a while. I am totally going to try this out. I wish there was a "Add to Favorites" button on this thing.


wrote …



wrote …

Laurie I just watched your video before heading into the box. I got my first 4 kipping pullups (not in a row). Beyond excited. I never really understood how to pull before. Thank you.


wrote …

Of all the videos and instructors on the Journal, no one explains and cues better! Great job Laurie. Teaching is your speciality. Many instructors know the methods but getting people to understand them is an art and gift. Hope to see many more videos from you!


wrote …

Thank you Laurie!!!!! You rock. Got my first kipping pull-ups today thanks to your Video it finally clicked. Now to string them together, so shocked to do one easily. I didn't pay as much attention to the multiples segment - back to the video.

Any pointers on how to keep skin on your hands with the kip? I blew open my wedding band callus trying to teach the kip with one swing, one let go, and one pull up to my WOD buddies after I got it.


wrote …

Hand care is the key-- it's all about prevention. Keep those calluses down with a pumice stone, nail clippers, or (I hear, but haven't tried it) the PedEgg. Keep up the great work!


wrote …

Laurie - These videos have been just great. The idea of moving from one position to the next has been so key for me! I've gone from 5 pretty awkward kips in a row to 16 much and counting and my flow has greatly improved - so thank you!!!

I've shared the vids with a couple of friends at our box (Crossfit Talon in Franklin TN) and even made a couple of CJ subscribers out of the deal. BTW - The PedEgg works GREAT. My wife turned me on to it 4 months ago and it's way easier and cleaner than the other methods I've tried. She bought at a Books-A-Million store of all places, so I looked online and they have them!


Thanks for all you do for Crossfit! I'm looking forward to more videos.


wrote …

Nice teaching techniques however I noticed no difference between the butterfly you initially did (bicycle wheel as you called it) and the way you prefer to teach it (chest forward, feet back). When you demonstrated it the first time, your feet came back as they did when you emphasized to the group that the basic shape remained the same. The execution for both looked exactly the same to me. I guess if both movements were slowed down in slow motion, it would be more apparent. I guess my eyes just aren't seeing it.


wrote …

Finally the butterfly mechanics.... I have been struggling with this for weeks and expending a lot of unnecessary energy. Thanks for the tutorial!


wrote …

Great video, thanks so much! I think I may be ready or very close finally! On the butterfly, when "arching back" butt is not on, correct? Isn't that risking back injury?

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