Forget fitness heavyweights such as The Rock, Jo Lindner or Mark Wahlberg, it seems we really should be paying more attention to a certain Turkish butcher for fitness inspiration. No sooner have we seen him perform some rather incredible leg workouts, including dumbbell lunges with 50kg dumbbells, barbell squats and a resistance band lower body workout that will leave your legs trembling, the salt sprinkling maestro has confirmed his alarming level of strength with a pull-up workout that has to be seen to be believed.
Taking to Instagram to show off his latest moves, Salt Bae can be seen performing several pull-up repetitions, using just one arm, all while holding a relatively loose chain. Pull-ups as a regular upper body exercise are already a prime test of strength, with your shoulders, upper back and arms all being brought into play. One-arm pull-ups are significantly harder, as one contributor to Bodybuilding.com says, “I’d heard stories—legends, really—about the [one-arm pull-up], but never believed it was truly possible.”
“The only time I’d ever witnessed someone do a pull-up with one hand was when the other one was wrapped around their wrist.”
Admittedly, this is exactly what Salt Bae can be seen doing, and it appears his years of flexing his biceps when sprinkling salt have given him the confidence to attempt such a move.
Check Out Salt Bae’s Incredible One Arm Pull Ups In The Video Below
One-arm pull-ups performed without gripping onto your wrist with the other hand are almost feared within the fitness community, although they’re an essential for anyone who wants to get their fingers stuck into rock climbing. But, to give Salt Bae some credit, he’s performing his one-arm pull-ups – complete with wrist holding – whilst hanging off a loose chain. Normally, pull-ups would be performed on a pull-up bar, or any other kind of bar or handle grip that is more solid and stable.
What’s more, he manages to perform five good repetitions of the exercise, even getting his chin above the chain. He may have completed more, but the video cuts off. However, further posted stories show him performing two-hand pull-ups, as well as some seriously impressive tricep dip style movements, holding himself above the chain (itself a test of strength) before lowering his body down slightly and pushing back up, blasting his triceps and core in the process.
If you’re inspired by Salt Bae’s impressive feats and want to give them a go for yourself, you should first make sure you’re competent performing regular two-arm pull-ups on a pull-up bar. If you’re unsure of the exact technique to use, Conor McGregor has previously provided some rather helpful advice. Keep working on these until you can perform 15 to 20 overhand grip pull-ups, without swinging your legs for momentum, and bringing your chin above the bar.
To progress onto using one arm, Bodybuilding.com adds you should then practice “flex hangs” using just one arm:
“Starting at the top position of a pull-up with your chin above the bar, brace your entire body and carefully remove one hand. I suggest practicing this move with an underhand grip, as doing so allows you to keep the bar near the center of your body, which will make for better leverage. Though the burden of supporting your entire body weight appears to rest solely on one arm, your chest, lats, and abdominals are also an important part of the equation.”
“Once you can hold the top position of a one-arm flex hang for several seconds, you can begin to work toward a controlled one-arm negative. The idea is to start from a one-arm flexed hang position, then carefully lower yourself into a dead hang with as little momentum as possible.”
From here, you can try copying Salt Bae’s method of gripping onto your wrist, as you will be able to gain some strength from your secondary arm. Then, you can work on lowering this hand down your arm towards your elbow, decreasing the amount of additional strength it provides in the process, before being able to remove it entirely.
As with any workout movement, warming up your body is vital, but it is imperative you warm up properly if you want to perform one-arm pull-ups, and also remember to not try and perform too many reps. A good starting point is simply being able to perform one rep effectively, and only attempt this once or twice a week. This movement puts incredible strain on your muscles and joints, so you don’t want to end up getting injured as soon as you start out.