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Whether you want to improve your strength, increase your flexibility, ease your back pain or merely enjoy a better level of health, working out with a freestanding pull-up bar could do the trick. This tool has long been the gold standard by which all other strength-building exercise equipment gets judged. If you do not have one in your home gym, you are missing out on an enormous number of benefits.

The beauty of the freestanding pull-up bar lies in its simplicity. Unlike other types of exercise equipment, which rely on complicated gears and levers to get the job done, a freestanding pull-up bar uses nothing more than your body weight. Yet, the simplicity of this tool does not diminish its effectiveness; if anything, the simple design enhances that effectiveness. By using your body weight to create resistance, the bar provides a powerful workout for muscle groups that would otherwise be hard to reach.

If you have a freestanding pull-up bar in your home gym or are thinking about adding one, you need to know how to use it correctly and safely. Here are a few basic exercises to help you get started.

Standard Pull-Ups

The most straightforward exercise is a simple pull-up. Grab the freestanding bar using a shoulder-width grip with your palms facing you; pull yourself up until your chin is level with the bar, then lower yourself until your arms are at full extension. When you first start, you may only be able to do a few pull-ups, but over time you can do additional sets.

Climber Pull-Up

This more advanced pull-up mimics the moves of a mountain climber, without exposing you to the danger or sudden drops. Start with a shoulder-width grip with your palms facing forward, then use the bar to pull your weight straight up. Move your weight to the left halfway through the pull-up, pointing your jaw toward your left side. Lower yourself, then repeat the exercise on the right.

Behind-the-Neck Pull-Up

Start this exercise by grasping the bar with a wide grip with your palms facing away from you. Slowly pull your shoulders up toward the bar until it touches the back of your neck, then gradually return to your starting position. The behind-the-neck pull-up is perfect for strengthening and stretching your lateral muscles.

Gironda Sternum Pull-Up

Start by holding the freestanding pull-up bar with your palms facing you. Curve your back as you slowly pull yourself up, then bring your head back and continue lifting until the bar touches your chest.

Negative Pull-Up

The reverse pull-up is good for basic strength training, and it can bring some variety to your workout routine. Start by standing on a sturdy chair, then grasp the freestanding pull-up bar using a total shoulder-width grip. Carefully step off the chair, then slowly bring yourself down until you have your arms extended completely. Do several repetitions of this exercise to achieve the maximum benefit.

Band-Assisted Pull-Up

This pull-up uses a protective band, and you begin by securing one end of the band around the center of freestanding pull-up bar and the other end around your wrist. Once the band is in place, slowly pull yourself up until your chin is level with the bar, then bring yourself down until your arms are extended and the protection band taut.

Having a freestanding pull-up bar in your home gym is a great way to improve your strength, build your muscles, boost your metabolism and get in shape. The exercises outlined above can help you get started, so you can get the most out of your pull-up bar and enjoy more effective workout sessions.

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Shoe Trends: How to Wear Riding Boots

If you’re ready to step out in style this fall, you’ll want one of the year’s hottest foot wear trends, the riding boot. Why are these boots such big news in the fashion world? Not only are they easy on they eyes, but they’re comfortable to boot. Confused about what to wear them with? Here’s how to wear those ultra comfortable and versatile riding boots.

Wear them with skinny pants.

The most basic, but still sleek and sexy way to wear riding boots is to slide them on over slim jeans in dark denim, or a pair of riding pants with a fall turtleneck or oxford shirt and one of the season’s other “must have” accessories, a thin belt. This look is appropriate for almost any casual outdoor function. Not only will you look chic and fashionable but your feet won’t feel the pinch. The flat heel on riding boots makes them one of the most comfy boots of all.

Wear them with dresses.

 Riding boots can add a whole new dimension to your favorite dress. While you can wear riding boots with a variety of dress types, keep the hem of the dress above the top of the boot, otherwise the look will be formless and unflattering. Try pairing riding boots with a shorter, wrap-around shirt dress for classic look. If you’re in great shape, wear riding boots with a shorter, form fitting knit dress and tights that match your boots. Try layering dresses by placing a sleeveless dress over a long sleeved dress, add a belt and a pair of riding boots for a super chic look. Layering is another key fall fashion trend.

Wear them with skirts

 Riding boots look chic and casual teamed with a skirt and matching tights. Generally shorter skirts look best with riding boots. Be sure you’re wearing tights that match your boots to avoid cutting the line of the outfit as well as giving the appearance of being shorter than you are. One fun idea is to wear riding boots with a saucy, pleated skirt and turtleneck. Hang an oversized handbag from your shoulder and you can welcome fall in style.

 When selecting riding boots choose a pair that fits snuggly against your leg. Riding boots are meant to be sleek and form fitting. They’re a forgiving look if your calves are somewhat less than perfect as they cover them in style. Don’t forget about wearing riding boots with leather and suede jackets for an ultra cool fall fashion look. If you can only choose a single pair of riding boots to add to your wardrobe, you can’t go wrong with dark brown or basic black. Pick up some matching tights and you have instant fall versatility. Have fun exploring the world in your riding boots this fall!


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