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Let’s face it –– pull-ups are really freaking hard for the majority of people. According to a study done by the Human Performance Laboratory, “Many individuals struggle with being able to complete one repetition (rep) as well as increasing the maximum number of reps they are able to complete.”
This is where the best pull-up assist bands come in. If you have the tools to allow you to both support and challenge yourself appropriately, you’ll be able to accurately monitor progress towards your goals—whatever they may be. Pull-up assist bands can allow the user to grow the upper body muscles associated with completing unassisted pull-ups in an achievable way.
Over 100 Resistance Bands Tested
Among our team of expert product reviewers and testers, there are certified personal trainers, CrossFit L-1 trainers, health coaches, and a USA Weightlifting Level 1 Coach. When we say we know fitness, we really mean it. Heck, we live it every single day. I’ve tested well over 100 resistance bands on the quest to find you the best pull-up assistance bands you can buy. Let’s dive right in.
8 Best Pull-up Assist Bands
- Best Pull-Up Assist Band Bundle: Living.Fit Resistance Bands
- Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for Travel: INTENT SPORTS Pull-up Assist Bands – Assistance and Resistance Bands for Pull-Up
- Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for Athletes: Gymreapers Resistance Pull-up Bands
- Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for Beginners: SYNTECSO 220-440Lbs Pull-up Assistance Bands
- Best Heavy-Duty Pull-Up Assist Bands: Rogue Monster Bands
- Best Pull-Up Assist Single Band: Vulcan Resistance Band Light Strength Band
- Best Latex Free Pull-Up Assist Bands: Fringe Sport Latex Free Strength Band
- Best Pull-up Assistance Bands for Full Body Workout: Tikaton Pull-up Assist Bands Set
Best Pull-Up Assist Band Bundle: Living.Fit Resistance Bands
Good for: Someone who wants an entire set of pull-up assist bands with various resistance levels.
Best Pull-up Assist Band Bundle
- Natural latex material
- Available in sets of 4 or 6 bands
- 6 different resistance levels from 10 lbs to 200 lbs
- Includes door anchor
- 41” length
Pros & Cons
- Bands for versatile uses
- Wide range of resistance levels
- Can save by purchasing a set
- Comes with door anchor
- Not a lot of reviews yet
- Bands can’t be bought in pairs
- No handles
Looking for a set of the best exercise bands for pull-up assistance versus a single one? Living.Fit resistance bands have you covered with up to six different options in one bundle (depending on your pick).
Whether you only need 10 pounds of resistance or 200, both are an option in this set. I think this is a good pick for people who either aren’t sure how much resistance they’ll need, or want to be able to progress their assisted pull-ups over time without purchasing new bands.
Plus, the Living.Fit resistance bands come with a lifetime warranty, so you can feel confident about the durability of the equipment you’re purchasing. This is useful, especially considering you’ll be paying upwards of $70 for a set of 6, which can be expensive for some people.
I personally wish the bands had the resistance amount clearly labeled for easy usage. It’s just inconvenient to have to look up the poundage on each one, especially because I know I won’t remember off the top of my head.
|Colors:||Red, Black, Purple, Green, Blue, Orange|
Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for Travel: INTENT SPORTS Pull-Up Assist Bands – Assistance and Resistance Bands for Pull-Up
Good for: Individuals who travel a lot but still want equipment to help them work on their pull-ups.
Best Pull-up Assist Bands for Travel
- One adjustable band
- Lifetime warranty
- Attaches almost anywhere
- Easy to use
Pros & Cons
- One adjustable band
- Comes with access to exercise videos for guidance
- Lifetime warranty
- Attaches almost anywhere
- Easy to use
- May not provide enough resistance for people over 200 pounds
- Plastic bearing reportedly wears quickly
- Adjusters are made of plastic
- Not suitable for those with latex allergies
The INTENT SPORTS Pull-up Assist Band can be easily packed up into the included carrying case and taken on vacation, work trips, or to your friend’s home gym down the street. The singular band can be adjusted to accommodate three different resistance levels–– low, medium, and high. Plus, for only $35, you get a lifetime warranty on this band. A pretty sweet deal if you ask me!
However, I’m not super crazy about the plastic adjusters on the side of the band. I tend to think plastic wears worse over time versus other materials, so I’m leery of the durability overall. Plus, although the resistance is adjustable, it maxes out at 120 pounds, which won’t be enough assistance for certain beginners.
|Resistance:||Up to 120 pounds|
Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for Athletes: Gymreapers Resistance Pull-Up Bands
Good for: Athletes who want assistance with pull-ups with a variety of resistance options.
Best Pull-up Assist Bands for Athletes
- Available for purchase as sets or individual bands
- 1-year warranty
- Variety of resistance options available
- Resistance not labeled on the band
- Made of latex; not suitable for someone with a latex allergy
Pros & Cons
- Natural latex
- Different color combination options
- Just two package options
- No handles or anchors
For athletes of various strength levels, the Gymreapers Resistance Pull-up Bands offer a wide variety of options for both pull-up assistance and accessory movements. Choose 25 pounds of resistance all the way up to a whopping 175 available. I’m a fan of these bands because you can purchase them both in sets or as singles depending on what you’re looking for. Plus, they also come complete with a one-year warranty.
However, I don’t think these bands are the best option if you’re short. Some smaller customers complained the Gymreapers bands were too long. I didn’t have this issue, as I’m around 5’9”, but I do think it is something to be aware of if you are on the shorter side. My only other real gripe with these bands is the lack of labeled resistance. I don’t understand why brands don’t clearly label each band and instead expect customers to remember the amount based on the color (it isn’t happening!).
|Colors Available:||Blue, Green, Purple, Black, Red|
Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for Beginners: SYNTECSO 220-440Lbs Pull-Up Assistance Bands
Good for: Beginners or heavy people who need help with pull-ups and want a secure option to support them.
Best Pull-up Assist Bands for Beginners
- 6 heavy-duty elastic straps able to support users up to 220 pounds.
- Up to 440 lbs of resistance
- Can be quickly attached and detached
Pros & Cons
- Up to 440 pounds of resistance
- Adjustable length
- Some users found them to be cumbersome
- Surface to place knees or feet is hard and uncomfortable to some
The SYNTECSO Pull-up Assistance Bands are a solid option for true beginners or heavier people due to the high resistance offered. You can choose amongst 220, 330, or 440 pounds of max resistance, which each differ slightly in price. These pull-up assist bands are unconventional in that they look like a swing at the bottom, with bungee-esque cords on either side attached to nylon straps. The cords can be added or subtracted based on your desired resistance.
Once again, people complained that this is simply not a good option for short people because the straps are too long. I, once again, can not tell you if this is true or not because it was not my experience as a taller person.
Something else to be aware of? The swing-like stand can pinch your feet if you’re not careful! If you remember standing on a swing as a kid, the rubber would sort of hot dog in, and scrunch your toes. The experience is quite similar on this pull-up assist device, so make sure to stand with your feet evenly spaced to avoid this unpleasantness.
|Dimensions:||12 x 8 x 6.5 inches|
Best Heavy-Duty Pull-Up Assist Bands: Rogue Monster Bands
Good for: Someone who needs durable bands that will stand the test of time.
Best Heavy-Duty Pull-up Assist Bands
- High-quality natural latex rubber
- Versatile use for any workout
- Color coded resistance/tension
- Compact and easily stored or transported
- Available in a wide range of tensions
Pros & Cons
- High-quality natural latex rubber
- Band tension from 15-200 lbs
- Bands can be used alone or with a barbell
- Less prone to splitting and breaking than cheaper latex
- Pricey due to natural latex rubber
- Not meant for anyone allergic to latex
I’ve extensively tested a ton of the best pull-up assisted bands, and the Rogue Monster Bands are the ones that have cemented their place in my personal fitness equipment repertoire. They’re insanely strong, and can be used for pull-ups, deadlifts, and tricep exercises. Rogue rarely disappoints with their products, and these are no exception. The Monster Bands can be purchased as individual bands or in one of two pull-up sets (depending on the resistance you’re looking for).
As much as I love the Monster bands because they’re durable and have multiple functions, they also have their pitfalls. When these bands arrive, they smell like a fresh set of tires, and it’s a smell that is not easily washed off of your hands. I’m also not wild about the cost, as they can be too expensive for some people–– $80 for three resistance bands is pricey.
Check out our full Rogue Monster Bands review.
|Material:||Natural Latex Rubber|
|Colors:||Orange, Red, Blue, Green, Black, Purple, Red, Silver|
Best Pull-Up Assist Single Band: Vulcan Resistance Band Light Strength Band
Good for: Someone who only wants one resistance band versus a set.
Best Pull-up Assist Single Band
- The Vulcan Strength Bands are made of a long-lasting 100% natural latex
- Strength Bands are all 41" in length and approx.
- Resistance increased based on width of the band
- Great for pull-ups or adding extra resistance to lifts
Pros & Cons
- Can be purchased as single bands versus a set
- Light band is just $25
- Durable without signs of wear and tear
- Level of resistance is not labeled on the band
- The heavier bands go out of stock frequently
- Not made in the USA
If you already have a good idea of the level of resistance you need, why not just buy a single band versus a set? The Vulcan Resistance Bands can be purchased individually with options from XX Light to Extra Heavy, so you can choose whatever works best for you. Plus, these rubber pull-up bands are durable and likely to last.
I do wish the resistance was explicitly labeled on the band, as having to look up the actual amount in pounds is very inconvenient. Perhaps I am alone in this struggle, but it is absolutely a pet peeve of mine.
For those of you who pride yourself on purchasing goods only made in the US, these Vulcan Bands are not, although a lot of the equipment produced by this brand is. However, they are still wonderful quality, regardless of where they are manufactured.
|Colors:||Red, Purple, Green, Blue, Black, Orange|
Best Latex Free Pull-Up Assist Bands: Fringe Sport Latex Free Strength Band
Good for: Someone with a latex allergy who still wants to use resistance bands.
Best Latex Free Pull-up Assist Bands
- No latex
- Made from medical-grade rubber
- 6 different resistance levels
- Purchased individually or in sets
Pros & Cons
- Made from latex-free, medical-grade rubber
- Six resistance levels for fine-tuning workouts
- Available to purchase a single bands or in various sets
- One year warranty and free shipping
- Fringe’s website offers movement recommendations for each band
- Expensive, but could be worth it if they are used frequently
- No carrying case provided
If you have a latex allergy, it’s likely at the top of your list to find resistance bands made without real rubber. Luckily, Fringe Sport has come in clutch with options to suit various resistance needs. I like that you’re able to purchase these bands both as a set and individually in pounds ranging from 20-175.
However, a set of six of these bands comes in at a whopping $182, which I understand is more expensive than most people would like to pay for resistance bands. Plus, when I’ve compared these head to head with the Rogue Monster Bands, they feel slightly less strong, even when talking about the same poundage. I’m not sure if it is due to the material, but I feel that it is worth noting.
|Material:||Biomedical-grade synthetic rubber|
|Color:||Red, Black, Purple, Green, Blue, Orange|
Best Pull-Up Assistance Bands for Full Body Workout: Tikaton Pull-Up Assist Bands Set
Good for: A fitness enthusiast that wants a versatile set of bands to use for a variety of exercises.
Best Pull-up Assistance Bands for Full Body Workout
- Constructed from multiple layers of high-quality latex
- Color-coded resistance levels
- Comes with door anchor, handles, and carabiners
Pros & Cons
- 5 levels of resistance
- Set includes door anchor, handles, instruction book, and big carabiner
- May not offer enough resistance for heavier users
- Made of rubber; not suitable for someone with a latex allergy
- Resistance level/weight is not labeled on the band
If you want a set of pull-up assist bands that can do more than what the name implies, check out the Tikaton Pull-up Assist Bands. Besides five different rubber resistance bands, you’ll also get a set of handles, a door anchor, and an instruction booklet full of exercise ideas.
Although I love the optionality of these bands, I’m not sure the heaviest option will support a beginner attempting to do assisted pull-ups. Plus, the company did not label the resistance on the bands themselves, which I’ve already said is the equivalent to nails on a chalkboard for me.
|Colors:||Black, Purple, Green, Red, Yellow|
Other Pull-Up Assist Bands We Tried and Researched
There are dozens upon dozens of pull-up assist bands to choose from. Here are a few others we tried or researched that didn’t quite make our best resistance bands list:
AmazonBasics Resistance and Pull-up Bands: These bands are a super budget option for those who want to spend very little cash. With such an inexpensive product, there are bound to be tradeoffs, and the durability of the AmazonBasics bands are questionable based on customer reviews.
REP Pull-Up Bands: At an average price point, the REP Pull-Up Bands are a pretty decent option. However, they are made of latex, which is worth noting if you are allergic.
Rubberbanditz Combo Band Set: With a lifetime warranty, the Rubberbanditz Combo Band Set may be a good option if you’re willing to fork over $120 for a set.
How We Picked and Tested the Pull-Up Assist Bands
I’ll be perfectly honest with you –– a lot of pull-up assist bands on the market will get the job done. However, some will function better than others, especially depending on specific considerations you may want or need to take. Here are the top things our expert product testers looked at when using these pull-up assist bands:
- Durability: Is there a warranty? How well will this hold up over time? Do we see signs of wear quickly?
- Price: How expensive is a single band versus a set? Is the price comparable to others on the market?
- Optionality: Can these be used for more than just pull-ups? What else can they be used for? Will they work for the majority of people?
- Materials used: Is latex the main material used? Do the bands smell strongly due to the material used?
- Overall value: Does the price match up with the product the customer will receive? Are these a good deal?
Benefits of Pull-Up Assist Bands
Not sure why you should purchase pull-up assist bands? Don’t just take it from me–– take it from a certified personal trainer:
“Pull-up assist bands are a great tool for beginners to learn how to do pull-ups, and for intermediate exercises to improve their pulling strength,” Amanda Capritto, GGR senior writer and certified personal trainer, explains. “These looped resistance bands allow people to move through the full range of motion with control and develop proper pull-up technique, as opposed to the common mistakes often seen in beginners: flailing, poor attempts at kipping, protracted (rounded) shoulder blades, and kicking the legs.”
Consider them training wheels for pull-ups that still serve a purpose even after you master the move. Pull-up assist bands are also great for people rehabbing an injury who don’t want to put excess strain on a muscle group.
How to Choose the Best Pull-Up Assist Bands for You
With so many different options on the market for pull-up assist bands, it can be confusing and frustrating to try and make a decision on your own. Here are the main things you should consider before choosing a set or singular band to add to your home gym repertoire:
Be realistic with yourself–– are you able to crank out 12 unassisted pull-ups before your body gives out or do you struggle to do one? If the former is true, all you probably need is a band or bands with light resistance. Consider checking out a light to medium resistance set to get a customizable experience. For those who struggle with completing one pull-up properly (no shame at all), consider picking up heavier resistance bands closer to 100 pounds.
For those who have a latex allergy, you’ll obviously want to avoid the majority of resistance bands as they are constructed out of pesky rubber. However, plenty of companies like Fringe Sport and TheraBand have thoughtfully made options that are latex-free, so be sure to look out for these specific bands.
Generally speaking, resistance bands are not cost-prohibitive, like say a Rogue Power Rack might be. However, if you’re only looking to spend something like $20, your options may be limited. This doesn’t mean you have to suffer on quality–– plenty of high-caliber bands are offered for sale as singles, which can make them more affordable than purchasing a set of five.
If you’ve never attempted a pull-up before or have little upper body strength, the general rule of thumb for the appropriate resistance would be 10 pounds under your body weight. This essentially means all you’re pulling is 10 pounds, because the band is compensating for the rest. Obviously, this is just a good place to start, and some may need more or less help as a beginner. Consider your bodyweight and adjust the resistance needed accordingly.
If you’re a big time traveler, finding high-quality, resistance bands that are portable or easy to travel with is a must. Some sets even come with a handy carry bag for easier stowability. Generally, most resistance bands should be unproblematic to travel with, unless you’re attempting to bring a Gorilla Bow on an American Airlines flight (spoiler, that won’t work out well as the thing looks like a bow and arrow).
If you’ve ever watched America’s Funniest Home Videos or any viral video that has a resistance band in it, you know this type of equipment can sometimes snap and result in a very painful ending, and in some cases cause serious injuries. Make sure you purchase a pull-up assist band that’s more of high-quality virgin rubber or similar material that can withstand prolonged use.
Pull-Up Assist Bands vs. Loop Resistance Bands
You might be asking yourself, “What the heck is the difference between loop and pull-up bands?” I’m glad you asked!
Pull-up assist bands are generally much longer than loop bands and offer quite a bit more resistance. If you’re looking for resistance bands that will help you activate your glutes, allow you to stretch a little deeper, and add some yoga into your routine, you might like loop bands better.
However, if you want a durable band that will allow you to rep out some pull-ups or to add additional challenge to your barbell deadlift, pull assist bands are your best option.
Still wondering what some of our top choices for loop resistance bands are? Check them out below:
Titan Fitness Loop Resistance Bands: With a strong 1-year warranty, the Titan Fitness Loop Resistance Bands are impressively durable. Plus, with included free shipping, it’s hard to go wrong.
Gritin Resistance Bands: Looking for a budget option? The Gritin Resistance Bands are under $10 on Amazon and are each labeled with the specific resistance amount.
Pull-Up Assist Bands FAQs
Do pull-up assist bands actually help?
Yes, pull-up assist bands can be a great tool to help people get stronger while adding some (you guessed it) assistance.
What pull-up assist band should I get?
This all depends on where you’re at with your unassisted pull-ups. If you can do one unassisted, you can likely go for a lighter resistance band, because you need less support. If you’re nowhere near getting a pull-up on your own (no shame at all) picking a heavy-duty band is your best bet. To pick the best pull-up bands, you’ll need to accurately assess your own strength.
Are banded pull-ups good?
Yes! Doing banded pull-ups is a great way to work on your strength as you make headway towards performing unassisted pull-ups. You’ll likely also see improvements in your strength training regime, since you’ll be getting stronger overall.
Do the different colors in a resistance band set mean anything?
Yes, they generally indicate a variety of resistance levels. For example, the black band might be the strongest in a set or the weakest. There is no universal code to know what each color means, unless you either look online or the company has properly labeled the rubber band.
What’s the difference between a chin-up and a pull-up?
Both appear on the surface to be similar motions, but involve a different grip, which in turn, targets different muscles.
“Chin-ups and pull-ups both engage many muscle groups throughout the body, including the back muscles, deltoids, biceps, triceps, pectorals, and core. While the primary movers are the same in both exercises, due to the difference in grip — specifically pronation (pull-ups) and supination (chin-ups) — the supporting muscles differ slightly,” explains CPT Amanda Capritto. “During chin-ups, your biceps, pecs, and anterior deltoids support the movement pattern, but during pull-ups, your latissimus dorsi, rhomboids, and posterior deltoids support the movement pattern.”
Both can usually be included in resistance training home workouts, provided you have a pull-up bar and complete a good warm up first.
How do I know which band I should use for assisted pull-ups?
If you’re someone who’s good at unassisted pull-ups, go for a lighter pull-up assist band that’s made with high-quality materials. If you’re a pull-up novice, go for a more heavy-duty band.
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