The Horizontal Pull Up is a closed circuit calisthenic exercise for the upper-body.


The horizontal pull up focuses on developing strength of the back (rhomboids, latissimus dorsi, trapezius), shoulders (deltoids) and bicep musculature.

Most tennis players, especially girls, cannot perform regular pull ups because they have weak cores and don’t have enough upper body strength. Therefore, us the horizontal pull up to continuously improve your athletes’ strength until they can progress into regular pull ups.

If you are working with athletes that are out of shape then omit the use of the physio ball; just let them have their feet on the ground.

Horizontal Pull Up Description Summary


horizontal pull up

  1. Place hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart on the bar and feet on top of the physio ball
  2. Elbows are extended and hips are in neutral position.
  3. Retract scapulae (push shoulder blades together) first, then flex elbows to 90˚ and pull upper body closely towards barbell; maintain neutral spine and pelvis position.
  4. Slowly extend elbows and return to starting position.
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Targeted Musculature

  • Rhomboids
  • Latissimus dorsi
  • Trapezius
  • Biceps

Rhomboid muscles animation small

Latissimus dorsi muscle back


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