One of the most fundamental, badass movements you can do as an athletic person — and, spoiler alert, we’re ALL built to be athletic beasts — is undoubtedly the pull-up.
If you can rep out pull-ups, you’re already head and shoulders above the majority of the population. Achieve a muscle-up, and people will start asking you for your secrets.
And with summer coming up, nothing is better than getting a few sets and reps of pull-ups in while your outside.
This is where outdoor pull-up bars come into play.
The Best Outdoor Pull-up Bars
- Stamina 65-1460 Outdoor Fitness Power Tower
- Ultimate Body Press Outdoor Pull Up Bar
- PULL UP & DIP Portable Pull Up Dip Bar
- CAP Barbell Power Rack Exercise Stand
- Stamina Outdoor Fitness Multi-Station Gym
Versatile, sturdy, and cost-friendly, these pull-up bars will help you tame the greatest of bodyweight exercises and grant you the status of master.
In this article, we’ll go over what pull-up bars for the outdoors are, how to install them, what benefits you can get out of using them, and what to look for when on the prowl of purchasing your own.
Plus, we’ll show you the top outdoor pull-up bars that money can buy with in-depth analysis.
Let the fitness knowledge pull you in (or…up?).
What’s an Outdoor Pull-up Bar?
Glad you asked.
An outdoor pull-up bar is simply that: a sturdy bar that’s elevated off the ground, made to handle your bodyweight as you perform pull-ups. With it being an outdoor version, it’ll have materials and coatings that will improve the durability of the bar.
Plus, not only will you be able to progress on your pull-up prowess; you’ll also have access to countless other calisthenic movements.
The beauty of an outdoor pull-up bar — as you will read in detail in the benefits section below — is that you can set it up anywhere, especially if the pull-up bar has its own stability legs. (Which most of them have.)
In any case, outdoor pull-up bars are a one-stop shop for your workout needs at home… weather permitting, of course.
How to Install Outdoor Pull-up Bar
Each outdoor pull-up bar should come with its own set of instructions, even more so when they’re specific brands or have additional pieces. However, here is a general installation guide for the most basic of pull-up bars:
- Find your perfect pull-up bar spot: These bars are tough to migrate after you put ‘em in the ground. Therefore, it’s crucial you know exactly where you want your outdoor gym to be. Whether it’s your backyard or front, make sure it’s in a spot where you have full, unimpeded range of motion and it won’t become an eyesore within a week.
- Dig the holes: You’ll want to collect the tools necessary to dig a few holes for the foundation. Look at the directions for your specific pull-up bar to find the dimensions you need for spacing the holes. A post hole digger and a shovel should suffice. Make sure you dig the holes deep enough to keep the posts steady for the long term. (The guide for your bar should tell you.)
- Insert posts: Refill your holes with the posts. Make sure they’re level and not leaning. Then, fill the rest of the hole with the dirt you used OR, to be even more secure, pour in cement. This will be the sturdier option, and is fairly inexpensive for the benefits.
- Assemble pull-up bar per instructions: Each pull-up bar has different instructions, including even whether you put it in the dirt or not. Read the steps carefully and attach the bar as stated. Do not deviate from the intended setup — your body will thank you later.
As you can see, it’s pretty simple and straightforward to create your own personal calisthenics gym in the great outdoors. Might as well to your yard into an adult playground!
Benefits of Outdoor Pull-up Bars
There are plenty of advantages to owning your own set of outdoor pull-up bars, aside from the obvious (i.e., that you can do pull-ups on them).
Here are the numerous benefits of having — and using — an outdoor pull-up bar:
- You soak up some vitamin D: Working out outside is amazing for your body. Getting some sun on your skin boosts your vitamin D consumption and absorption. This will help you better utilize the nutrients you get in your food, as well as improve your immune system, maintain healthy bone structure, regulate insulin levels, support lung and cardiovascular function, and increase your overall mood. So yeah, vitamin D is vital to your well-being, and almost everyone in the U.S. is deficient in it. So get out to work out!
- Your excuses for not working out dwindle to one: Your gym is now in your backyard. Your only excuse at this point is the weather. So when summer comes around, you have no choice but to get your workout in. This is crucial to developing a workout habit if you’re having trouble doing so. Then, once the weather turns cold, you can swap for a gym membership…or, you can go iceman with it and train outside anyways. (Weather be damned, you’re like the U.S. Postal Service!)
- Pull-ups are badass and great for your fitness: By far one of the most fundamental and healthy movements available to man, the pull-up is your best friend. If you practice progressive overload on the pull-up (increasing the weight attached to your body or the difficulty of the exercise), your upper back and biceps will grow like gangbusters. Not only that, but this compound exercise will directly improve any and all rowing movements and will prove beneficial when you have to lift yourself up from a ledge. (You know…if you ever find yourself in such a situation.)
- These bars are super durable: As for why you want a bar for the outdoors, it’s one word: durability. Your personal outdoor pull-up bar will stand the test of time, giving you workout after workout for years to come. Your physique will completely transform with the same bar seeing you all the way through. This makes an outdoor pull-up bar really inexpensive in the long run, when you factor in the price over the period of time you’ll be using it.
- You can get a complete workout with one piece: Despite the name, you can do more than just pull-ups on this outdoor bar. Dips, lever holds, bodyweight rows, and other exercises are now on the table. Plus, if you get a bar that has multiple handholds and heights of bars — such as a multi-use bar or something resembling a Power Tower — you can do even more, creating entire workout routines with this one piece of equipment. How cool is that?
There are plenty of advantages to having your own outdoor pull-up bar.
If you’re wanting to ramp up your physique and become a calisthenics savant, the pull-up bar out in nature is where you need to start.
Considerations Before Buying
Now, just because outdoor pull-up bars are the best thing since sliced bread doesn’t mean you should go out and get three tree branches and set ‘em up with reckless abandon.
You want to look for certain qualities when purchasing your pull-up bar.
Here’s what you’ll want in your very own outdoor bar:
Maximum Weight Capacity
You want a bar that can handle your weight (and then some). In fact, you might as well look for one that doubles the weight of a burly man; shoot for at least a 400-pound weight capacity for your outdoor pull-up bar.
Length of Bar
This is important because you’ll want the choice of different hand widths. If you want to do wide pull-ups, you’ll need the space to do so.
If you want to hang from your hands and feet — because you’re an absolute goofball — you’ll need your bar to span almost the length of your whole body.
For length of bar, shoot for four feet or more. However, keep in mind that the longer your upper bar is, the less stable the bar itself might be. This will ultimately be dependent on the next thing you need to consider…
Type of Timber
This is where you have a lot of options.
Now, it doesn’t necessarily have to be timber. You can use metal rods instead of wooden dowels for the upper portion of the bar. As for the posts, you’ll want something sturdy, durable, and weather resistant.
Pressure-treated pine or white oak are solid choices, while teak and mahogany are more of the high-end selections.
There is also the route of full-metal. This is fine, so long as it’s treated with a resistant coating to keep it durable throughout seasonal changes.
Again, you might want multiple bar options to create full-body workouts with one piece of equipment. With that in mind, try and find outdoor bars that include various bars at different heights, angles, and setups.
Ones with dip bars, lower leg stabilizing bars, push-up bars, and multiple pull-up/chin-up handles would be your best bet for a versatile outdoor workout zone.
Top Outdoor Pull-up Bars Reviewed
1. Stamina 65-1460 Outdoor Fitness Power Tower
Next up is another standalone piece of workout equipment; this time, it’s the multifaceted Stamina 65-1460 Outdoor Fitness Power Tower.
You may have seen something similar in our reviews of Power Towers. It makes sense here as well because it checks off everything you’d want in an outdoor pull-up bar.
For one, it has a width of over four feet, with the ends of the pull-up bar flaring down for a more ergonomic fit.
For two, it has specially designed hardware and steel frame construction as well as weather resistance, corrosion resistance and UV protection, for one of the most durable pull-up bars on the market.
This is because of the multiple grips adorning the entire station.
It comes in green and makes you an aesthetic machine. Go with the Stamina 65-1460 Outdoor Fitness Power Tower and you won’t be sorry.
2. Ultimate Body Press Outdoor Pull Up Bar
First up on our list of the best outdoor pull-up bars is the one from Ultimate Body Press. This is only the bar part; you would have to purchase your own timber for the posts.
This is a four-foot, ramrod straight pull-up bar, made of galvanized steel with a powder coat finish.
The tubing is 1.25 inches in diameter, giving you a comfortable grip that won’t slip.
The bar is designed to be installed on 4×4, 4×6, or 6×6 posts, so make sure you get the correct lumber for the job. It also comes in other varieties, such as an 18-inch short spacer bar or a four-foot ergonomic curved bar.
This is also a fairly inexpensive choice, as each of these bars clock in at under $50.
The Ultimate Body Press Outdoor Pull Up Bar gets the work done. Period. If you need the most basic of bars for your outside gym, this is the one.
3. PULLUP & DIP Portable Pull Up Dip Bar
PULLUP & DIP provide this next outdoor pull-up bar, which also doubles as a dip bar, giving you some of the best variety in the home workout industry.
This thing can be set up wherever, both inside and outside, mounted on either a wall or a sturdy tree in your yard.
Plus, it can be situated in all sorts of angles and heights, allowing you to perform pull-ups, dips, leg raises, muscle-ups, and many other bodyweight exercises.
You can do as much as you want with this only this bar. Plus, you can mount and dismount this bar, making it extremely portable. Made of high quality powder-coated steel, along with stainless steel multi-handles.
By far the most multifaceted outdoor pull-up bar on this list, you can’t go wrong with the PULLUP & DIP Portable Pull Up Dip Bar.
4. CAP Barbell Power Rack Exercise Stand\
This outdoor pull-up bar is a standalone product that you can move around, making it a very unique bar. It’s the Power Rack Exercise Stand from CAP Barbell.
The cool aspect of this bar is that it can set the groundwork for even more workout equipment. You can transfer it in and out of your home, making it the ideal place to exercise year-round.
The 11- and 12-gauge steel tubing has been tested to be the standard in durability; plus, it can withstand 750 pounds at the pull-up bar.
It’s double-gusseted uprights provides exceptional stability and the durable powder coat finish and industrial zinc hardware gives you maintenance-free durability.
If you’re looking for a pull-up bar that can be built into something more, then this is the pull-up bar for you. Give the CAP Barbell Power Rack Exercise Stand a try.
5. Stamina Outdoor Fitness Multi-Station Gym
Finally, we have another Stamina bar setup make it onto this list. This time, it’s the Outdoor Fitness Multi-Station Gym, and it’s everything you’d want it to be.
Made of steel and to withstand the outside elements, it’s really similar to the 65-1460 Outdoor Fitness Power Tower. The difference is how it’s built.
This is more of a squat piece, including various bars like tricep dip and knee raise bars, incline push-up bars, regular push-up bars, and an inverted row bar.
And while you think you can’t do pull-ups on this thing…think again. You can elevate this multi-station gym on a platform or a table, giving you the room to use the top bars for pull-ups.
Also, if you’re newer to pull-ups, you can build up your strength with the inverted row bars. Once you can rep those out, you can graduate to full pull-ups (or at least negatives).
If you want something that’s more than just a pull-up bar, look no further than the Stamina Outdoor Fitness Multi-Station Gym. It’ll change your body and your life.
Congratulations — you’re now an expert on outdoor pull-up bars! (Your parents are very proud of you.)
Now, your next step is to go over those top pull-up bars again and find the one that fits your need and training style. Once you do, test it out!
Use it consistently for a few weeks and see whether your physique responds to the stimuli or not. (Spoiler alert: It will.)
Become a beast on the pull-up bar and master the entire jungle gym. Your body will be ready for beach season…and you can wow people in the process. Good luck!