Buying a Kids Pull-Up Bar can be a great and playful way to introduce your kids to a healthy life. Obesity is at an all-time high amongst American children and the reason is poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle. If you’re a reasonably fit adult who is not obese, your life expectancy is likely to be higher than that of your kids. The reason? Kids sit around all day, grow up in that other reality (on their phones) and come to live in disregard of their own bodies. A Kids Pull-Up Bar, also called a Kids Gymnastic Bar is a fun and engaging way to keep your child active and fit. It is what it says it is, a Pull-Up Bar for kids. Ready to give your children the start in life they deserve?
Are Pull-Up Bars Okay for Kids?
Getting your kids to grow up leading an active life is the best start you can give them. Bodily exercise is of vital importance to children and directly contributes to their mental development as well. A Kids Pull-Up Bar can be a fun way to keep your children active and mobile. Unlike regular Pull-Up Bars, your kids will focus on developing their motor skills. Muscle building can come later after your child is well into his or her teenage years. By that time, they can probably decide for themselves what sports or fitness style they’d like to pursue.
Instead of Pull-Ups, your child will be learning to do rolls and summersaults mostly. This strengthens their muscles in all the right ways, exercises their bodies in a manner befitting their developmental stage and builds their stamina. The occasional Pull-Up here and there is fine and will most likely come from your child’s own volition.
Some kids, those who are approaching their puberty, might be comfortable doing a limited number of pull-ups on their Kids Pull-Up Bar. Chin-Ups, where your head comes all the way up and over the bar are best left for later.
Where Do You Buy a Kids Pull-Up Bar?
Unfortunately, anything store-bought and intended for kids is usually subpar. We say we want the best for our children but in reality, almost anything you can buy for children is of low-quality and simply can’t be trusted to get the job done. There is still this pervasive idea that since children aren’t adults, they’re not ready or even looking for the “real thing”. When we were boys, we ran around with plastic swords, shields and helmets after all, not the “real thing”.
In the previous case it was probably for the best that we stayed in the realm of make-believe but that attitude stretches out to practically anything made for kids. This includes practically anything you can buy for kids that has to do with sports; poor quality, poor capabilities. In this case though, you do want the real thing.
A better selection of Kids Pull-Up Bars can be found online, with professional vendors who specialize in Calisthenics equipment. Many of them cater to children as well, offering you the chance to buy a Kids Pull-Up Bar made with the same rigorous quality and safety standards as a “grown-ups Pull-Up Bar”.
What To Consider When Buying a Kids Pull-Up Bar
The first thing that you’re probably concerned about with a Kids Pull-Up Bar is safety. You want your child to be safe, it’s only natural. Of course, safety is an important if not the most important factor to take into consideration. But in some shape or form, your child will suspend themselves off the ground and there is a risk which goes with that. They could fall. But kids are resilient, their bones aren’t like ours yet and they weigh much less than us even relatively speaking. A fall, an impact, it doesn’t generate as much momentum as when an adult would fall from the same height. The point we’re trying to make is that being alive isn’t risk-free and coddling your child into a state of permanent inactivity will do more harm than good.
With good safety foremost in mind, you’re looking for the following things in a Kids Pull-Up Bar:
- Height: your child needs to be able to reach the Pull-Up Bar. But it also needs enough ground clearance so that rolls and summersaults can be made safely without bumping into the ground.
- Construction: preferably steel or other high-grade, durable materials. A lot of kid’s toys won’t stand up to rigorous use. They focus more on appealing visually to children and are often made of brightly colored plastic. These are unsafe for Calisthenics, hazardous for the safety of your child and should be shunned.
- Weight Capacity: this may be less of a concern than with adults. But children grow rapidly. A very limited weight capacity might not be enough three years or five years from now.
The 7 Best Kids Pull-Up Bars
We look back fondly to those days where kids could just be kids. Time spent playing, moving, chasing and just having fun. We’d kill to have something like this when we were young. The perfect birthday present, or just because. To help the parents of the world keep their children healthy, we’ve combined all of our expertise and made a selection of the best Kids Pull-Up Bars. Along with great Pull-Up Bars for kids, we’ll also mention a number of alternatives which give the same results.
#1 Gravity Fitness Portable Pull-Up Rack
The first on our list and one we can highly recommend as a Kids Pull-Up Bar, is the Gravity Fitness Portable Pull-Up Rack. Gravity Fitness has a history of delivering high-quality Calisthenics Equipment and this is no exception. The Portable Pull-Up Rack is meant to be used as a normal Pull-Up Bar; however, it is modular in design. You can adjust the height to a more child-friendly 47 inches. The Gravity Fitness is light but has a high maximum weight capacity of 242lbs. More than enough to support your child’s weight now and in the future. The open area beneath the top-bar allows for a gymnastic mat for additional safety.
The wide base, especially when combined with its “compact configuration” which your child will be using, means rock-firm stability when in use. When not in use, the Gravity Fitness can be easily disassembled and stored in its own carrying bar.
#2 BYBAG Foldable & Movable Kids Gymnastic Bar
Made with children in mind, the BYBAG Kids Gymnastic Bar is of solid construction and has a wide, solid base. Even more so than the Gravity Fitness, the BYBAG Kids Gymnastic Bar can be adjusted for height from 3ft to 5ft, growing along with the child or serving multiple children of different heights. The top bar has a weight capacity of 150lbs which should be sufficient for most children up to the age of 13. An adult can easily assemble the BYBAG in a matter of minutes. When not in use, folding it back up follows the same steps but in reverse. Its folded configuration greatly reduces its surface area.
BYBAG takes no chances where structural integrity is concerned. Once assembled, it stands firm and practically immovable. However, we think they’ve gone a little overboard with this. It lands on our second place just because the Gravity Fitness does not have any strongly protruding knobs, bolts and edges. The Gravity Fitness also has no crossbar along the floor directly underneath the top-bar, which may mitigate the added safety from a gym mat under the BYBAG.
#3 Gym1 Kids Doorway Pull-Up Bar
If you lack the room for a big contraption, a doorway Pull-Up Bar is what you’re looking for. The Gym1 Kids Pull-Up Bar is mounted to the frame of your door. The Gym1 is easily installed on virtually any standard door in the world. Once placed properly, it has a weight capacity of 300lbs so even a swing should not be a problem, owing to its tough tubular steel construction.
The Gym1 comes with three attachments; a swing, a ladder and two rings. It’s the rings we’re most interested in, since these allow your child to do rolls. The attachments are quick to attach and detach by using carabiner hooks. The Gym1 Kids Pull-Up Bar also has two horizontal grips and two perpendicular grips as well, which means you can use it as a regular Doorway Pull-Up Bar yourself when the kids aren’t using it.
#4 Ninja Warrior Obstacle Course
Possibly the most fun you can have as a kid is playing the floor is lava, set up an obstacle course and try to make it from point A to B without ever touching the floor. The Ninja Warrior Obstacle Course combines that game with a number of fun, kid-friendly exercises. If you have two trees or other sturdy poles, you can transform any yard or lawn into an adventure game.
Suspended from a 65ft slackline are up to 11 different obstacles your kid has to use. The aim of the game is of course to never touch the ground. You can change up the location of each obstacle for infinite replay value. You can basically sit back and watch them transform into active, healthy and outgoing individuals. Although not a Kids Pull-Up Bar, the exercises are similar to many Calisthenics techniques and the game serves as a fun, cursory introduction into Calisthenics.
#5 DreamGYM Doorway Trapeze and Rings for Kids
A two-in-one swing and swivel set, the DreamGYM is an active kid’s dream come true. At the heart of the DreamGYM is an extendable steel bar which can be fitted into practically any standard sized doorframe. The bar is suspended between two brackets which are permanently screwed into the sides of the doorframe. This allows for both a solid hold, capable of carrying up to 220lbs safely, as well as a quick way to remove the bar when it is not in use.
Stronger and older kids can use it as a straight up Pull-Up Bar, but the real attraction to get them moving is the swing and swivel attachment. These can be used either to straight up swing or use the bar as a trapeze to do rolls and summersaults. The rings too can be used for summersaults and similar techniques which will undoubtedly come natural to kids. Point of critique is the rope and knots used to keep the whole thing together. They are tight and strong, but adjusting the length would mean undoing them and then retying them.
#6 DreamGYM Doorway Trapeze, Rings and Swing Combo
For a small additional charge, the DreamGYM Doorway Trapeze and Rings can be combined with a proper swing set. This transforms the DreamGYM into an indoor swing for your kid. With its 220lbs weight capacity, permanent fixture design and assembly in Canada, it is the safest option for swings on our list (bar those intentionally meant for swinging exercise).
Swinging might not be the most physically demanding exercise, but it is movement nonetheless. It beats them sitting still on the couch and doing nothing and it can be a good start to a more active life, or to remain active when the weather outside changes.
#7 EXQ Home Kids Gymnastic Rings
A simpler and more affordable option is this EXQ Home Kids Gymnastic Rings. This package consists of only the straps and the rings and is a great option if you already have a bar in mind to attach them too. The heavy-duty nylon straps and solid steel buckle have a weight capacity of 200lbs. The grips themselves are made of high-grade PP plastic and come with either blue or yellow tape (to be applied by you). The EXQ Home Kids Gymnastic Rings are a quick and affordable solution, although we do not like the additional loops on top of each ring (thought to make the rings look like bear faces).
Frequently Asked Questions About Kids Pull-Up Bars
Here are a few Frequently Asked Questions we find surrounding Kids Pull-Up Bars and kids doing Pull-Ups.
Most 8-year-olds who are not obese and do not have any other deficiencies are capable of performing at least one full Pull-Up. They stand to gain very little from doing the exercise with strength in mind since they lack the testosterone for real muscle building. Instead, practicing motor skills is far more beneficial.
Most healthy 5-year-olds can do at least one Pull-Up to completion. For healthy development this is sufficient at that age and they do not have to build up muscle strength nor can they gain significant muscles absent of puberty. Playful exercises such as summersaults and trapeze work are far more beneficial.
The Pull-Up is a strength exercise and it is hard to say how many an individual child should be capable off. It is only during puberty that a child’s body will see significant strength gains over their childhood bodies. A healthy 7-year-old child, male or female and who is not obese can typically perform at least one full pull-up.
Children reach their full gross motor-skills at around age 4. Before that, the proportions of their bodies are too trunk and head centered (big head and torso with proportionally small limbs) to be able to do strength exercises like the Pull-Up. If a child cannot conduct the motions of a Pull-Up by age 4 (whether they are strong enough to complete the motion or not), seeking out a health professional is prudent.
Pull-Ups in the Calisthenics or body-building sense for building muscle mass and strength are not meant for kids. Children cannot build up any significant muscle mass since their testosterone levels are too low and most of their energy is put towards growth. Too much strength exercise can even cause problems with the child’s growth in the long run. Focusing on skill exercises, motor skills and stamina are far more important for kids. A Kids Pull-Up Bar can help with that.
Jari Dohmen has a B.A. in physiotherapy and has been involved with Calisthenics since 2013. Around the time Calisthenics began to proliferate in the Netherlands, he was already keenly interested in both the physiotherapeutic and general lifestyle benefits Calisthenics possesses. Jari started Calisthenics Worldwide (CWW) in 2016, after numerous internet searches for Calisthenics topics that sparked his interest yielded barely any information. Today, CWW is one of the largest and most widely recognized Calisthenics blogs in the world. Become part of the Calisthenics community by commenting on this article.