While generally easier than the Push, the Pull station of the Police Physical Abilities Test (PAT) can be challenging. Below are a few of my favorite exercises to help you train the pull and take it from an obstacle to a time-saving station.
1. Suspended row
Usually Pulling Strength isn't the limiting factor at the Pull Station. More often it is a failure to integrate Pulling Strength with a stable base to pull from (in this case, a stiff trunk). I like to use suspended TRX or gymnastic rings rows to overcome this hurdle.
2. Loaded Carry
Shoulder stability. Grip strength. Core Integrity. Loaded Carries are one of the highest ROI exercises out there. They do a few things to train the pull: 1) increase your shoulder stability, which helps you keep the weight in control, 2) train your grip strength and endurance, 3) build a solid trunk and core to manage the forces applied to your body by the machine.
There are dozens of variations, but my favorite two are the standard Farmers Walk and the Suitcase Carry.
3. Lateral Lunges
One of the most underrated exercises out there. Don't throw this one out after you've passed your PAT. The reason that it is so valuable is because it builds strength in another plane of movement (side-to-side), rather than the conventional front-to-back like most exercises. We live in a 3-D world, so it is important to train that way.
4. Low Bear Holds and Crawls
One of my go-to exercises in my own training. The Low Bear trains so many things, I barely know where to start. Shoulder strength, rotational control, functional hip mobility, core stability, wrist resilience... Take your pick of reasons to put it into your regular routine, as long as it makes it in there.
5. Battle Rope Pulls
This one is directly applicable to the Pull station, building grip strength and endurance. Grind it out.
A couple more tips:
Here is a video done by my friend and colleague, Marc Locquiao of Redline Conditioning, (another great resource for POPAT/PARE training), outlining how to tackle the Pull station.
Thanks for reading.
Keep in mind: which exercises you do is less important than simply GETTING STARTED.
If you ever have any training questions, don't hesitate to hit me up: firstname.lastname@example.org