The good folks at Ethikon Fitness reached out to me and sent over one an Odysseus Bar. If you’re unfamiliar with the product, it’s a pull-up bar that fits in pretty much every rig set-up but… it spins. Very creative idea so I was all for trying it out.
Installing the bar was very simple. Literally the same way every other pull-up bar is installed, which is great, because I assumed it would be more difficult. I’m still a little traumatized over my experience with IKEA after my recent move so was a bit relieved that the spinning mechanism is already built in. When it arrived I opened the box and bam it was pretty much ready to go, just had to bolt it on.
There’s two options: normal bar (pins in), or spinning bar (pins out) which is awesome so you don’t always have to commit to the spinning bar. The pull-up bar itself feels great. It’s metal but it’s coated in a thick red paint which feels similar to a taped pull-up bar.
When you perform strict pull-ups the bar doesn’t spin too much, but at the top it rotates slightly which causes your forearms to get extra work in which can help with grip strength. I also noticed during strict pull-ups that you don’t get that natural swing effect after the first few reps. Maybe the bar spinning at the top counter-acts this some way. Less swinging and more grip work? Definitely a win in my book.
This product would be also be great for athletes that frequently perform kipping pull-ups. Once your weight is on the bar from you hanging, it doesn’t spin as much as you’d imagine so it doesn’t alter form too much. However, it allows your wrists to freely move with your body which is awesome so it doesn’t grind the hell out of your hand or give you any wrist discomfort. I wouldn’t recommend doing kipping pull-ups on here 100% of the time since it might mess with the specificity of performing the task on non-spinning bars, but that’s when you can just put the pin back in and be completely fine.
Overall, this is a solid product. The craftsmanship is evident which is what you would expect since the founder of Ethikon has a bazillion engineering degrees. The flexibility to have the bar spin or not spin is great for gym-owners who want to add a larger variety of equipment to their gym without losing any floor space. The bar itself feels great, adds a different stimulus to a great exercise, and will keep your hands ready to train all week. Get one at EthikonFitness.com and pull the pin!
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