Softball Grip Pull-ups

Following a few recent discussions on the forum (here and here), I decided to make a pair of softball pull-up grips. A quick search of the web brought up one commercial option that retails for over $70. The DIY model will cost closer to $10.

To begin, I purchased two softballs for a total of $6, and then two eye bolts with a nut and washer for each ($4). The eye bolts are 6 inches long and 3/8″ thick. I drilled a hole through each ball and then screwed in the eye bolt. The drilled hole should be slightly smaller than the eye bolt to ensure a tight fit. I then added a washer and nut to the protruding end.

To attach the grips to the pull-up bar, I made two connectors with chain and a spring clip. Other attachments could certainly be used, but I already had these on hand.

Next, you can see how the connectors attach around the pull-up bar:

If you are looking to add some grip work to your pull-up routine, these grips are an inexpensive and effective option.

These grips can also be attached to rings for body rows.

For approximately $10 and ten minutes of your time, these grips make for a very easy do-it-yourself project.

More homemade equipment ideas can be found within the link below:

Homemade Equipment Archives


  1. Wow, what a great idea, I’m making a pair as soon as I can. Now I have something new to add to my to do list.

  2. The baseballs/softball grips are a great and cheap way to change up pull-ups and get some grip work too. Glad to be of some help for people

  3. i had a similar idea from watching a program called ninja warrior(if anyones seen it they will know what i mean)but ive never gotten round to you think id be able to do this with tennis balls?

  4. Yo Ross – how are you, brother? I’m sure you likely have this book already, but for a shit-ton of ideas similar to this softball grip (and most are all super-cheap, DIY stuff as well), check out John Brookfield’s “Mastery of Hand Strength”. It used to be advertised in “Ironman” magazine (the bodybuilding rag) some…jeez…15+ years ago, so the book is fairly old. But I wouldn’t be surprised if you couldn’t pick it up on Amazon or the like for <$15. It's an awesome read.

    Take care man.

  5. Great idea! I’m going to make some this weekend and try them out. Thanks for the great blogging.

    BTW..I found out about your site because someone referenced you as the “best training blog” on the web. I think I’m starting to agree. Cheers!:)

  6. Great idea!!
    I have anotgher affordable version of this. I found in the local mall, pet section, a bite toy for large dogs. It is solid rubber with a string attached. The string has a loop (for the pet owners hand) and can be used as is, if you have enough ceiling. If not, it can be shortened using the same knot as in your suspension trainer.

    Strength and honor!

  7. Oh forgot to mention. The above pet toy is 2,5″ diameter ball, and cost about 2.50 USD a piece.


  8. I was just thinking of making the same device for deadlifting attached weight plates for grip work. Read about it in “The Mastery of Hand Strength”

  9. This looks even better than a thick bar!

    Hey um… I don’t know if anyone is watching the most recent season of TUF (The Ultimate Fighter, Tito vs. Chuck a 2nd time)

    I was looking at the gym they had in the first episode and it looked like they had a pullup station and it was like these two huge black padded cyclinders, it was like some insane grip I think.

  10. i checked out the message boards and saw some guy made these out of baseballs. would the baseballs be easier to grip than the softballs? i assume so, but jsut double checking. i want to work my way into the harder stuff, not start off with it.

  11. Nice! Using just one ball with both hands would be good for developing strength in the Muay Thai clinch. Arms/hands would be in the same position as if you were holding onto the back of someones head and neck.

  12. We’ve made these using boating/fishing floats they come in various sizes and already have a hole through the centre ๐Ÿ™‚ couldn’t use bolts and chains though we just used rope

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