How to Build Gymnastic Bars From PVC
Many fitness enthusiasts are increasingly using gymnastic bars for building upper body strength. Purchasing gymnastic bars can be expensive, but you can make them yourself at home with PVC pipes. Parallettes are parallel bars used for a variety of fitness training exercises, including push-ups, presses, L-sits and V-sits. Home-made parallettes are easy to make, economical and functional.
Prepare the 10-foot PVC pipe for cutting. You will be cutting two 24-inch sections, four 8-inch sections and eight 5-inch sections out of this PVC pipe for the gymnastic bar components. Use a tape measure and pencil to mark off each of the sections, starting with the two 24-inch sections.
Wrap electrical tape around the PVC pipe such that the edge of the tape meets with each of the pencil mark measurements you made. Use a handsaw and cut the pipe along the edge of the electric tape. Repeat the process until you have cut all sections as required in Step 1.
Lay out the glue, “T” and elbow joints, which wiill be used to attach each section of PVC pipe according to its functionality. The 24-inch sections will form the top parallel bars of your equipment. The four 8-inch sections will serve as legs and the eight 5-inch sections will become the base. The finished product will be a parallette that is 24 inches long and 8 inches high.
Apply primer and glue to the "T" and elbow joints. Attach one elbow joint to the top of each 8-inch section (leg). Attach one “T” joint to the bottom of each 8-inch section. Connect the top arms (24-inch sections) to the elbow joints. Apply glue and primer to the end caps and affix them to one end of each of the eight, 5-inch bases. Connect the open end of the base sections to the “T” joints.
Rub sandpaper over the arms of the bars as factory-made PVC tends to be slick, which can cause you to lose your grip, especially as your hands become sweaty while practicing. Sanding the PVC material will make it rough and provide you with a good gripping surface when gymnastic's chalk is used.
Hailing out of Pittsburgh, Pa., David Stewart has been writing articles since 2004, specializing in consumer-oriented pieces. He holds an associate degree in specialized technology from the Pittsburgh Technical Institute.