Q: I tried DP 4X (downward-progression 4X) on my big midrange exercise with a speed drop set after the last one. Wow, what an amazing feel and pump. I do behind-the-neck presses for delts. Can I use speed sets on those too if I’m careful?
A: You could—but you may end up needing rotator cuff surgery…
Any exercise that is even somewhat dangerous should not have you EVER moving fast, even if the weight is light. That also includes behind-the-neck pulldowns…
Now that doesn’t mean we’re against those exercises. In fact, we often use behind-the-neck pulldowns for a unique upper-back attack—midback plus lats. However, there are some rules we follow…
1) Never do behind-the-neck exercises first—in fact, we like them at the very end of the target-muscle routine.
2) Keep your reps no faster than a 2/3 tempo—lift in two seconds, lower in three—and, again, no speed sets.
3) Stop the bar at about ear level, no lower, or you could damage the shoulder capsule.
4) Do not fully lock your elbows—you’ll maintain target-muscle tension and avoid putting your elbows and/or shoulders in potential danger.
As we’ve mentioned in previous e-zines, speed sets, or X-celeration sets, can help you activate new and/or dormant growth fibers, according to researchers. But…
There’s no reason to risk joint damage or pain for new muscle gain.
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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