Dorian Yates ushered in the mass-monster era of bodybuilding with his 1992 Mr. Olympia victory. Even the Mr. O before him, Lee Haney, who was massive in his own right, knew that Dorian was a new breed of sheer mass and density.
What’s interesting is that Dorian was from the Mike Mentzer Heavy Duty training school—short, brutal workouts that often incorporated pre-exhaustion.
In other words, he only did a few sets per muscle group, but he went all out on every mega-heavy work set. And he often did the isolation exercise first to “pre-exhaust” the target muscle with a single-joint movement (specifics in a moment)…
Dorian, however, had an instinct for which exercises gave him the most results from a physiological standpoint. For example, check out his lats in the above pic. They are wide and super-thick.
His favorite lat moves were machine pullovers and undergrip rows. What, no pulldowns? Sometimes for variety. Here’s a pic of Mr. Heavy Duty Mike Mentzer training Dorian on Undergrip pulldowns, but that was rare…
Dorian always gravitated back to his #1 multi-joint lat-exercise choice, undergrip rows.
His lat attack was usually a Positions-of-Flexion mass program with a pre-ex kicker—machine pullovers first for isolated stretch/contracted work followed by bent-over undergrip rows with a barbell for compound midrange/contracted.
Dorian found that pulling resistance into your waist with an under, or curl, grip builds exceptional thickness AND width. And he felt them even better when he did them AFTER machine pullovers for pre-ex and to complete the Positions-of-Flexion full-range chain…
POF is an amazing mass-building system, with or without the pre-exhaustion protocol, because it attacks the 3 key hypertrophy triggers for optimal mass stimulation, according to Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D.:
1) Mechanical tension (with multi-joint, heavier training) = POF MIDRANGE: squats, bench presses, etc.
2) Metabolic stress (by blocking blood flow during sufficient tension time for cell swelling) = POF CONTRACTED: leg extensions, machine flyes, etc.
3) Muscle damage (via microtears in the fibers) = POF STRETCH: sissy squats, DB flyes, etc.
In Dorian’s case, it was often fused with pre-exhaustion, as prescribed by Mike Mentzer.
For more on Positions of Flexion, pre-exhaustion, and how Mike Mentzer built crazy mass—his own and Dorian’s—with Heavy Duty pre-ex (complete programs included)…
Get your copy of The Pre-Ex 3X Mass Workout
For the official Positions-of-Flexion muscle-building manual…
Get your copy of 3D Muscle Building
Till next time, train hard—and smart—for BIG results.
—Steve Holman and Jonathan Lawson
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