Q: My gym has an old Nautilus behind-the-neck torso machine for lat work. It feels pretty good to me, better than cable pull-ins because you don’t use biceps. What do you think of it? Should I use it or stick with cable pull-ins? [Read more…]
Q: I have trouble feeling my lats. I’ve tried the cable pull-in, pulldowns, and pullovers. Nothing. I don’t have access to a pullover machine. It looks like the full range would be best for me, as I’m sure the lack of isolation on the others is the problem. Any suggestions?
A: The machine pullover is a full-range move that many bodybuilders feel in their lats, even though the resistance curve is not great… [Read more…]
A few newsletters ago I mentioned the middle traps’ line of pull as it relates to fiber direction—which resulted in a new add-on move for elongation: overhead scapulae retractions. Overhead trap stretch may be a better description… [Read more…]
Q: I’ve seen new muscle after adding in stretch exercises. But your discussion on pulldowns was kind of confusing. You concluded that parallel grip with separate handles is best at about shoulder width, and close-grip V handle is okay, but an over grip can cause shoulder impingement. I don’t see much of a difference. Can you explain? [Read more…]
My daughter and future son-in-law reported back to me about my lat-stretch suggestion. I told them to try undergrip pulldowns after the ideal exercise…
Keeping the torso angled slightly back allows the arms to stay in front of the shoulders to avoid joint impingement—but there are some problems I forgot to warn them about… [Read more…]
I’ve mentioned one of the first controversial articles by Mr. America Doug Brignole we published in Iron Man many moons ago was his “Stop the Overhead Presses.”
He slammed the exercise as not great for shoulder development and most responsible for jamming the joint into painful submission over time. [Read more…]
Q: I noticed in some of your newsletters and in articles on your website that you guys do behind-the-neck presses and behind-the-neck pulldowns. Don’t you know those can trash your rotator cuffs?
A: You’re not the first to reprimand us for using those so-called dangerous old-school muscle moves. However, we think the injury potential of behind-the-neck pulldowns and behind-the-neck presses is overblown because it’s dependent on genetics, exercise form, and where you place them in your program.[Read more…]
Q: My gym always seems to be crowded—and people “camp out” on equipment. It’s hard to work in because I’m using the 4X method and rest only 30 seconds between sets (I love the Positions-of-Flexion version). Should I just lengthen my rest times to work in on a piece of equipment?
A: If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. In other words, you can “camp out” on equipment too—sometimes you can do your entire POF 4X bodypart routine in one spot. For example…[Read more…]