3 variations of the STRAIGHT ARM PULL DOWN and my take on why you should incorporate all 3 at some point in your training.
1. From the left (mid range)
This variation I like especially as a pre activation for the lats, the serratus anterior and basically all of the muscles that keep your posture upright. This move will also benefit exercises such as the plank, and all pressing variations.
2. Top right (fully lengthened)
This version allows you to work the lats in full shoulder flexion (raise your arms above the head while keeping the ribs pulled down), the upper back muscles. I make sure when I stretch the back muscles such as the lats, and rear delts, I also contract my upper chest, trapezius, the rhomboids, the front and medial deltoids.
3. Bottom right (fully shortened)
By doubling up the rope, not only can I get a little more range than the first variation, but I can also get the lats fully shortened as I get to the bottom of the movement (where most if not all people are weak), while working full extension of the shoulder (which will also target both the long head of the triceps, and rear deltoids in their shortest positions). Finish all moves with a slight external rotation of the upper arm to bring in the trapezius, teres, lower and mid traps.
This will further improve posture and strength in the posterior chain in exercises such as the dead lift and it's variations.
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