Exercise 101 : the lat pull down

Exercise 101 : the lat pull down

Building your back and shoulder muscles is something that needs some serious dedication, as we don’t tend to use these muscles when we’re carrying out our office jobs.

The Lat Pull Down helps you to work the broadest muscle in your back, the latissimus dorsi. Put in some hours at the gym and you’ll soon have back muscles to be proud of.

What is it?

You’ll need to use the Lat Pull-Down machine at your gym, which basically consists of a seat, and an overhead pulley which you pull down behind your head and the release upwards again.

Why should I use it?

If you’ve ever tried to do a pull up and wondered why you have absolutely no arm strength, then it’s probably due to you having weak back muscles.

The Lat Pull-Down is a great place to start to start building up those muscles to activate your posterior chain. Before you know it, you’ll even be trying out those pull ups with more success!

Who can do it?

Anyone, you can make this as hard or easy as you need to.

To make it harder for the expert, bring your hands closer together or make your arms into a wide V shape to make it more challenging.

How should I do it?

With good posture. Sit nice and tall, and make sure your hands are a nice even distance apart, somewhere above or slightly wider than your shoulders.

Make sure you select a weight that you can manage without straining yourself, and then you can gradually build up. Ensure the movement is smooth.


The Author

Laura Briggs

Laura is a fitness writer who loves running, strength training, Pilates and Yoga. When she's got time to herself you might find her knitting, or in the kitchen trying out an elaborate recipe - healthy of course!.


Trevor D.
29 September 2016

Trevor D.

I also like this machine as it can be set to whatever is needed. So it works if you are unfit or really tough, just adjust the weights. Look after your back and your back will look after you!

Emma C.
23 September 2016

Emma C.

This was my favourite move when I started going to the gym as a teenager!

craig t.
22 September 2016

craig t.

IThanks - have linked this to my sister who was saying she never needed to work her back!

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