Close-Grip Lat Pulldown: Form, Benefits & Variations



The close-grip lat pulldown is a again train that primarily trains the latissimus dorsi, or “lats.”

You carry out it on a lat pulldown machine utilizing a V-bar attachment, which permits for a slim hand place and impartial grip (palms dealing with one another). It’s extremely efficient for constructing again muscle and power, straightforward to be taught, and ideal for these with decrease again points.

On this skilled information, you’ll be taught correct close-grip lat pulldown type, the advantages of the close-grip lat pulldown, widespread errors to keep away from, the perfect variations and options to include into your exercise routine, and extra.

The way to Do the Shut-Grip Lat Pulldown

To carry out the close-grip lat pulldown, comply with these steps:

1. Arrange

Connect a V-bar to the lat pulldown machine pulley, and choose an applicable weight that permits you to keep correct type and range of motion all through the train.

Sit on the lat pulldown machine seat and alter the knee pad in order that it locks your decrease physique in place, then slide your thighs out, get up, and seize the V-bar with each palms.

Whereas retaining your grip on the bar and your arms straight, sit down, permitting your physique weight to drag the bar down with you. Nudge your thighs beneath the knee pads and plant your ft flat on the ground.

2. Pull

Sit together with your chest proud and barely arch your decrease again to assist have interaction your lats.

With out whipping your torso backward, pull the deal with towards your chest till it’s beneath your chin (or touches your chest if you wish to make the train more durable). As you pull the bar down, squeeze your shoulder blades collectively and pull them down.

An excellent “cue” is to think about pulling your elbows into the ground.

3. Ascend

Reverse the motion and return to the beginning place. This mirrors what you probably did throughout the pull.

Right here’s the way it ought to look whenever you put all of it collectively:

Advantages of the Shut-Grip Lat Pulldown

Let’s discover among the key benefits of the close-grip lat pulldown.

Full Again Coaching

The close-grip lat pulldown is a wonderful train for training virtually all of the muscle groups of the again, together with the lats, rhomboids, mid-traps, and rear deltoids.

Coaching these muscle teams concurrently is good for gaining balanced measurement and power on the again of your physique.

It additionally trains the biceps, shoulders, forearms, triceps, pecs, and abs to a lesser diploma. 

Straightforward to Study for Learners

When most lifters consider “vertical pulling” workout routines (workout routines that contain pulling one thing from above your head towards your physique), they consider pull ups and chin ups.

Whereas these are glorious again workout routines, they are often tough for beginners or those that are obese since they could not have the power to carry out a single rep.

The close-grip lat pulldown is a helpful workaround as a result of it really works related muscle groups however permits you to alter the load and steadily construct power.

Diminished Decrease Again Stress

The close-grip pulldown minimizes the pressure on the lower back, enhancing general consolation throughout the train.

Not like workout routines comparable to bent-over rows, which stress your backbone whereas bent over, the close-grip lat pulldown permits you to keep an upright posture, decreasing decrease again discomfort.

Improved Posture

Strengthening your again muscle groups with workout routines such because the close-grip pulldown helps to enhance posture by strengthening the muscle groups that hold your shoulders again, stopping extreme higher again rounding.

Frequent Errors to Keep away from in Shut Grip Lat Pulldown

Whereas the close-grip lat pulldown is an efficient train, it’s essential to concentrate on widespread errors that may hinder your progress and enhance the chance of injury. Listed here are some widespread errors to keep away from:

Utilizing Momentum

Producing momentum by “whipping” your higher physique backward as you pull the load lowers again engagement and shifts the emphasis onto different muscle teams, which is a foul factor if growing your again is your prime precedence.

Keep away from this by retaining your again stationary, sustaining upper-body tightness, and core stability all through the vary of movement.

Pulling Too Low

Bringing the bar under your higher chest can pressure your shoulder joint and scale back the train’s effectiveness. Keep on with the right vary of movement, decreasing the bar to beneath your chin or in order that it touches your higher pecs. This engages your again muscle groups correctly and prevents shoulder discomfort.

Pulling with Your Biceps

It’s straightforward to rely an excessive amount of in your biceps as a substitute of your again when performing the close-grip pulldown. Nonetheless, doing so robs you of muscle and power acquire within the goal muscle groups.

To attenuate biceps engagement, think about pulling your elbows into the ground. This maximizes how a lot your lats contribute whereas lessening biceps involvement. 

The Finest Shut-Grip Lat Pulldown Variations and Alternate options

Whereas the close-grip lat pulldown is an efficient train, incorporating variations and options can add selection to your exercise routine and goal the muscle groups of the again in numerous methods. Listed here are among the finest close-grip lat pulldown variations and options:

1. One-Arm Lat Pulldown

One-Arm Lat Pulldown

The one-arm lat pulldown is a good variation that focuses on one aspect of the physique at a time, serving to you discover and repair muscle imbalances

To carry out the one-arm lat pulldown, connect a D-handle to the highest pulley of the lat pulldown machine. Seize the deal with with one hand and pull it towards your chest, mimicking the movement of the normal lat pulldown.

This train additionally engages the core muscle groups, significantly the obliques, as they assist stabilize the physique throughout the motion.

2. Impartial-Grip Pullups

Neutral-Grip PullupsNeutral-Grip Pullups

Impartial-grip pullups are a superb different to the close-grip lat pulldown, concentrating on the identical muscle groups however with out the necessity for a lat pulldown machine. You may carry out this variation utilizing a set of parallel bars or a neutral-grip pull-up bar. 

3. Lat Pulldown


The common lat pulldown trains your again equally to the close-grip lat pulldown, although it might be barely higher at coaching the lats and fewer efficient at concentrating on the rear delts.

4. Cable Row

Seated Cable Row before afterSeated Cable Row before after

The cable row is a wonderful different to the shut grip lat pulldown that includes utilizing a impartial grip to drag a weight horizontally towards your midsection whereas retaining your elbows near your sides. Equally to the close-grip pulldown, the cable row trains your mid again to a excessive diploma, particularly your lats.

5. One-Arm Dumbbell Row

One-Arm Dumbbell Row before afterOne-Arm Dumbbell Row before after

The one-arm dumbbell row is one other nice different to the close-grip lat pulldown, coaching all of the muscle groups of the center again, significantly the lats, traps, and rhomboids. To carry out the train, maintain a dumbbell in a single hand, place the alternative knee and hand on a bench for help, and row the dumbbell to your aspect whereas retaining your again straight. 

A big benefit of the one-arm dumbbell row is that it requires little tools, making it a helpful different for many who don’t have entry to a lat pulldown machine.

Muscle groups Labored By the Shut-Grip Lat Pulldown

Right here’s a diagram of the primary muscle groups labored by the shut grip lat pulldown:

Lat Pulldown Muscles Worked Lat Pulldown Muscles Worked

Units and Reps for the Shut-Grip Lat Pulldown

The close-grip pulldown includes a number of main muscle teams concurrently, so you need to use heavier hundreds with out compromising security, offered you utilize good type. 

Doing 3 units of 4-to-6 or 6-to-8 reps works nicely for many males, whereas 3 units of 6-to-8 or 8-to-10 reps is extra becoming for ladies.

FAQ #1: What’s the distinction between vast and close-grip lat pull downs?

The wide-grip pulldown is somewhat higher at coaching your lats, and the close-grip pulldown is marginally higher at coaching your rear delts. The close-grip variation additionally trains the pecs and triceps greater than the vast grip model, although neither is a “chest” or “triceps” train.

Nonetheless, these variations are so minor that they probably have little impact on long-term muscle development.

FAQ #2: Which grip is finest for the lat pulldown?

There’s no such factor because the “finest” grip for the lat pulldown. The most effective resolution for most individuals is to periodically experiment with grip widths and orientations.

Doing so likely causes extra balanced and full development than utilizing only one or two grips, and it might provide help to keep away from repetitive pressure accidents, which might happen whenever you do the identical train for lengthy durations. 

FAQ #3: Will lat pull-downs assist with my pull-ups?

Sure, lat pulldown workout routines will help enhance your pull-up power. 

Lat pulldowns goal the identical muscle groups utilized in pull-ups, such because the lats and biceps. By strengthening these muscle groups by means of lat pulldown workout routines, you may improve your capacity to carry out pull-ups.

That stated, power is “particular.” In different phrases, the easiest way to get higher at pull-ups is to do pull-ups.


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