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Necessity of horizontal pulls (rows) if doing pull-ups

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  • PatrickD
    commented on 's reply
    Great, that's specific enough for me. Thanks!

  • Jordan Feigenbaum
    replied
    Originally posted by full_silver View Post
    Thanks for the comprehensive response. Would chest supported rows on a machine provide a similar stimulus compared to the barbell row in your opinion? I found that my anthropometry doesn't allow me to barbell row from the floor without rounding my lower back a bit and it's quite difficult to set up a seal row concoction which would be the ideal alternative.
    Yea I think so from a hypertrophy standpoint, but not from a strength standpoint.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jordan Feigenbaum
    replied
    What sort of risk profile does the chin/pull up have? In the absence of a lat pull down machine and if the goal is just general back hypertrophy, would DB rows have a better risk/reward tradeoff?
    Not sure how we're rating the risk profile here, e.g. what units we're talking about, but the biggest issues with high volume chins and pull ups tend to be overuse injuries in elbows and wrists due to the constraints of the apparatus being used to perform the exercise. I think context is important for making these decisions, but for general back jackitude I think rows > chins/pull ups.

    Leave a comment:


  • PatrickD
    commented on 's reply
    What sort of risk profile does the chin/pull up have? In the absence of a lat pull down machine and if the goal is just general back hypertrophy, would DB rows have a better risk/reward tradeoff?

  • full_silver
    replied
    Thanks for the comprehensive response. Would chest supported rows on a machine provide a similar stimulus compared to the barbell row in your opinion? I found that my anthropometry doesn't allow me to barbell row from the floor without rounding my lower back a bit and it's quite difficult to set up a seal row concoction which would be the ideal alternative.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jordan Feigenbaum
    replied
    There are no single exercises that are absolutely necessary insofar as you'll be unable to live a full and complete life without it.

    That said, I don't think that pull ups or chin ups (horizontal vs vertical pulling is kind of a useless descriptor that I have used in the past) are necessarily better than other options for strength or hypertrophy.

    For the volume thing, it is unlikely you can do as much volume with a similar amount of intensity (for motor unit recruitment) without generating a bunch of unwanted fatigue. This makes chins/pull ups a worse choice for hypertrophy compared to the lat pull down.

    For the strength thing, if we agree that strength is the production of force in a specific manner then we'd say that chin ups/pull ups improve strength for chin ups and pull ups, but probably not much barbell related outside of the novice (since everything works for them). In the context of a person wanting to get stronger as measured by barbell lifts, barbell rows would be a better choice though if we're talking about the deadlift in particular, we'd recommend more deadlifting.

    For general strength, I think pull ups and chin ups should be trained during the novice phase and then less importance be placed on them later on unless someone's sport requires proficiency at chins and pull ups. There is a risk/benefit profile to consider here and I think most folks have been socially conditioned to value the chin/pull up without actually considering it's inherent worth.

    I don't know you, your program, or your stats so hard to comment exactly what's appropriate for you.

    Leave a comment:


  • Necessity of horizontal pulls (rows) if doing pull-ups

    Are horizontal pulls/rows necessary if doing pull-ups? I feel that pull-ups hits everything for me - lats, middle back, upper back, and traps/rear delts. I don't seem to get additional benefits from chest supported rows or DB rows. I'm pretty light so I can do plenty of volume with pull-ups which I prefer over the lat pulldown. I haven't noticed any additional carryover from horizontal pulls to my deadlift either.
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