This exercise provided courtesy of Mike Clausen, founder and co-owner of DIAKADI Body training gym, voted best personal training gym in San Francisco by CitySearch in 2006.
This pull-down variation gives a good stretch to your back muscles, which must stay flexible to keep your spine in good alignment. Those who want to look good as well as feel good will want to know that narrow-grip lat pull-downs also build a nice triangular shape in your back that enhances your rear profile.
Lats (triangular muscles on either side of the back)
Seat yourself at a cable station beneath a narrow-grip attachment suspended from the cable. Stabilize yourself using the pads above the knees. Reach up and grip the handles so that the palms are facing each other, with your hands a little less than shoulder-width apart (see Photo 1).
- Pull the handles downward toward the chest, keeping your chin up. Keep your shoulders down throughout the movement. As you pull down, broaden your chest (see Photo 2 ).
- Bring the bar close to your chest, with your elbows at your sides. Pull through the pinky side of your hands to get the bicep muscles involved (see Photo 3).
- Slowly resist the upward motion of the handles, and let your back muscles stretch as you return to the starting position (see Photo 4 ).
- Repeat to exhaustion to complete a set. Do a total of four sets.