The face pull is an excellent exercise for targeting the posterior delts, and rotator cuff muscles, but more than that it also hits important and sometimes neglected parts of the back such as the rhomboids.
This exercise is a great way to prevent imbalances that can lead to shoulder pain, especially when lifting heavy with barbell movements such as deadlifts.
Attach a cable rope attachment handle to the high pulley of a cable machine.
Grasp the rope with your palms facing each other and pull it toward your face, keeping your elbows high and out to the sides.
Pause and squeeze your shoulder blades together, then slowly return to the starting position.
Repeat for 12-15 reps and 3 sets.
The goal of this exercise is not to move the weight as heavy as possible, but to focus on the squeeze of the upper back muscles and getting a good stretch at the fully extended position.
In comparison to the standard version of the seated cable machine row that utilizes a V-handle attachment, this uses a long bar, like that used to do wide grip pulldowns.
The advantage this version possesses over the narrower grip is that it allows you to use a little bit more weight and really stimulates growth in the upper back area.
Sit at a cable row station with your feet planted firmly on the footpad, knees slightly bent.
Bend forward at the waist and grasp the bar with an overhand grip, hands wider than shoulder-width.
Keeping your back straight, pull the bar towards your midsection, leading with your elbows.
Squeeze your shoulder blades together and hold for a second at the top of the movement, then slowly lower the bar back to the starting position.
Repeat for 8-10 reps and 3 sets.
The back responds well to low-moderate volume training, with moderate-heavy resistance.
Cable exercises make that possible since they maintain constant tension for proper form throughout sets.
If capable, add in free weight exercises with dumbbells or barbells such as deadlifts and rows as this helps recruit a larger amount of muscles for superior growth.
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