Difference Between Close Grip vs Wide Grip Lat Pulldown

Lat_Pulldowns_Wide_Grip_or_Narrow_GripWhich to opt for? Lat pulldown machine with close grip or wide grip? This is perhaps one of the most common and important questions that trainers come across. Even you might also come up with such question. Now the question is does it really make a difference with change in grip? The answer to this is ‘yes’, it really make a difference.

When you are a part of lat pulldown exercise, you will certainly come across some catchy phrases like wide for wide, in for out, in for in and out for in. These phrases are uttered when your trainer asks you to hold the wide-bar on the lat pulldown machine. It is true that a few inches do make a difference. Check out the Top 3 Best Lat Pulldown Machines to know which suits you the best to perform the exercise.

3 Best Lat Pulldown Machines in Market

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Powerline PLM180X Lat Machine

Powerline PLM180X

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XMark XM-7618

XMark XM-7618

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 Body Solid Pro Clubline Lat Machine

Body Solid Pro Clubline Lat Machine

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Study on Close Grip vs Wide Grip Lat Pulldowns

As we all know by now that latissimus dorsi muscles mainly works to stimulate your body. Such exercise leads to major actions on arms. It works in extension (pulling down the arms from the horizontal point past the torso) and addiction (pulling your arms directly to your body sides). The fibers turn shorter and in the same way the muscles contract thereby creating the movement.

Must Read: 3 Best Wide Grip Lat Pulldown Machines
Must Read: 3 Best Close Grip Lat Pulldown Machines

Now, a question might arise from your end. If the muscles contract in the same fashion then why will a change in hand position on pull-ups and pull-downs make the difference? Research says that Department of Kinesiology at Pennsylvania State University came up to answer this query. They checked out the electromyographic action (EMG) of the lats, middle trapezius and biceps brachii under different hand positions. The result showed huge amount of muscular activities in each muscle groups. These videos will help you to understand difference in using wide grip and close grip lat pulldown:

All in Your Grip

To be honest, lat pull-down exercises are performed entirely based on individual’s experience and belief. In fact the anatomical variations present varies from one person to other. However, it performs same for everyone. Whichever movement you select, the difference will be the positioning of the wide-bar. Either it can be pulled in front or behind the head. Here lies the different, if the pull-down exercise is performed behind the tendons starts straining. These tendons lie in the subacromial space, which starts paining when the pulldown is performed at the back of the head. Even the glenohumeral joint can be effected if the exercise is repeatedly done.

A Short Yet Constructive Difference

Wide grip lat pulldowns on the chest has showed the maximum activity for the lats. While wide grip lat pulldowns behind the head/neck did not that amount of activity like the pulldown to chest. Even, when compared to closed grip or may be supinated grip, the wide grips pulldowns towards chest proved to be fruitful. Though a study concluded the width did not matter, what all mattered was the wrist position. In comparison to supinated grip, the pronated wrist irrespective of any width will mostly activating the lattisimus dorsi muscles. The best position for the lat pulldowns would be a comfy grip width with pronated wrists. Usually, it is heard that close grips strengthen muscles than wide grip though as mentioned earlier the tendons may experience unnecessary stress.

In this kind of exercise shoulder plays a very important role. So, if there is a pain existing there, movement will be the biggest disadvantage. In such cases neutral grip pull works great with neutral hand position.

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