T Nation

Face Pulls Not Working

i’ve read so many good things about face pulls. I’ve tried them for a few weeks now but cannot say that they are doing anything for me. what am I doing wrong. I’ve done them standing up and sitting down but never really feel a burn or anything in my rear delts. any advise? should i do low weights and high reps?

the kicker is to completely retract the scaps before you start the actual pull back!

[quote]Philly wrote:
i’ve read so many good things about face pulls. I’ve tried them for a few weeks now but cannot say that they are doing anything for me. what am I doing wrong. I’ve done them standing up and sitting down but never really feel a burn or anything in my rear delts. any advise? should i do low weights and high reps? [/quote]

Yeah you gotta kick the scaps together and then hold them there for the duration of the lift. I usually start with a weight i can do for 11-12 and do 3x9-10. The next day i do 10, 15, 20 second holds with that same weight. then I up the weight and use the new weight until i can get 3 sets of ten perfect reps, no hip extension.

Progress the weight and they will make your upper back stronger, shoulder stable and whatever else. You dont have to worry about burn if you are actively retracting the scapula.

-chris

I’ve seen people work them with back but I’ve always just thrown them in with shoulders. Any advantages/disadvantages of doing them with back?

I do them every day in my warm up. So id say it dosent matter.

-chris

Thanks Chris. I might start doing them more often for shoulder health. I usually do some cuban rotations during my warm up on chest day and shoulder day to help the shoulders and external rotators. I’m sure adding these in as well won’t hurt.

[quote]Philly wrote:
i’ve read so many good things about face pulls. I’ve tried them for a few weeks now but cannot say that they are doing anything for me. what am I doing wrong. I’ve done them standing up and sitting down but never really feel a burn or anything in my rear delts. any advise? should i do low weights and high reps? [/quote]

I generally recommend them something like the pic above, 3-4x10-15 with a 5-count hold at the peak position on each rep.

But if you’re doing them mainly to target the rear delts, I’d go for a wide, overhand grip (pronated, palms face the floor) and, again, hold each rep for a 3 to 5-count.

Keep the reps moderate-to-high, because going too low rep (and too heavy) will make it way too easy to cheat the movement and shift stress.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
Philly wrote:
i’ve read so many good things about face pulls. I’ve tried them for a few weeks now but cannot say that they are doing anything for me. what am I doing wrong. I’ve done them standing up and sitting down but never really feel a burn or anything in my rear delts. any advise? should i do low weights and high reps?

I generally recommend them something like the pic above, 3-4x10-15 with a 5-count hold at the peak position on each rep.

But if you’re doing them mainly to target the rear delts, I’d go for a wide, overhand grip (pronated, palms face the floor) and, again, hold each rep for a 3 to 5-count.

Keep the reps moderate-to-high, because going too low rep (and too heavy) will make it way too easy to cheat the movement and shift stress.[/quote]

The static holds and slow negatives are what really make this the master accessory lift.

Good to use two ropes for longer handles to get a better more consistent pull. If you can find it use a cable row station with two separate handles, gives it a way sharper focus between the scapula and in the supraspinasus area.

-chris

If it ain’t working drop it mate. Its a waste of time if its not doing it for YOU. Doesn’t matter what all the talking heads tell you. At the end of the day its all you. I’m on the same boat with pull-ups. Everyone says that doing them is the key to building an awesome back and that it will make me a better person, etc, etc, blah blah blah…Fool me once shame on you, fool…Well you get my drift.

[quote]Growing_Boy wrote:
If it ain’t working drop it mate. Its a waste of time if its not doing it for YOU. Doesn’t matter what all the talking heads tell you. At the end of the day its all you. I’m on the same boat with pull-ups. Everyone says that doing them is the key to building an awesome back and that it will make me a better person, etc, etc, blah blah blah…Fool me once shame on you, fool…Well you get my drift. [/quote]

But what are your measurement point for “working?”

The face pulls are a sholder health lift. The measurement of success is that your shoulders do not hurt when OH or bench pressing.

Are pull ups not making your back larger? are you not getting stronger on them?

-chris