T Nation

Lack Of Mind-Muscle Connection on Pulling Exercises


I’m doing a PPL routine. I’m working on getting stronger for the rugby season (starting in September).
The set up in simple – big strength move which getting heavier and heavier. Then lighter work for high reps to build a bit of size.
However I still feel like I’m not getting the most from my pull work outs. I don’t feel like the muscles are getting the work out they do on the push or legs days.

My last pull day was:
Trap bar dead lift 145kg (320lb) 3 sets of 5
Pull ups 3,2,2 (this sucks well aware).
Chest supported rows, 2 set of 15 – with 15 kg (33lb). 1 set of 10 with 17.5kg (38lb).
Curls 2 sets of 12 with 20kg (45lb)

After this I left tired and I was forcing some of the reps. But nothing like my leg or push days. It’s like I have on mind muscle connection at all. Not even the curls. Any ideas?

Also (if I can) – I’m following a progression methods I found on T-Nation for my main lifts (they are Matt/Jane Kroc programs) – do recommend chasing PR’s on secondary lifts?
For example on my bench day – I then do pressing. But I’m not chasing PR’s on my press. I just make sure I’ve not gone back wards from last week.
Or should I aim for some sort of progression on every lift, every session?

Thanks in advance.

LOL weird timing. I just sent in an article today for improving mind to muscle connection.

Trap bar deadlifts are not a pull movement for “back” to me. They are a lower body movement and more of an integrated one than one that is overly biasing one area but if one area was being biased, it would be the quads (all depending on how it’s being performed of course).

I don’t like pull ups for back or lat work at all. I can do more with various pulldowns for lats and back than people can do with chin variations.

I would start using some isometric holds on things like lat pulldowns (supinated grip for lats) and think about pulling with your elbows into your front pockets, and also doing things like wide grip pulldowns for your upperback where you think about bending the bar in half while also thinking about touching your elbows together at the bottom. These things tend to help with shortening the right muscles and creating better mind to muscle connection.

I had though that about the trap bar. Whilst it’s a great tool since moving over I’ve noticed a little less on my back.

Ill give these a go.

Thank you.

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Hey coach,
Took your advice.
Tonight after trap bar I treated my pull work out like a whole separate entity. Worked to one all out set of chest supported rows. Then (as the pull down machines were busy but the squat rack was not) done some wide grip inverted row, 2 sets. one of 10 one to max (8). After this 2 sets of supninated grip pull down. Lighter then I would have normally but with pauses. Work hard to lean back and pull my elbow to my quads.
To be fair it’s worked. I have a way to go till its as good as the push and legs. But thank you. I can feel the tension in my back. Its nice.

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Excellent work, grasshopper.