mr popular wrote:
Do you know how to spread your scapula, for instance in order to do a back lat spread?
If not I encourage you to learn, because that really helped me with this exact scenario.
But if so, I have found that flexing my lats, and pushing them out hard in between sets of pulldowns and pullups really helps me to the keep the focus on the lats.
On a sidenote, since you aren’t getting a good connection with your lats when you do pulldowns, where are you feeling it? That could tell us something about improper technique.
rear delts and bicep, but not feeling a whole lot of anything. I feel like extending the shoulders forward helps so much with activating the lats in rows, I just don’t know how to get the same effect from vertical pulls. However Kroc’s advice seems good. I might start doing chins like him again.[/quote]
Really emphasize and feel the stretch on each rep. In other words you want to actually stretch the shoulder blades up and slightly forwards (hope this makes sense, if not let me know and I’ll try to explain it in better detail) on every single rep. Then pull your elbows down/shoulder blades down, contracting the lats.
You also do not need to bring the bar to touch your chest or even reach your chin. Just contract the lats as much as you can and wherever the bar ends up, that’s where it ends up.
Watch Dave Henry do lat pull-downs (skip to about 1:54 for the lat pull-downs), see how he really emphasizes the stretch? Try doing them like that and see if it doesn’t help.