T Nation

Need ROM Advice on Basic Lifts

I notice a lot of bigger guys not going the full rom on some lifts but packing some really heavy weights. I also get shit for not going as high as I can (as in the DB shrug example below) but I feel stimulation.

Barbell Overhead - I’ve read to the chest, but i see videos of guys doing it to the nose or forehead if at all.

Barbell Chest Exercises - Hitting the chest for sure, but how far away from the chest do you press? I lose my strength the higher I press. I take this is where floor press come in handy?

Shrugs - Are they supposed ot have the same ROM as if you shrugged just your shoulders alone?

Rows - I go for a stretch in my back like my arms are being pulled away from my torso (almost out of my sockets) but with a tense bend in my elbows, then I extend my upper back and row in to make everything tight.

Lat pulldown - does it always have to hit the chest?? I get more power and weight when I am not so strict.

How do these sound?

Sorry for the basic ass questions, hence why they are here.

It depends on what your goal is. A bodybuilder might not lock out on lifts like benchpress and military in order to keep the stress on the chest and shoulders, respectively. A powerlifter might be doing floor or board presses in order to strengthen triceps to help with sticking points like the lockout. Purposeful partial ROM (not just being lazy) can be a useful tool/technique, particularly for advanced guys who are at or near their strength limit.

I guess what I wanted to learn was the purposeful limited ROM (not being lazy). I am trying to build mass. I suppose I am on the right track but not too sure…Thanks for your response.

[quote]earthquake wrote:

Barbell Overhead - I’ve read to the chest, but i see videos of guys doing it to the nose or forehead if at all.

[/quote]

I used to look down upon, and somewhat mock anyone that did not go all the way to the chest. Started having some shoulders problems. Cephalic_Carnage, smart guy on here, justified why going no lower than the chin is just as effective. I followed suit and have not had any problems since.

Sometimes I go full ROM, sometimes partial. It’s all good if used effectively. Good for you to question and learn why something is done.

[quote]TheDudeAbides wrote:

[quote]earthquake wrote:

Barbell Overhead - I’ve read to the chest, but i see videos of guys doing it to the nose or forehead if at all.

[/quote]

I used to look down upon, and somewhat mock anyone that did not go all the way to the chest. Started having some shoulders problems. Cephalic_Carnage, smart guy on here, justified why going no lower than the chin is just as effective. I followed suit and have not had any problems since.

Sometimes I go full ROM, sometimes partial. It’s all good if used effectively. Good for you to question and learn why something is done.[/quote]

Out of any lift, shortening the ROM for OHP (BB and DB) has had the biggest impact for me. I only go as low as the nose/ears and NEVER lock out.

I never really “felt” OHP’s till I started doing this. Delts were always a weakness in my development, but have been growing nicely since I’ve limited the ROM.

OP- Pulldowns don’t need to go all the way to the chest IMO. I think somewhere around the nose/chin is better.

If by decreasing the ROM of your lift you can substantially increase the amount you can lift then you should have a positive physiological effect on your muscles. Just remember that strength is range specific so you will not become much stronger at the bottom of your lifts when you return to full range.

So decrease the range when

  1. Biomechanical deficits causes pain.
  2. You want to lift heavier and hit the muscles slightly differently. But remember full range is important so try to go full range the majority of the time.

Thanks for your tips guys.

I find the full range sometimes a road block…not like in the bench press but in the lat pulldowns or overhead pressing. i still do it but have this fear that if I don’t go for a full rom i’ll be in a slippery slope of having to severly cut the weight to regain strength in the ROM i cut out.

I know this isn’t really specific to any of your actual inquiries, but ROM can be a tricky thing. It can screw with you mentally and make you question if you’re doing things right.

What you have to ultimately ask yourself is, Is what I’m currently doing effectively hitting the muscle I want it to? If it isn’t, there’s a chance you’re using a ROM too low and with too much weight. Or - Maybe it could be that the exercise just isn’t for you.

For instance, I used full ROM on always on Leg Press. Unfortunately, my quads and hammies outpower my quads and they soon became very weak. For the last few months I’ve been focusing on slightly lessened ROM but really focusing on exploding out of the hole with my quads only.

So simply put, it depends on the exercise / your body / your goals for that exercise.

Actually, that’s pretty much on the dot. My ROM for sure isn’t really low or minimal. In the case of lat pulldown I always go to the chest. If i get to a weight where I can’t get it to my chest though (lets say my chin or nose instead) I start questioning myself.

However today I cranked the weight up and did more reps than last week to the chin with lat pulldown and felt like I was hitting my lats. (thanks cueball)

You hit it on the dot pretty much. I was just bringing the questions that I had toward myself here.

just remember not to switch good form for weight