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Pulldowns And Pullups


hey all just wondering how come i could easily do 80kg 4x8 on lat pulldown (not the dodgy one with about 50 pulleys, the one with 2 pulleys and perfect form) at a bodyweight of 65kg and struggled to do 4x6 pullups without any weights?


well for one the lat pull down at 80kg is probably not 80kg, all the machines vary and are probably not the weight they clainm to be, more a reference point. and believe it or not with the pull ups you are using a lot of bicep, compared to the pull down.


cause pullups are harder and build more muscle.


You can do more Pulldowns because it's a better movement! Why are you wasting your time with Pull-ups anyway?

Look at all of the top bodybuilders. They don't do pull-ups they do pulldowns!


One reason pull ups are harder is because you have to stabilize your body as it moves up and down.


You're working opposing muscle groups with pull ups/downs. I find it a lot harder to do pull ups because I have a right shoulder impingement effecting my anterior deltoid. Pull downs are easy as cake, though. So clearly that muscle group is not being worked for the pull downs.


what? it's the same movement. One you're moving your body thru space, the other you're moving an object thru space, still the same movement though.


A lat pulldown will isolate that muscle group and is a good exercise,but it is not a true weight.Pull ups,chin ups will take your back strength to the next level.It will help your overall body strength as well.


damn imaginary weight


They may seem like the same movement, but they're not. Pull/chin-ups are a closed chain exercise, while pull downs are an open chain exercise. In an open chain exercise, your body is stationary, allowing you to isolate a muscle or group. In a closed chain, you move your bodyweight, which allows for less isolation since you have to use a larger group of muscles to get through the exercise.


I understand that, but you're still incorporating the back/biceps in both movements. And while one might be slightly more beneficial to say that a pulldown is inferior and not worth doing (as it seems to have been said), is just not true.


Gotcha. Personally, I don't think pull downs are inferior. It's just hard to tell exactly how much you're pulling due to the mechanical advantage of the pullies, inaccuracies in weight plates, etc. I think any well rounded routine would have both pull downs and pull-ups.

I do 'em till I puke. :slight_smile:


So exactly what muscle group are you saying that pull-downs isolate?


I wouldn't call it isolation, per se, but the pull down allows you to focus more on your lats than a pull-up does. They still involve biceps and traps, but not to the extent that a pull up does.

I mean, I see these huge guys at my gym that can completely load the pull down rack and knock out 5 or 6 reps, but can't do a single chin.


That could also be because they are not used to performing chins. You usually get better at what you practice regularly.


Hilarious!Yeah it's done with mirrors!


Good point!


still though, I find that pullups trasnsfer to pulldowns but not vice versa


Grip and forearm strength come into play much more in pull-ups.


i'm of the opinion that pullups are better than pulldowns. Pullups have different recruitment patterns. They allow your body to take a more natural path than pulldowns and my lats respond much better to them and the aesthetic results i see generally reflect my pullup performace. If your having trouble it might be a forearm/bicep strength issue. When i decided to start doing more pullups than pulldowns i noticed all of my strength was in the plane i did pulldowns in and i couldn't really keep balanced outside of that, it disapeared over time. If your numbers are shit just keep at it with your body wieght. I found i could do them two or three times a week without overtraining. vary your grip, and what you pullup on and your numbers will improve.