T Nation

Weak Point - Dips and Chins

You mentioned below about working in an article about weak points. I have one example for you.

I really struggle to keep my shoulders down when doing decline bench, dips and chins. As I add weight/fatigue, my shoulders move up toward my ears. Its more than a coaching cue. I can push press more weight than I can decline press with good form. Are there specific exercises I can do to work the muscles in the back that keep the humerus down in the joint in a stable position?


Do seated rows… but do them like this:

  1. start with the torso straight but the back fully stretched (imagine your arms being pulled out of their sockets). Actually let the deltoids move forward and even raise them a little.

  2. From that position the first move is to retract them (bring the shoulders back AND DOWN… do not let the traps do the retraction and make the shoulders go up). But do so with ZERO arm bend (so keep your arms straight)

  3. Hold that contraction for 2 seconds THEN you row while focusing on keeping the shoulders back and down.

Go back to the starting position. Do every rep like that and at the end, when you know you wont be able to get one more full rep just do steps 1 and 2 but hold te retraction for as long as possible.

If you take a close grip parallel attachment and put it on a pulldown cable you can put one leg on the back of the seat and do rows from a higher point in a standing position. You can feel that right in the mid traps and rhomboids, These have helped me connect a lot with that area creating more stability for all of my pressing movements. Im not 100% sure what loading parameters to use but typically pyramids are good down to 6 reps for me. Hope this helps