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Lats: Exercises, Anatomy And Tips!

Find out what exercises work best for your Lats! The smarter you are, the bigger you'll get!

Anatomy Of The Latissimus

Major Muscles That Act At The Shoulder

Move your mouse over the following links for information on the specific muscles.

Latissimus Dorsi

Rotator Cuff



Top Lat Exercises


Tips: Works the lower lats. Sit at a lat pulldown machine or kneel in front of a cable pulley. Hold lat bar with hands about 8 inches apart. Start with arms extended overhead. Pull bar straight down until it is even with your upper chest. Return slowly to starting position. Do not swing or lean back!

Tips: Reach up and grab the bar with a firm overhand grip. Your hands should be roughly twice your shoulder width apart. This helps work more of your lats, rather than your biceps. Straighten your arms and let your body hang from the bar. You can keep your legs straight or bend your knees and cross your feet. Slowly pull your body up to the bar so that the top of your chest nearly touches the bar and your chin is over the bar. Try to keep your body straight without arching or swinging. As you move upwards, focus on pulling your elbows down at an angle toward your rib cage. Once your lats have completely contracted at the top, slowly lower your body to the starting position. A spotter can lift your legs slightly if you need help on the last few reps. You can also add weight by using a special Dip Belt.

Tips: Start with your legs positioned snugly under the kneepads of a pulldown machine. Your feet should be flat on the floor. Grasp the wide bar firmly with an overhand grip. Your hands should be almost twice your shoulder width apart. Pull the bar down on top of your chest, arching your back slightly. Focus on keeping your elbows directly below the bar. Pause briefly with the bar in position right on top of your collarbone. Slowly raise the bar back to the starting position. Do NOT lean back too far and pull the weight down using your body weight!

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