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Kneeling Lat Pulldowns


How To Do A Kneeling Lat Pulldown

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The kneeling lat pulldown is a variation of the lat pulldown that can be done without access to a lat pulldown machine -- ideal if the machine is busy and you're short on time!

This exercise uses the cable machine to replicate the lat pulldown, and you are able to perform multiple grip variations. Adopting a kneeling position allows for more stability and greater range of motion than standing, although it's worth noting that the core will be more involved than with conventional pulldowns.

Depending on the cable attachment chosen, the kneeling lat pulldown can use a neutral, pronated (overhand), or supinated (underhand) grip to target different areas of the upper body. The neutral grip places less emphasis on the shoulders and wrists, the supinated grip involves greater bicep involvement, and the pronated grip is likely to provide a greater challenge to the lats and traps.

Check out some other lat pulldown variations: lat pulldowns, close grip lat pulldowns, wide grip lat pulldowns, reverse grip lat pulldowns, straight arm lat pulldowns

Commonly Asked Questions On Kneeling Lat Pulldowns

What’s The Difference Between A Lat Pulldown And A Kneeling Lat Pulldown?

The main difference between the kneeling lat pulldown and conventional lat pulldown is that the kneeling lat pulldown is performed on a cable machine while kneeling on the ground instead of sitting on the lat pulldown machine. While the movement is the same, there is more core and lower body involvement as the lat pulldown machine stabilises the core by pinning down the legs. Most people can lift heavier with conventional lat pulldowns.

Are Kneeling Lat Pulldowns Good?

Kneeling lat pulldowns are a good full body exercise that challenges the lats, traps, rhomboids, and biceps, with the core and lower body working to stabilise the movement. Most people are unable to lift as much load with this variation, so it’s beneficial to include both in your workouts if strength or hypertrophy are your main goals, or to use the kneeling lat pulldown when you’re unable to get on the lat pulldown machine.

Alternatives To The Kneeling Lat Pulldown?

Using the lat pulldown machine, the assisted pull up machine or the single arm lat pulldown are good alternatives to the kneeling lat pulldown.

Kneeling Lat Pulldown Tips

Engaging the core and squeezing the glutes helps to keep the torso still and prevent you from using momentum to pull the weight. This will help you to challenge the intended muscles and prevent injury.

How To Do A Kneeling Lat Pulldown

  1. Decide on your grip position and attach the relevant handle high up on the cable machine.

  2. Grip the bar while standing in front of the machine, then take a small step back and kneel on the floor.

  3. Brace the core and squeeze the glutes then begin the reps by pulling your elbows down towards your hips (neutral grip) or glutes (standard or wide grip). Stop when the attachment reaches just below the chin.

  4. Reverse the movement by slowly extending the arms, allowing the cable to pull the attachment up in a smooth, controlled movement.

If you’re not sure if any of the above exercises are suitable for you, please consult your doctor before you start it. Need guidance on how to perform the exercise? Ask a personal trainer at your gym.