Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown: Easy Guide For Spectacular Results

Are you experiencing pain or discomfort in your shoulders or wrists when doing the traditional lat pulldown exercise? If so, you’re not alone! Many people suffer from these same issues. The culprit could be the overhand grip used in the traditional pulldown, which places a lot of stress on these areas. But don’t worry, there’s a solution! Today, we’ll discuss the neutral grip lat pulldown, an alternative exercise that can alleviate pain and discomfort while still effectively targeting your lat muscles. Let’s dive in and learn more about this exercise and how it can benefit you.

Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown Summary

Graphic image of a fit man performing alternate cable triceps extensions.

Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown Instructions

  • Start by grabbing the bar of a lat pulldown machine with a grip shoulder width apart.
  • Seat yourself with your thighs under the leg supports.
  • Pull down the bar to your upper chest.
  • Then, allow the bar to pull your arms back up, fully extending your shoulders.
  • Repeat these natural grip lat pulldowns for sets of 8-12 reps.

Video Tutorial

How to: Neutral Grip Pulldown [Lats-focused] for Physique Development

Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown Muscles

Target (Agonist)

  • Latissimus Dorsi


Dynamic Stabilizers


Antagonist Stabilizers

  • None
Image of the skeletal muscular system with the muscles used in the neutral grip lat pulldown exercise highlighted in red and the rest in blue.

Benefits of Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown

The Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown is an effective exercise to strengthen the Latissimus Dorsi, commonly referred to as the “lats”. This exercise involves gripping the bar with both hands in a neutral position, and pulling it down towards your chest. This movement not only works the lats, but also works the biceps, rear delts, and rhomboids. Performing this exercise regularly in a strength training or fitness routine can help to increase upper back strength and size, improve posture, and build a stronger and more symmetrical back. Additionally, this exercise can help to prevent shoulder injuries by strengthening the muscles around the shoulder joint and improving range of motion.

Tips for Performing Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown

You’ve landed at the right place if you want to forge ahead your capability to perform neutral grip lat pulldown. Using these tips will enable you to maximize the advantages of this amazing workout. Concurrently with strengthening your lats muscles, increasing movability, and also a lower possibility of injury can all be accomplished with this exercise. Let’s begin and take a look at how these suggestions will benefit you.

  • Use a shoulder-width grip: Using a shoulder-width grip on the bar will help ensure you’re targeting your back muscles and not your arms, helping to maximize the effectiveness of the exercise.
  • Keep your elbows tucked: Keeping your elbows tucked during the movement will help you isolate your back muscles, helping to maximize the results of your workout.
  • Lean back slightly: Leaning back slightly during the exercise will help you engage more of your upper back muscles, resulting in a more effective workout.

Benefits and Tips Video

Stop Doing Lat Pulldowns Like This! (8 MISTAKES)

Frequent Mistakes To Avoid

Staying away from mistakes might be the difference between a productive training session and a painful injury when executing neutral grip lat pulldown. From bad form to not engaging your core, these errors can reduce the effectiveness of the exercise and may even raise your risk for injury. But relax, it’s not quite as difficult as it might appear. By knowing the mistakes to avoid and taking the appropriate actions, you may complete the exercise securely and successfully. So let’s get started on avoiding those common errors and making this exercise a normal part of your fitness routine.

  • Not using a neutral grip: Using a neutral grip allows for greater involvement of the back muscles and allows for a more controlled pulldown motion. It also helps prevent strain on the wrists, elbows and shoulders.
  • Not controlling the tempo: Slowing down the tempo of the exercise helps to ensure that the muscles are being worked through their full range of motion and that no momentum is used. This helps to maximize the effectiveness of the exercise.
  • Pulling too far down: Pulling too far down can cause the shoulders to round and put strain on the neck and lower back. To get the most out of the exercise, it’s important to stop just before the bar touches the chest.

Find More Cable Exercises Here

Variations and Complementary Exercises

The Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown is an effective exercise for targeting the lats, but it’s not the only way to work those muscles. If you’re looking for some alternatives, here are some variations, complementary, and alternative exercises that you can use to target the same muscles.

One Arm Pulldown With Bands

Graphic image of One Arm Pulldown With Bands.

One Arm Pulldown With Bands is an effective alternative to Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. This exercise allows for greater range of motion and can be done with a single band for increased resistance. To perform the exercise, anchor one end of the band to a secure object and hold the other end with your hand. Pull the band down towards your hip as you keep your elbow close to your body. This exercise engages both the lats and biceps and is a great compliment to Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown as it targets the same muscles while providing a different range of motion.

Rear Pull Up

Graphic image of Rear Pull Up.

Rear Pull Up is an excellent complementary or alternative exercise to the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. It works the same muscles as the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown, but requires more body control and stability to perform. With Rear Pull Up, the user must hold their body in a straight line while pulling their chest to the bar. This exercise also allows for more range of motion than the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown, as the user has more freedom to move the bar up and down. The Rear Pull Up also helps to build strength and stability in the back and shoulder muscles, making it an ideal exercise for those looking to build muscle strength.

Stability Ball Dumbbell Pullover

Graphic image of Stability Ball Dumbbell Pullover.

The stability ball dumbbell pullover is a great alternative or complementary exercise to the neutral grip lat pulldown. This exercise targets the same muscles as the lat pulldown, but it also works the serratus anterior, subscapularis, and pectoralis major muscles. The stability ball dumbbell pullover requires more core strength and balance than the lat pulldown, making it a great way to challenge your body in different ways. It also works the shoulder and chest muscles more than the lat pulldown, so it can be a great way to add variety to your workout routine.

Check Out These Top Cable Exercises

Weighted Pull Up

Graphic image of Weighted Pull Up.

Weighted Pull Up is a great complementary exercise to Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. It is an advanced bodyweight exercise that strengthens the muscles of the upper body, core, and back. It is an effective way to build strength and muscle mass and can be done with a variety of weights and variations. Compared to Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown, Weighted Pull Up requires more stabilization and recruits more muscle groups, making it an ideal alternative exercise for those looking for a more challenging workout. Additionally, it encourages better posture and greater activation of the lats, which are important for overall upper body strength.

Assisted Close Grip Underhand Chin Up

Graphic image of Assisted Close Grip Underhand Chin Up.

The Assisted Close Grip Underhand Chin Up is an excellent complementary or alternative exercise to the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. This exercise focuses on building strength in the back and biceps, using your own bodyweight to increase resistance and challenge your muscles. It is a great way to add a different angle of pull to your upper body workout, targeting the lats and biceps in a new way. It can also be used as an alternative exercise for those who can’t do the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown due to limited range of motion or shoulder discomfort.

Chin Up

Graphic image of Chin Up.

Chin Up is a great complementary or alternative exercise to Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. Chin Up is an upper body pull exercise that utilizes your own bodyweight to challenge the muscles of your back, biceps, and core. The primary difference between Chin Up and Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown is that Chin Up is a closed chain movement, meaning your bodyweight is actively being used as the resistance, while Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown is an open chain movement in which an external weight is used for resistance. Chin Up can be performed with either a pronated or supinated grip depending on which muscles you want to target. Both exercises are great for building strength and developing back muscles, but Chin Up provides an additional challenge since you are working against your own bodyweight.

Find More Back Exercises Here

Opposing Complementary Exercises

In addition to the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown, you can also do exercises that target opposing muscle groups to ensure balanced strength and development. These exercises will help you get the most out of your workout and prevent overtraining of any particular muscle group. Below are some exercises that will complement the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown.

Dumbbell W Press

Graphic image of Dumbbell W Press.

The Dumbbell W Press is a great complement to the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown exercise as it focuses on the opposing muscle group. This exercise helps to further develop the strength of your chest and shoulders while improving your posture. It also helps to balance out the muscles that are targeted with the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown, making it a great addition to any workout routine. This exercise can be done with a light or moderate weight and focuses on proper form in order to maximize the benefits. It is important to keep your back straight and chest up throughout the entire movement in order to ensure proper form and safety.

One Arm Band Shoulder Press

Graphic image of One Arm Band Shoulder Press.

The One Arm Band Shoulder Press is an excellent exercise to complement the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. By focusing on the opposing muscle group, this exercise strengthens the shoulder muscles and helps to improve posture and balance. The One Arm Band Shoulder Press works the deltoids, trapezius and triceps muscles, while the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown works the lats and biceps. Both exercises help to improve posture and strength, but they also complement each other by targeting different muscle groups. This helps to ensure that no one muscle group is overworked, resulting in improved overall strength and stability.

Seated Dumbbell Military Press

Graphic image of Seated Dumbbell Military Press.

The Seated Dumbbell Military Press is a great exercise to complement the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown. By using opposing muscle groups, the two exercises form a powerful combination for building strength and muscular endurance. The Seated Dumbbell Military Press is an effective exercise that works the anterior deltoids, triceps, and upper chest muscles. This exercise requires a stable core and strong shoulders to press the weights upward. When performed together, the Neutral Grip Lat Pulldown works the back muscles while the Seated Dumbbell Military Press works the chest and shoulder muscles, creating a balanced workout that strengthens both the upper and lower body.

Level Up Your Lat Pulldown Game

Ready to level up your lat pulldown game? Pay attention to your form and grip. Keep your chest up and shoulders back to engage your back muscles fully. Opt for a neutral grip to target your upper back and shoulders. Remember to control the weight as you pull down, and exhale as you release the weight back up. Incorporate these tips into your lat pulldown routine to see improvements in your back strength and appearance.

References: Wikipedia | | | Comprehensive List of Back Cable Exercises

Pin image for neutral grip lat pulldown post. With an image of a man performing the exercise on Top and a graphic of the exercise on the Bottom.

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