The primary muscles stressed in this movement are the muscles in your upper back (outer latissimus dorsi). The secondary muscles stressed are the biceps and shoulders.

Starting Position

Grip the bar in the designated position with your arms extended straight up over your head (grip will be determined by the width of your shoulders). Push your chest up and pull your shoulder blades together and keep your shoulders down.


Pull the bar down to chin level (90 degrees) as you push your chest up to the bar and squeeze the shoulder blades together and downward. Take 2 to 3 seconds to raise the bar up to the extended position.

Training Tips

  • Keep your chest up and shoulders back to help isolate the lats
  • Be sure to focus on brining the bar down with your back muscles, trying not to use just your arms

Warning Tips

  • Do not let your shoulders rise up as you raise the bar up. Failure to do so can result in serious injury to your shoulders.
  • Do not rock up and down as you raise and lower the bar. Failure to do so can result in serious injury to your back, biceps and shoulders.
  • Do not raise the bar any faster than 2 to 3 seconds. You must be in control at all times during this movement. The faster you perform this movement, the less control you will have which in turn will increase your risk of injury.

Robert Bovee Certified Master PPT, RTS, ETS, FTS

As one of the most successful Professional Personal Trainers and Exercise/Fitness Therapists in the United States, Robert continues to remain at the forefront of the industry by providing his clients with a thorough education and the tools to implement that education. By improving his client’s physical health, strength, endurance, cardiovascular fitness and nutritional habits, he is able to motivate them to lead longer, happier and more productive lives.

Guest Author

Guest authors offer experience and educational insights based on their specific area of expertise. These authors are contributing writers for the NFPT blog because they have valuable information to share with NFPT-CPTs and the fitness community at-large. If you are interested in contributing to the NFPT blog as a guest, please send us a note expressing your interest and tell us how you can contribute valuable insights to our readers. We look forward to hearing from you! Send to editor@nfpt.com