- Place your feet on top of a bench. Your body should be in a straight line from your head to feet, and in a decline position. Obviously the greater the decline (the higher your feet are elevated and the closer to the ground your hands are), the more challenging the exercise will be.
- Set your grip so your palms are facing away from you and are approximately shoulder width apart, or you can use a neutral grip. In this video, I am using a neutral grip.
- Before you go, take a deep breath in through your nose (360 degrees of air around the spine), brace your core (3-4 out of 10 in terms of the intensity of the brace), tuck your ribcage towards your hips (close the space in your midsection), and squeeze your glutes. This will stabilize your pelvis and spine and will allow you to focus on your upper body.
- Initiate the movement by using the muscles in your mid/upper back and drawing your shoulder blades together and down (bring each shoulder blade down towards the opposite hip). Once you are in the top position, pause for a brief count and really contract these muscles. Do not lead the movement with your arms.
- Do not allow your elbows to flare. They should remain at approximately a 45 degree position (similar to an overhead press). If you are using a neutral grip, your elbows will be closer to your sides.
- Lower down to the bottom position with control. Do not disengage the muscles for the duration of the exercise. Your elbows should be close to fully extended, but not hyperextended. Keep your shoulders relatively packed.
- During the descending portion of the movement, your shoulder blades should move in the opposite direction as what they did during the ascending portion of the movement.
- Your spine should remain in neutral(ish) alignment for the duration of the exercise. I used the word ''neutralish'' as there is no one definition of neutral. It varies from person to person. Do not allow your lower back to hyperextend, or ribcage to flare.
You can make this exercise easier by elevating the handles of the TRX (or bar), and lowering your feet.
You can make this exercise more challenging by lowering the handles of the TRX (or bar) and elevating your feet even more so your body is in more of a diagonal/decline position. You can also perform negative reps and take 3-5 seconds to lower yourself down. You can also place weight resistance, in the form of chains or a weight plate, on your lap.
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