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Dorian Yates Back Workout

Dorian Yates, winner of 6 Mr. Olympia titles has very specific ideas on working his back. He shocked the bodybuilding world coming onstage in 1992 with the thickest most detailed back the professional world of bodybuilding had not seen since Lee Haney days.

Dorian went on to win the next 5 Mr. Olympia titles after 1992 using a system of attacking the back that added a thickness and detail not previously seen onstage. His advice to his many followers was to not get caught doing wide grip pull-downs to widen the back.

Dorian explains that the assumption by most bodybuilders that wide-grip pull-downs will get a wider back is totally incorrect. Dorian explains that a narrower grip will give a better stretch and a much more of a complete contraction on the lats using full range.

In the workout listed below Dorian has hammer strength pull-downs as the first movement of his back workout. This is a closed-grip movement specifically to isolate the lats and work them to full range without your biceps failing, like would be done using a wide grip.

Dorian explains that doing deadlifts at the end of a back workout makes it easier to reach the point of failure doing this movement. If deadlift was done at the start of a back workout a heavier weight would be required to achieve the same result increasing the risk of injury.

He explains that momentum is the biggest problem when training the back correctly. The peak contraction at the top of the concentric movement is often ignored because of momentum, just like the slow eccentric contraction which allows a heavier weight to be used, he says one should squeeze at the top of all concentric movements when training the back.

In order to perform any back movement correctly peak contraction at the top of the concentric movement needs to be adhered to at all times. The following back workout that Dorian does is only done after a good warm-up and maximum weights are used to reach failure under 10 reps.

Dorian Yates Back Routine

1. Hammer-strength pull-downs: 1 X 8-10 reps
2. Underhand barbell rowing: 1 X 8-10 reps
3. Hammer Strength one-arm rowing: 1 X 8-10 reps
4. Seated cable rowing: 1 X 8-10 reps
5. Back extensions: 1 X 10-12 reps
6. Deadlifts: 1 X 8 reps

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