The Inappropriate Use of the Rack Pull | Mark Rippetoe The Inappropriate Use of the Rack Pull | Mark Rippetoe

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Thread: The Inappropriate Use of the Rack Pull | Mark Rippetoe

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    Default The Inappropriate Use of the Rack Pull | Mark Rippetoe

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    I have noticed an increasingly common problem in barbell gyms, that I attribute primarily to laziness. Yes, the rack pull exercise is easier to do than the full pull off the floor. Yes, it's easier to get into a good lumbar extension...

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    This article makes a lot of sense to me and it's interesting that it was posted so quickly after Ray's video that I didn't understand, where he says at the end of the NLP when the deadlifts gets too heavy to pull 1x5 the answer is to move it to a partial movement that is the rack pull. I think that is blatantly wrong, especially in the context of this article.

    I asked about that in this thread: Is It Time to Add Rack Pulls? | Ray Gillenwater

    And was pointed to this article from Nick: Rack Pulls 101 | Nick Delgadillo

    Which I responded with that I still do not understand the rationale because the example program has no heavy full deadlifts or haltings: only the rack pulls and a light deadlift day. Am I missing something? Because I think Ray's video is very misleading and has the potential to mess up someone's training.

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    Quote Originally Posted by asm44 View Post
    This article makes a lot of sense to me and it's interesting that it was posted so quickly after Ray's video that I didn't understand, where he says at the end of the NLP when the deadlifts gets too heavy to pull 1x5 the answer is to move it to a partial movement that is the rack pull. I think that is blatantly wrong, especially in the context of this article.

    I asked about that in this thread: Is It Time to Add Rack Pulls? | Ray Gillenwater

    And was pointed to this article from Nick: Rack Pulls 101 | Nick Delgadillo

    Which I responded with that I still do not understand the rationale because the example program has no heavy full deadlifts or haltings: only the rack pulls and a light deadlift day. Am I missing something? Because I think Ray's video is very misleading and has the potential to mess up someone's training.
    I was puzzled by Rayís video as well.
    Rack pulls without haltings?
    I wondered if there was a re-thinking of the protocols.

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    This is from Nick's article,

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Delgadillo
    The deadlift is big, giant, gross motor movement that involves heavy weight and lots of muscle mass. They are not technique dependent and are limited almost entirely by the ability to produce the requisite amount of force to move the weight. By switching to rack pulls, you are able to take advantage of the ability to keep loading the pull relatively quickly while sacrificing some range of motion. The trade-off of pulling in excess of 100 lbs over your deadlift weight with a shorter range of motion while staying with sets of 5 seems to be a good one, given the need for absolute force production and low skill necessary for the pull within the program. Iíve found this to be a much better alternative to switching to 3s or some other programming scheme for the deadlift in the long run.
    (emphasis added)

    I think this is the key, noting that this recommendation is for some late novices. To me, you're really overloading the partial movement in order to train just brute squeezing on the bar, so much so that it covers the bottom part of the movement that a halting would for a more advanced trainee. And remember, you're not going to exceed your deadlift load when you train the halting; you can't. Again, it's not going to work forever, nor does everyone need to do it.

    Asm44, very few people will pull 605 for 5. Moreover, that you were able to find a solution that allowed you to keep adding weight on the bar, i.e., by decreasing deadlift frequency, is also good. Again, it's not unlocking achievements, but solving problems involving a few independent variables.

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    The eccentric loading on the spinal erectors at the bottom of the deadlift is really the stickiest wicket in the NLP. It's no coincidence that not only does the deadlift move to intermediate programming well before the end of the "novice" progression on a schedule in fact *more conservative* than most intermediate programs. Looking at training logs and people I've taken through it a fair chunk of missed lifts (on the squat and deadlift) towards the end are due to fatigued erectors (even the "not eating and sleeping enough" problem cases can be counted, since fatigue "accumulates" in the erectors). I was actually quite struck by how good sense it made to do rack pulls, which are effectively deadlifts that omit this fatiguing position, for one or two sessions during the end of NLP "taper." I myself thought to introduce rack pulls and haltings towards the end of my NLP but found that the rack pull itself was enough of a "break" (implementing it as rack pull-full DL-halting-full DL) for a single week that I could resume weekly pulling once I transitioned to Texas method programming, and have been doing so for a few months at this point. It probably should not be done for more than three sessions at the very most but it's I think a quite useful movement to get the deadlift "unstuck" towards the very end and to give the squat some room to grow as a back exercise as it gets heavier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Watson View Post
    I was puzzled by Ray’s video as well.
    Rack pulls without haltings?
    I wondered if there was a re-thinking of the protocols.
    1.) I don't reflexively use halting deadlifts because someone is doing rack pulls. I do use halting deadlifts a lot, but the reason isn't "rack pulls = also halting." Halting deadlifts are done at a lighter weight than rack pulls. When exposure to frequent high loads is the primary consideration (which is the case for all novices and most intermediate training) rack pulls fit the role beautifully and slowing down loading by adding haltings is something I'm not interested in doing. I will use haltings further along in someone's training to manage overall stress when rack pulls and deadlifts are getting REALLY heavy as a third heavy pull that's not quite as heavy.

    2.) I make no claim that this is the right way and the only way to do things. You will probably be just fine doing haltings alternating with rack pulls right from the start. As with all post-novice programming considerations - it depends, and it probably doesn't matter.

    3.) Re: protocols - if people think The Council meets to decide the approved method with which to approach post-novice programming, you will be disappointed. There is not one. Only best practices as with all complicated processes. The SS NLP works universally for reasons that have been discussed billions of times on this forum and everywhere else. Things aren't so cleanly prescriptive for post-novice programming. If this is new information for you, just refer to Practical Programming and note the structure - Novice - one program, one approach. Post novice - concepts and principles with lots of examples of how those concepts and principles are applied through various programs. The unifying concept throughout (and this is really damn important) is that a REAL PR as measured by weight on the bar in the basic barbell lifts is the measure of progress, regardless of level of training advancement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Delgadillo View Post
    1.) I don't reflexively use halting deadlifts because someone is doing rack pulls. I do use halting deadlifts a lot, but the reason isn't "rack pulls = also halting." Halting deadlifts are done at a lighter weight than rack pulls. When exposure to frequent high loads is the primary consideration (which is the case for all novices and most intermediate training) rack pulls fit the role beautifully and slowing down loading by adding haltings is something I'm not interested in doing. I will use haltings further along in someone's training to manage overall stress when rack pulls and deadlifts are getting REALLY heavy as a third heavy pull that's not quite as heavy.

    2.) I make no claim that this is the right way and the only way to do things. You will probably be just fine doing haltings alternating with rack pulls right from the start. As with all post-novice programming considerations - it depends, and it probably doesn't matter.

    3.) Re: protocols - if people think The Council meets to decide the approved method with which to approach post-novice programming, you will be disappointed. There is not one. Only best practices as with all complicated processes. The SS NLP works universally for reasons that have been discussed billions of times on this forum and everywhere else. Things aren't so cleanly prescriptive for post-novice programming. If this is new information for you, just refer to Practical Programming and note the structure - Novice - one program, one approach. Post novice - concepts and principles with lots of examples of how those concepts and principles are applied through various programs. The unifying concept throughout (and this is really damn important) is that a REAL PR as measured by weight on the bar in the basic barbell lifts is the measure of progress, regardless of level of training advancement.
    Thanks Nick. Excellent clarification.

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