Page 1 of 2

horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:56 am
by ephs
not so much going on in the general forum these days. so, i start a new discussion.

a horizontal pulling exercise covers all muscles that are worked in a vertical pull, right? a vertical pull should therefore not be necessary in a training routine?
so, the vertical pulling strength should also increase, if the horizontal pulling strength increases?
do you know any situations in the daily life, where you are pulling vertical?

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 6:28 am
by stuward
Vertical pulling primarily hits the lats which are arguably the most important muscles in the lower back. They do get worked in some horizontal pulling but to a lesser degree. The movement of the scapula is different as well.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:46 am
by Stephen Johnson
stuward wrote:Vertical pulling primarily hits the lats which are arguably the most important muscles in the lower back.
Shouldn't that be the upper back?

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:39 am
by Dub
Stephen Johnson wrote:
stuward wrote:Vertical pulling primarily hits the lats which are arguably the most important muscles in the lower back.
Shouldn't that be the upper back?
Nah. Lats are more important in the lower back are in my mind. They cover almost all of the lower back, and have a major role in support and extension of the back. It's also important on core stabilization to say some. Of course it has function in the upper back area as well, it works with the scapulae, glenohumeral joint and thoracic spine. But I'd still go towards lower back on importance. Upper back has more important muscles in it than lats.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:12 am
by Stephen Johnson
Dub wrote: Lats are more important in the lower back are in my mind. They cover almost all of the lower back, and have a major role in support and extension of the back.
Funny, I thought spinal support and extension was the function of the Erector Spinae. Latissimus Dorsi is involved with shoulder and scapula functions.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:33 am
by Dub
Stephen Johnson wrote: Funny, I thought spinal support and extension was the function of the Erector Spinae. Latissimus Dorsi is involved with shoulder and upper back functions.
It's true. But think about this anatomically. The lats cover almost the whole lower back and has fascial connections almost everywhere in the spinal area, except the cervical one. They attach everywhere, including the thoracic spine, ribs, humerus, scapulae. They are one of the most active muscles in the whole back, during all kinds of movements. Holds and carries, presses, squats, pulls, you name it. It has huge importance in core and spinal stability.
I'd consider that the other spinal extensors and stabilizers hold a much smaller, but a necessary role in the back. When talking about erector spinae or multifidus or the spinalis muscles, they are not as big as lats, don't have much coverage, or they don't have much leverage so to speak. They are mainly connected directly on the spine with lots of insertions, and provide more of an isometric and stabilizing role in my mind. But, this is my opinion, and I should point out that none of these muscles should be counted out when talking about important muscles of the back.

EDIT: One great example is the deadlift. Altough lats are important on keeping the bar close to the body, you need strong and big lats to pull big numbers, they have great purpose on spinal extension and spinal stability. And vice versa, Heavy deadlifts usually build lats quite well.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:41 am
by KPj
Lats connect your shoulders to your hips and are potentially one of the most important "core" muscles you have.

KPj

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:51 pm
by stuward
http://deansomerset.com/2012/06/08/the- ... ck-muscle/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:27 pm
by Matt Z
"do you know any situations in the daily life, where you are pulling vertical?" - ephs

Any kind of climbing.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:15 am
by Stephen Johnson
@Stuward, Dub:

Thanks for the link and info. A lot to think about.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:39 am
by Jungledoc
If you just train muscles, you probably have a point. But if you train movements, you are not just strengthening the muscles involved, but getting the muscles to work together to accomplish a different tasks.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:57 am
by ephs
@matt: yeah, i also thought of climbing, but you don't climb often in daily life, if you are not performing climbing as a sport.

@jungledoc: this makes definately sense.

@the others: sounds like it is very important to perform a vertical pull on a regularly basis.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:21 am
by Matt Z
"@matt: yeah, i also thought of climbing, but you don't climb often in daily life, if you are not performing climbing as a sport." - ephs

Maybe not, but I'd still like to be able to climb.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:00 pm
by stuward
If you just use daily activity as a standard for fitness, why bother exercising? Imagine extreme circumstances that you could get into. Natural disasters, attacks, getting lost in the woods, falling down a hole, etc. Many people in those situation just die. Fit people survive. You only have to use your fitness once to make it worthwhile.

Re: horizontal pull vs. vertical pull

Posted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:46 pm
by ephs
stuward wrote:If you just use daily activity as a standard for fitness, why bother exercising? Imagine extreme circumstances that you could get into. Natural disasters, attacks, getting lost in the woods, falling down a hole, etc. Many people in those situation just die. Fit people survive. You only have to use your fitness once to make it worthwhile.
you are right. i'm just asking me the question "does this exercise make sense in daily life?" before i do it. that's why i don't do isolation work for biceps, triceps, laterals or so, cause it doesn't bring me an advange in any situation, cause most of the time these muscles are just assisting other muscles in certain situations.

when it comes to the vertical pull, the question is very hard to answer, cause the movement is crucial in the situations, you mentioned, but maybe the horizontal pull could be enough to increase the strength for vertical pulls.

rippetoe, for example, recommends also doing dips, when you start doing pull ups in addition to rows, i think the main concept behind this is to work the back and the chest equally hard.