Cutting Edge Fitness - Trainer Tutorial

Lat Pullover Machine (Pul)

Setup video

  1. For an existing client, referring to the workout log:
    1. Set the weight pin.
    2. Set the seat position.
    3. Seat the client and skip to step 3.
  2. For a new client:
    1. Remove the weight pin or select a very light setting.
    2. Squeeze the brake lever and slide the seat to its highest position.
    3. Seat the client.
    4. Step on the foot lever to bring the movement arm forward to the point where the client can put their elbows on the elbow pads easily, and have them rest their hands on the bar above the elbow pads.
    5. Tell them to use their elbows to pull the movement arm down, and as far behind their back as possible.
    6. If the movement bar hits their legs, release the brake lever to lower the seat until the bar clears their legs.
    7. The shoulder joints and the the pivot points of the movement bar should be aligned, so you may have to lower the seat further for a taller client.
    8. Step on the foot lever, have the client remove their arms from the movement arm, and return the movement arm to the starting position.
    9. Set the weight pin
  3. It is not necessary for the feet to be in contact with the floor, but if having the legs dangle stresses a client injury, provide a footstool, but note that if a footstool is used, it may get in the way of the foot lever, so be prepared to move the footstool as the client nears failure..
  4. Have the client fasten the seat belt and pull it snug.
  5. Step on the foot lever and have the client reach up and put their elbows onto the elbow pads. Tell them to rest their hands on the upper bar, but not to grip it tightly.

Introduction for newer clients

Include any of the following points:

  • This exercise works your back, primarily your lats, the largest muscles in the upper body. You will feel your shoulders, biceps, triceps and even your abs working at different times while performing this movement. But try to focus on your lats, to avoid reaching failure with any of the smaller, secondary muscles first.
  • Keep your head neutral, and look straight ahead or close your eyes.
  • Relax your shoulders and keep your shoulder blades flat on your back.
  • Pressing on your elbows, pull the movement arm bar to your belt.
  • A critical part of the exercise is the last 2 inches of the pull, and the first 2-3 inches on the negative phase (as you begin to return the bar to its starting position).
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades together with the bar at your belt for a couple of seconds, and then slowly begin the negative phase, resisting with your lats.
  • When you can no longer move the weight, I will provide extra resistance for ten seconds with the bar either close to your belly or near the midpoint of the move. Pull against that resistance as hard as you can for the full ten seconds.

Beginning the exercise

Position yourself to the side of the machine, count down and begin the exercise: 3, 2, 1, begin, 1, 2, 3...

Cues (use shortest version possible for client)


Trainer cue

Crunches to move the weight

Use your lats (not your abs or your shoulders)

Turns early

Pull all the way back (back to your belly).

Approaches maximum flexion


Moves the head in any direction

Head neutral.

Stresses grip or forearms.Relax (or Release) the grip.
Arches back.Back flat.

Trainer Resistance failure procedure video

As the client approaches failure, apply trainer resistance, starting either from the point of greatest flexion (i.e., with the bar as close to the client's belt as possible), or from the midpoint of the move, with the elbows at about shoulder height. Caution: As the client approaches failure, be prepared to use the foot lever to stop the movement arm from slamming down to its resting position with the client's elbows still on the elbow pads. This can damage the shoulders. To apply resistance:

  1. Take a split stance facing the machine.
  2. Take hold of a vertical frame member with your left hand, and grab the top of the pullover bar with your right.
  3. Tell the client you are beginning to apply additional resistance, and count from 1-10 as the client resists (to failure) as you press the bar up or back.
  4. Step on the weight-assist bar, have the client remove their arms from the elbow pads, and lower the weights.

Machine use 1-rep video

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