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Triceps Pushdown
by Dr. David Williams

If performed correctly, a triceps extension using a high pulley (triceps pushdown) is a great exercise for isolating the triceps.

At the starting position, the lifter should have a fairly narrow grip on the bar and place the elbows tightly against the sides of the body so that they are parallel to the torso.

When performing the exercise, the lifter should raise and lower the resistance throughout the greatest possible range of motion, without significantly changing the position of the upper arms.   It is OK for the lower arms to go beyond a point in which they are parallel to the ground, provided that there is little or no movement of the upper arms.

Changing the position of the upper arms during the performance of the exercise causes the other muscles to be involved. For example, flaring the elbows away from the body essentially turns the triceps pushdown into an exercise that resembles a close grip bench press. Because of this, the chest and shoulders are added to the mix. So, keep the elbows at your sides and go through the entire range of motion at the elbow joint and you will have a safe and effective exercise for the triceps muscle.

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