Just wondering on rows, if you all prefer using a cable machine, where you can use more weight, or bent over barbell rows?
And if one is better than the other for back development?
I prefer free wieghts all the way. I don't use machines for any lifts. I think that would change if I was looking to target specific muscles or compete but I am just looking to stay in shape and be fit for sports (and keeping up with the kids).
I can get a better stretch and activation in my lats with a seated cable row, a better workout for mid-back with db rows, but move the most weight with a bb row. However, starting a bb row from a deficit can reproduce some of the same stretch as provided by cable rows, and makes the movement harder all the way around - good stuff.
Both. This way you hit different angles and stimulate different parts of the many muscles in the back. Don't forget to also use different grips on these lifts as well.
M.Ed. Ex Phys
bent over barbell rows by far. i dont feel like i hit the lower back at all with cables and i get more carryover to deadlifts with bent over rows and overall better development. i hardly ever do any direct lat work but im insanely wide and the only back work i do is deads and BB rows.
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bb's for back mass development. Swap in cables every 4-6 weeks to mix it up.
Pullups/Chins good for lats. Far superior than lat-pull downs.
For adding thinkness to your lats bentover rows are 2nd to none with mabye the exception of T-Bars (old school jam a bar in the corner), however cables can target the back in many different ways, for example a wide grip palms inward really targets the rhomboids as well as the middle and lower traps, two areas where most people are lacking. Closer grip cables can really strech out the lats and improve the sweep. Your best bet is to incorporate both exercises into your training split. Also, switch your grip on the bentover rows, dont let your body get too accustomed to one form, an underhand grip will really target the lower lat. Don't be afraid to switch out the bent over rows for T-bars from time to time either.
if you really wanna crush the lats though, through a plate or two on a belt and hit the pull up bar!
damn i just repeated some of Rodja's post my bad...