How to Do the V Bar Triceps Pushdown Properly

The V Bar triceps pushdown is an isolation exercise that works the triceps and arms. It also works the chest but to a lesser degree.

It is also known as the triceps pushdown V-Bar, or if you like, the V-Bar Pushdown.

The movement involves pulling down weights attached to a high cable pulley machine. A V-Bar attachment will be attached to the end of the cable and will aid in pulling the weights.

Its mechanics can allow you to go heavier, especially if you are using a straight rope.

The V Bar pushdown is not complicated and can be performed by anyone. It is gender-neutral and suitable for people across all age groups. It is also suitable for bodybuilders.

Also known as triceps pushdown V-Bar or V-Bar pushdown.

Targeted muscles: Triceps, arms, and Chest.

Exercise type: Strength.

Exercise mechanics: Isolation.

Difficulty level: Intermediate.

Required Equipment: High cable pulley machine, V-Bar attachment.

STEPS:

  • Attach the V Bar to the end of the cable attached to the high cable pulley machine. Grab both ends of the V Bar with both hands using an overhand grip. Ensure your hands are shoulder-width apart.
  • Stand upright, maintaining a straight torso. Lean forward slightly and bring your shoulders (upper arm) close to your body. Also, ensure your upper arm remain perpendicular to the ground. This is the starting position.
  • Flex your triceps muscles as you begin to pull down the weights. Extend your elbows and push your arms down until it touches the front of your thighs. Ensure your upper arm remains stationary throughout the movement.
  • Hold the position for a moment as you allow your triceps to feel the tension.
  • Let the cable machine go back up slowly by resisting the movement. You should control the movement of the V Bar to prevent injuries. This should mark the end of one rep.
  • Repeat the reps as many times as you can.

MUSCLES WORKED BY V BAR TRICEPS PUSHDOWN

The V bar triceps pushdown exercise targets the triceps muscles. Pushing the cable machine downwards will squeeze your triceps muscles, therefore, will strengthen them and increase their size. It will also work the forearms and shoulder muscles.

BENEFITS OF V BAR TRICEPS PUSHDOWN

IT WILL TONE YOUR ARMS

The V bar triceps pushdown exercise targets two out of the three triceps heads, that is, the medial, and lateral heads. Performing the activity frequently with proper form will tone your triceps muscles, increasing their size. Also, it will increase your shoulder stability. Therefore, it will improve the looks of your arms.

IT WILL WORK YOUR ENTIRE UPPER BODY MUSCLES

Even though the exercise isolates the triceps primarily, it also works other body muscles to a lesser degree. Among those muscles are the glutes, lats, abs, pecs, and traps.

Most of these muscles aid in the stabilization of the body. Therefore, the V Bar pushdown will strengthen those muscles, giving you a stronger and broader back.

IT WILL IMPROVE YOUR PERFORMANCE IN COMPOUND EXERCISES

The V Bar triceps pushdown will activate your triceps – important muscles for performing heavy exercises.

Working those muscles frequently and in the correct form will improve your performance in compound exercises, such as diamond push-ups and close-grip bench press.

Also, it will impact your performance in other exercises that rely on triceps muscles.

ALTERNATIVES TO THE V BAR TRICEPS PUSHDOWN

SKULL CRUSHERS

Skull crushers are an effective exercise for activating your triceps. It is a suitable exercise for powerlifters who are after stronger arms and broader shoulders. That makes the skull crusher an exercise for the people.

Despite having a name that spells danger, exercise has many benefits to the body. Those benefits include having larger arms, healthier elbows, and improved strength.

It may have damaging effects on the body if performed in the wrong form. Therefore, be sensible when performing the skull crushers.

STEPS:

  • Begin the workout by lying flat on your back and stepping firmly on the ground to improve your stability.
  • Hold a pair of dumbbells in your arms and position them above your chest. Your firms should face each other. Also, remember to engage your core.
  • Fix your elbows in one position then hinge them in a slow-motion as bring the dumbbells close to your ears.
  • Return the dumbbells to the top by extending and stretching your elbows. This marks the end of the rep.
  • Repeat the exercise till you exhaust your set target.

MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN PERFORMING THE V BAR TRICEPS PUSHDOWN

EXCESSIVE MOVEMENT OF THE ELBOW

A common mistake with the V Bar triceps pushdown is excessive elbow movement. Most athletes tend to sway their elbows back and forward when performing the exercise.

While swinging your arms may work to your advantage, especially when dealing with heavier weights, it will exhaust your lats.

Therefore, tuck in your elbows to improve how the V Bar triceps pushdown works on your shoulders.

FLARING OUT YOUR ELBOWS

Another common mistake with the V Bar triceps extension occurs when you flare out your elbows.

Flaring the elbows to the side will allow your chest to take over and will change the mechanics of the workout into a jack-hammer-like motion.

This will prevent you from enjoying the exercise’s benefits. Ensure to position your elbows close to your body. This will improve your form as you perform the movement.

CURLING THE WRIST

Many athletes attempting the V Bar triceps pushdown prefer to curl their wrists when performing the exercise.

While they aim to trick their bodies into performing a more ‘complete’ rep, they miss on the exercise’s benefits because curling the wrists reduces tension in the triceps.

Instead, it will transfer the stress to the wrists and may lead to wrist injuries. Avoid curling your wrists and ensure they stay neutral throughout the workout.

CONCLUSION

The V Bar triceps pushdown is an effective exercise for bodybuilding and a stronger triceps. It is easy to do and presents few risks to the body.

Compared to its alternatives, such as the skull crusher, it is safer and easier to perform. It is a gender-neutral exercise and is suitable for everyone. Try it out.

 

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