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Daniel Andonov

Front Lever - Triceps or Lat dominant?

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Daniel Andonov

Hello.My question is, as far as upper body in FL, which muscles play a bigger role?Lats or Triceps.When I try to transition from 1/2 to Straddle my arms just cant hold the position.Although I dont know if I have the lat strenght too, but I feel like my triceps is giving up first.

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Everett Carroll

Hey Daniel,

Lats are a bigger muscle so they play more of a role in maintaining the position. It is common for smaller muscles to fatigue earlier than larger ones, especially if they have not been conditioned properly. This is a weak link that is addressed thoroughly in the Foundation courses. 

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Daniel Andonov

Ok, Thanks for the answer!

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Alessandro Mainente

It is a bit impossible to say what is dominant, because if I take off from your body the triceps you will never lift from an hang.

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Francesco Pudda

Well, it could be done by placing some electrodes in specific positions. I remember a study post in this forum about muscles activation during pullups with different grips. It could be very interesting to have such studies for other movements and/or isometrics

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Daniel Andonov
20 hours ago, Alessandro Mainente said:

It is a bit impossible to say what is dominant, because if I take off from your body the triceps you will never lift from an hang.

Actually I position myself to a FL from inverted hang

1 minute ago, Francesco Pudda said:

Well, it could be done by placing some electrodes in specific positions. I remember a study post in this forum about muscles activation during pullups with different grips. It could be very interesting to have such studies for other movements and/or isometrics

Yeah, that would be great.Bret Contreras do a lot of similar researches, but with free weights.

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Coach Sommer

For front lever work the lats are dominant and the triceps are secondary.

If your triceps are failing, it is because the long head of your triceps lacks sufficient strength.  However this has nothing whatsoever to do with which of the muscle groups is dominant.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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Daniel Andonov

Thanks for the answer coach!I guess I need more L-Sit, Manna, Reverse plank leans variations, to work the long head in a straight arm position.

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Alessandro Mainente

The exercises you mentioned are not specific because the movement pattern it is completely different. Long head tricep must be progressively prepared and trained specifically for the front lever as the Long work showed in foundations shows.

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Daniel Andonov

I know the foundations, and thanks, no, I`m not interested.I was just curiuos about the two muscles involved in FL :)

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Daniel Andonov

Also I have another question about the scapula position in FL.In the recent thread, in regard to this topic , Coach said shoulders must be depressed and protracted.I saw also Zach Armijo in his instagram profile saying shoulders must be PROTRACTED, but more importantly wide.There are a lot of other figures in the fitness world who teach FL with RETRACTED shoulders, and these people actually can do FL.Even one famous, a little controversial figure(wont say his name, you know it) teach FL that way.My question is, why there is such distinction between the learning methods about FL.One says retracted, other protracted.I am confused.

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Coach Sommer

Hi Daniel,

It is literally impossible to perform a front lever with the scapula fully retracted.  

This is easily verified.  Stand up straight and retract the scaps fully until they pinch together.  Now try to contract the lats.  Can't be done.

What they are trying to describe is that the scaps needs to pressed out wide and partially protracted.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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Alessandro Mainente
4 hours ago, Coach Sommer said:

Hi Daniel,

It is literally impossible to perform a front lever with the scapula fully retracted.  

This is easily verified.  Stand up straight and retract the scaps fully until they pinch together.  Now try to contract the lats.  Can't be done.

What they are trying to describe is that the scaps needs to pressed out wide and partially protracted.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

I would add that from the thousand people teaching the retracted front lever NO ONES can perform it with retracted scapuale.

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