The snatch-grip rack pull, from mid-shin height, is one of the best movements for back size.
The Snatch-Grip Rack Pull
The wider grip puts significantly more stress on the upper back, traps, and rear delts, while pulling from the pins with the bar elevated a few inches off the floor allows for heavier loading. The wider your grip, the harder it'll be. If you have blocks, use those. If not, just go as wide as you can in the power rack.
Using a wider grip effectively increases the range of motion of the lift, so a snatch-grip rack pull from a few inches off the floor is approximately equivalent to a conventional deadlift from the floor. When the bar is at mid-shin level, the bottom of the plates will be just a few inches off the floor. That's it. Don't let your ego get in the way and start pulling from the knees just so you can throw more wheels on the bar.
- Reset after each rep to keep your form in check.
- Think about keeping your chest up to avoid rounding your back. With a super-wide grip, you won't actually be able to keep your chest up to any great extent, but thinking about it will at least ensure you keep a safe back position.
- You'll definitely want to use straps on these because holding the bar is way harder with a snatch grip; otherwise you'll be significantly limited by grip strength. Our main goal here is back development, so don't sweat using straps.
- Start light if you've never tried this before. Really light!