Tricep Pushdown is a great exercise for working your triceps. It’s simple to do and can be done with either free weights or a machine. Here’s how to do it the right way:
Sit down at a weight machine and select the weight you want to use.
Position the pulley at shoulder height and grasp the handle with your palms facing each other.
Step back from the machine, keeping your back pressed firmly against the pad and your feet flat on the floor.
Contract your abs and glutes and slowly lower the weight until your arms are fully extended.
Pause for a moment, then slowly contract your triceps to lift the weight back to the starting position.
Repeat for the desired number of reps.
Switch arms and repeat all steps.
If you are using free weights, grasp a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing forward and stand with your arms extended at shoulder height in front of you, knees slightly bent to absorb any possible impact from the weights swinging back after each rep (This is more important if the tricep pushdowns are part of a weight lifting routine.)
Bend your elbows slightly (Maintain this slight bend throughout the entire exercise) bringing your hands toward your shoulders while maintaining full contact between your forearms and upper arm (elbow joint).
Pause briefly then slowly straighten your arms to return to the starting position.
Repeat for the desired number of reps, then switch arms and repeat all steps.
If you don’t have a weight machine or prefer free weights, grab a set of dumbbells and get in front of a bench, step, or box that is about knee height. Grasping a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing forward, lean over from your hips keeping your back straight until it is nearly parallel with the floor (or as low as you can go). Bend your elbows slightly bringing your hands toward the side of your head while maintaining full contact between your forearms and upper arm (elbow joint), pause briefly then slowly straighten to return to starting position. Repeat for the desired number of reps.
Biggest Mistakes People Usually Make:
The biggest mistakes people make while doing tricep pushdowns are:
Using too much weight, which can cause you to use poor form and increase your risk of injury. It’s important to use a weight that you can control and that allows you to maintain good form throughout the entire exercise.
Not allowing their upper arms (front of the shoulders) to fully contact their forearms at the bottom of the movement. This is extremely important! If they don’t, then they are most likely using momentum instead of actual tricep strength.
Performing the movement too fast, can also lead to injury due to lack of control or improper form. They should be controlled but not sluggish, remember good form takes time and at first this movement may be difficult.
Using too much body English. This is also a sign that they are using momentum and not actual strength or good form/technique. Be sure to use a full range of motion and control the weight on both the way up and down (inhale and exhale).
If you struggle with these pushdowns, start by practicing against an immovable object like a wall until you get stronger; make sure to maintain perfect form while doing so! Practice makes perfect after all.