Are Heavy or Lighter Lat Pull Downs Better?

It is considered a compound exercise since the lat pulldown traverses numerous joints and involves more than one muscle group. It is a terrific option if you’re looking to target muscle groups that the Big …

It is considered a compound exercise since the lat pulldown traverses numerous joints and involves more than one muscle group. It is a terrific option if you're looking to target muscle groups that the Big Four don't cover. 

Using compound workouts instead of isolation exercises will help you burn more calories in a shorter period. You can also perform this exercise in your home if you have a well-equipped home gym. Also, if you're looking for the best half racks for your home gym, you can visit our guide about the best half racks for your home gym.

I like to remark that it gives you a good return on your investment (outcome) (effort). This workout requires a lat pulldown machine found in most gyms. A long bar hanging above the user's head connects to a weight stack, and while there are many distinct models with slight variations, most all have the same basic design. 

Is the lat pulldown supposed to hit your chest when you do it? You sit on a seat and pull a barbell toward you as you perform this exercise. In this article, we will discuss whether you should do lighter or heavy Lat Pull Downs:

How can One Perform the Lat Pull Downs Exercise?

a woman performing a lat pull down exercise
a woman performing a lat pull down exercise

Place your feet firmly on the floor and relax on the pulldown seat. Check the bar's height. Adjusting the bar height may necessitate changing the chain or cable that holds the bar in place and adjusting your seat height. Consider hiring a personal trainer at your local gym if you need assistance with this. 

At a height where your arms can quickly grasp the bar without standing up, but you can still extend your arms so that you can do a full range of motion, the bar should be at the ideal height. You should snugly tuck the thighs under the thigh pad if one is provided. You'll benefit from this when you put some work into the bar.

Steps to Perform Lat Pull Downs:

  • Use an overhand, knuckles-up grip with a comprehensive hold on the bar. Other grips and positions are possible, but this is an excellent place to start.
  • Pull the bar toward your chin until it's at or near your chin level. Take a deep breath out and exhale it slowly and steadily. While a small amount of backward movement is OK, keep your upper torso still. Keep your feet on the ground and engage your abs as you pull. When you get to the bottom of the motion, your elbows should be unable to travel any further down without going backward. The point at which you should stop and not go any lower is here.
  • Maintaining a square shoulder, squeeze the shoulder blades together.
  • Slowly return the bar to the beginning position, keeping it near to your chin while regulating the bar's ascent. Make sure it doesn't hit the weight plates.
  • Keep going until you've completed eight to twelve sets of repetitions. After a short break, go on with your workout routine.

You can also perform alternate back exercises such as Deadlift and Rowing if you feel discomfort doing Lat Pull Downs.

Categories of Lat Pull Downs

It is essential to consider your current level of experience and strength when discussing the optimal weight for lat pulldown since this will assist in establishing how much you can safely hold. To make an informed choice below is a quick explanation of the categories.

  • Beginner Lifter 
  • Novice Lifter 
  • Intermediate Lifter 
  • Advanced Lifter 
  • Elite Lifter

How much Weight Should Men and Women Lift?

When executing a lat pulldown, you must select an appropriate weight. If you go too heavy, too fast, you put yourself at risk of injury and affect your form. To get the most out of your workout, you need to do it correctly.

For a lat pulldown, you must consider your body weight and training experience to get the best results. If you're under the age of 18 or above 35, it will be less than half your body weight.

With practice, you should be able to lift more, as shown in the table below. The calculation is the same for women, but beginners can lift only around 30% of their body weight. As you gain experience and skill, your ability to do this will improve.

The following is a rough suggestion for men and women on how much weight they should lift. Following this advice is vital to get the most out of your workout.

Weight Chart for Men

Bodyweight Beginner (Lbs.)Intermediate (Lbs.)Advanced (Lbs.)
110 Lbs. 53 125 174 
120 Lbs. 59 135 186 
130 Lbs. 65 144 197 
140 Lbs. 71 153 207 
150 Lbs. 77 162 217 
160 Lbs. 83 170 227 
170 Lbs. 88 178 236 
190 Lbs. 99 193 253 
200 Lbs. 104 200 261 
210 Lbs. 109 207 269 
220 Lbs. 114 214 277 
230 Lbs. 119 220 284 
240 Lbs. 123 226 291 

Weight Chart for Women

Bodyweight Beginner (Lbs.)Intermediate (Lbs.)Advanced (Lbs.)
90 Lbs. 3181 114 
100 Lbs. 3485 119 
110 Lbs. 37 89 124 
120 Lbs. 39 93 129 
130 Lbs. 41 96 133 
140 Lbs. 44 99 137 
150 Lbs. 46 102 140 
160 Lbs. 48 105 144 
170 Lbs. 50 108 147 
180 Lbs. 51111 150 
190 Lbs. 53113 153 
200 Lbs. 55116 156 
210 Lbs. 56118 159 

Should you use Lesser Weight or Heavier Weights?

People often attempt to lift weights that are far too heavy on the lat pulldown machine, which is something I see a lot. I can tell it's too heavy because they have to sway their torso backward to push the weight past their chin. After all, it's too hefty to pull straight down.

The goal of a lat pulldown is to increase the size of your lats while also building muscle in your serratus anterior. Using the wrong muscles and weakening the muscles you're supposed to be training is a big concern with rocking backward. 

You will not build a comprehensive, muscular back by doing this exercise wrong. Lat pulldowns are more effective when the weight is reduced. So, avoid doing the heavy lat pulldown when performing this exercise.

How much Average weight is lifting doing Lat Pulldowns?

Lat pulldown machines should include weight plates that increase by 5 pounds or 5 kilograms at a time so that you may pick the ideal weight for your body type. Weight, gender, and overall strength all affect how much weight an individual can lift on average, but you may expect this number to rise as you exercise.

Beginners should aim for a lat pulldown weight of 84 pounds (38 kilograms), while advanced lifters could aim for up to 250 pounds (113 kilograms). A good lat pulldown weighs about 43 pounds (20 kilograms); it can weigh up to 150 pounds for seasoned lifters.


If you want to get the most out of your workout, you must use the proper amount of weight. An excellent compound exercise for building upper body strength, use lighter weights and practice good form to get the maximum results from lat pulldowns. 

If you want to buy the best cable pulley for your home gym, visit our guide, “Best Home Gym Cable Pulley Systems.” Using the information in this article, you should be able to figure out where to begin your weight loss journey and where to go from there.