- Wide Grip Lat Pull-Downs | Back Exercises - Wide grip pull-downs serve as an alternative to pull-ups and are useful for all weight-lifters - beginner to advanced. Being able to adjust the weight is very useful because the beginner can reduce the weight lifted - if their own weight is too heavy for them to lift when doing pull-ups and the advanced lifter can increase the weight beyond their own body weight.
Most experts suggest that pull-ups are a superior exercise, so wide grip pull-downs should take back seat to pull-ups when possible.
A problem with pull-downs in general is that some users can't isolate the lats and end up using their biceps to do a lot of the work. To isolate the lats, use a wide grip and when you're pulling down, focus on your lats pulling inwards as they go down. Imagine them pulling down in a semi-circle motion. The wider grip promotes the width of the upper portion of the lats.