When to Use It

Do this on an upper-body day after you’ve completed all your working sets. The volume will tax your entire upper back and shoulders, making it difficult to press or pull for the remainder of your training session.

Why Do It

“Muscular fatigue is what leads to noticeable changes in someone’s physique and strength,” says David Otey, C.S.C.S., the personal trainer manager for Equinox in New York City. And this ladder, designed by Otey, has you doing 120 reps (assuming you do two rounds) of extra shoulder and back work to spark immense growth over time. Also, Otey says that face-pulls—whether done on a TRX (as shown here) or with a cable rope attachment—improve your shoulder-joint mobility and help counteract that slouched-over, computer-jockey posture by forcing you to retract your shoulder blades with each pull.


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Get It Done

Think of it as one set. Descend the ladder, taking 20 seconds of rest between microsets. Once you reach the end, climb back up the ladder until you’re back at 10 reps. Aim to complete two sets.

The Workout

TRX Face-Pull: 5 sets of 10, 8, 6, 4, 2; rest 20 sec. in between each microset

Pro Tip: “Turn your biceps inward at the top of the movement for more biceps activation,” says Otey. “Or keep your palms down to focus fully on your rear delts.”

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