- Keeping the back straight, pull the bar down to about chin level or a little lower in a smooth movement while squeezing the shoulder blades together.
- Try not to force the bar any lower than where the shoulders are naturally collapsed and the forearms are more or less upright. You should not push the arms forward out of the vertical plane in order to drag the bar lower.
- Slowly return the bar to full height and repeat the exercise.
- When your set is finished, don't suddenly release the bar and clash the weights. Stand up in order to settle the weights without clashing if necessary.
- Don't sway too far back when pulling down. A little way is okay in order to fit the bar under the chin but don't sway back to get it lower. This is an exercise for the back and lats and not the arms.
- Don't pull down behind the neck. For several reasons this could be dangerous. The shoulder and neck joints may end up in positions in which they are vulnerable to injury. More experienced trainers may practise this exercise but many don't.
One exercise to go in my top ten: the crunch.
If you need to, check out the top ten list and the basic training and safety information.