I don't think a simple measurement with a tape measure can justify that the actual rib structure has changed. Pullovers can stimulate the serratus to grow which would be included in such a measurement, and any growth in the latissimus Dorsi would also be represented in measuring below the pectorials.Originally posted by ExtremeAnabolic
Well...there are two schools of thought on this subject. The old school claims the cartilage connecting the rib cage itself and to the sternum is made of a slightly different kind of cartilage. It is apparently more pliable (especially when you are young) and can be stretched somewhat. The newer school says the expansion is caused by the tissue (muscle tissue) in the area of the rib cage. I adhere to this newer theory. When I was younger I did heavy pullovers preceeded by breathing squats and eventually ended up with a three inch gain in the area of the rib cage. I measured under the pectorals so as not to throw off the measurement due to any size gain in the pecs.
At any rate, pullovers arn't a useless exercise, especially if they're done with a pullover machine.
I feel that DB pullovers are far superior to machine pullovers, but thats just in my experience. I have never noticed any kind of rib cage expansion---ever. But I have noticed thickening of my serratus muscles which would in turn make the pecs appear to be pertruding a little further, since the serratus run underneath the pecs to some degree. I feel that DB pullovers have really helped out my lats as well.
My issue with DB or BB lying pullovers is there isn't a constant resistnace on the lats. For me it's a very awkward movement that requires too much attention on form and balance. With a machine pullover the resistance is constant and you can really concentrate on having your lats take the brunt of the weight.
Just my experience.
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Dumbbell pullovers are definitely inferior to a properly performed machine pullover. As mentioned above, the dynamic of the motion with a dumbbell severely restricts the actual resistance throughout the majority of the ROM. A machine gives you resistance throughout the movement.
Well then I must be doing the exercise wrong, but I end up feeling the exercise in my serratus and my triceps. Not really in my lats at all. Its the standard Nautilus pullover machine.