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best back workouts

Can’t figure out how to get that back bigger? You’re fit everywhere else, just not seeing any improvements in that old back of yours.

Well don’t worry, this article will help you bulk up that back and “bring sexy back” (no pun intended).

Get ready to read about the most amazing back workouts out there! This article will tell you about the BEST back workouts created.  Here, we are going to breakdown these awesome exercises so you know just what to do at the gym next time you go. There are a lot of things to think about, like the perfect amount of reps and sets that will beef up that back. Let’s get into the best training tips for you and the best way to gain muscle in your back.

First of all, let’s talk about why it’s important to have a strong, healthy back. We actually use our backs more than you think. Whether it’s lifting objects, sitting, standing or even coughing and sneezing! Crazy huh?

Overall, it will make your day to day life easier. The three muscle groups in your back are Latissimus Dorsi, Erector Spinae and Rhomboids. The Latissimus Dorsi muscles are located on the sides of the back, Erector Spinae helps mainly with the lower back but also works down to the buttocks and neck. Rhomboids are made up of muscles that go between the shoulder blades and help with elevation, rotation and retraction.

The main exercises that work out your back include bent over rows, kneeling bench dumbell one arm rows, reverse fly’s, dead lifts and seated rows. 

It’s very important not to ignore your back muscles when training. If you don’t train your back, you could get seriously injured or even have back problems later down the line. Nobody wants that, right? 

Do I Need To Have A “Back Day?”

There are so many people who go in to the gym and focus on their arms or chest, without even thinking about the back or stretching it properly. Nobody wants to be that guy who drops his keys, bends over and can’t get up… so, it’s important to know how to train your back the safe way and also how to build muscle.

We know a lot of you like to train certain parts of your body one day and another part of your body the next. Like, Mondays and Wednesdays arms and abs, Tuesdays and Thursdays legs and cardio… well you get what we are talking about.

So, you think you’re going to see us tell you to do a “back day?”

Well, sorry to let you down…

 It won’t help you gain muscle in your back and is not very good for your back muscles in general.

I’m sure you’ve heard that bodybuilders to a “back day” at least once a week. Sorry to burst your bubble, but this is BS. When you’re reading about bulking up a certain body part, you generally are told to do 100 sets that focuses on that one specific area. This only works for those who use steroids.

So let’s think about it. Instead of having a “back day”, it is best to have an “upper body day”. This will give your body a good work out and it won’t be too harsh on your back. After all, there’s nothing worse than waking up with a sore back after an intense work out the day before.

If you are a beginner, it’s best to start your “upper body day” at just two times a week. The volume should be about 3-8 sets per workout along with 5-8 reps or 8-12 reps for those of you who aren’t beginners.

This is the best thing that you can do so that you can build up those muscles in your back. After all, everyone likes  a strong, firm back to look at.

back workout for men

 

The Best Back Exercises…

So, stay away from those fancy popular workouts that are telling you that its okay to focus on just your back when you’re working out. Like we said before, this is mainly for those people who are using steroids.

We’ve all seen those ads from companies that say that this is the “best” workout for your back, or follow this workout to get a bigger back the fastest.  

Sorry to burst your bubble, but you aren’t going to see that here…

Like we said before, it is best to add to your workout plan “upper body days” or “pull days”, because let’s be honest, it can be difficult getting that back looking like you want it.

Here is how we can help you. Lets remember that your back muscles are very important and we don’t want you hurting yourself or overdoing it. One tip we can tell you is when it comes to pull-ups and lat pull-downs, it’s a good idea to do this workout on both vertical and horizontal positions. If you follow this tip, you will see results pretty fast.

Another tip we have for you so that you can build a bigger back, is that by doing pull-ups/chin ups will give you the same results as to when you use the lat pull-down machine. These workouts are both equally good for gaining strength in your back, so don’t believe what other people tell you.

Now let’s talk about rows.

Whether you are working out with t-bar rows, dumbbell rows, seated cable rows, barbell rows, Hammer Strength machine rows, inverted rows, chest supported rows or whatever else you do… it’s all the same. Yep, they all will help you grow those back muscles.

There are many details you probably want to know when it comes to what type of exercise you should do. Stuff like “Should I do vertical or horizontal position?”, “What type of grip is best… overhand, underhand or neutral..?” or “Line of pull? Pulling to your hips, upper stomach, chest, lower/mid stomach..?”

What Is The Best Back Exercise For Me?

Since all of these exercises will give your body the same results, there are other things to think about…

You really should choose the type of workout that is best for you by thinking about:

  • The ones you actually like doing.
  • Any injuries you have had in the past.
  • Which ones you are best at and which one you are seeing progress.
  • Your form. (It’s very important to have good form so you don’t hurt yourself).

This is what really matters. It’s important to listen to your body.

Alright, So What Is The Point Of This Article…?

This may surprise you but when it comes to building a bigger back, it’s all about what you are doing WHILE you are training your back.

What Are Our Building a Bigger Back Tips?

Tip #1: Actually Use Your Back

The issue is that many people who think that they are training their back muscles (such as lats, rhomboids, traps, etc) are failing to do so…

Why do you ask? It’s most likely because…

  1. They have bad form. If your form isn’t good when you are training your back then you are most likely working other muscle groups like lower back or biceps… which obviously doesn’t help your back.
  2. They are using weights that are too heavy for them to handle. This can be dangerous because you could easily injure yourself if you use a weight that is too heavy for you. Make sure you do your research before working out so that you are safe about using the amount of weight that works for you and your body type.
  3. Your mind isn’t communicating with your muscles. We are talking about when you see people who are “in the zone” during a workout… yep they are focused and concentrated on their workout which is very important.

How to Fix #1 and #2?

Let’s be honest, we see #1 and #2 EVERYWHERE!

We’ve all seen this at the gym. Don’t be mad, you know what we’re talking about… when lat pull-downs look more like some tricep push downs… bent over rows look like deadlifts… kicking  your legs up to get above the bar when doing pull-ups…etc.

Think about it, it’s simple. If you see yourself throwing, jerking, pulling or swinging the weight, then you are clearly letting gravity take control instead of using your muscles. You’re not only cheating but you’re cheating yourself.  While this is highly entertaining to watch, it will get you nowhere.  

So don’t be the bro at the gym who’s putting on a show. When you walk into the gym, leave your ego at the door. It is way better to have good form and to use the right weights, than it is trying to impress other people.

Now let’s look more into fixing #3.

You need to pay attention to your elbows, chest, lower back and shoulders. A lot of the time people are pulling with their biceps and not working their back muscles like they should. Of course, your biceps need to do some work when you are doing “pulling” workouts.

This might take some time, but here’s how to make it easier on you.

What you need to do first is focus on the position of your back during every exercise. The “back-muscle-recruiting position” means chest up, shoulders back and allow a small arch in your lower back.

Next, use your mind. Don’t think about what the weights are doing, what your hands are doing or what the bar/handles are doing.

The secret is to think about what your elbows are doing.  Look at your hands like hooks and think about pulling with your elbows. Basically, think like the weight is behind your elbows.

So, don’t think about pulling weight with your hands, think of it like you are using your elbows to push the weight behind you. Like when you are doing a pull-up, think of the weight being under your elbows and your elbows are what is pushing the weight down.

Does that make sense?

Tip #2: Grip And Squeeze

Are you one of those people who have a sucky form?  Are you using more weight than you should be? Are you unable to feel your back muscles truly working?

stretching your back workouts

Here’s a simple yet awesome tip: Grip and Squeeze

When you are working out your back, at the end of each rep, hold that position for one second and just squeeze your muscles. Focus on the muscles in your mid and upper back section and just SQUEEZE.

Next,  use the same muscles to control the weight once it goes back to the starting position.

After each rep, grip, and squeeze… for all of your sets and any workout, that has to do with your back. This tip will help your back if you’ve ever had any soreness after a workout  the next day. So you’re welcome.  Also- for those of you who try to show off at the gym, if you can’t hold that grip and squeeze then guess what! You are probably using too much weight! So simmer down.

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Conclusion

Make sure you have chosen the right work out for you. Nothing too easy and nothing to extreme. Be honest with yourself and listen to your body. When thinking about the best workout plan for you, think about the ideal amount of frequency, volume, and intensity.  DO NOT OVERLOAD YOURSELF. 

So let’s recap.  In order to build a better back, you need to have a good form, use weights that aren’t too heavy for yourself (be real), use you mind and get in the zone and last but not least, remember to grip and squeeze.

Remember to stretch your back as well before and after your workout. This will help you gain muscle and improve your flexibility. Also, you won’t feel those sore muscles the next day after a hard workout.

So go ahead and build up that back! And of course, don’t forget to keep up that healthy diet too!

-Henry F

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