Proper back development is essential for giving you a well balanced physique, however if you want good symmetry, you need to be focusing on the correct contractions & exercises. The best back development exercises revolve heavily around compound & isolation movement.
Having a strong & toned back doesn’t just look great, it’s a sign you will have great posture throughout your life. Getting older can produce a host of problems with hunching forwards & becoming more susceptible to osteoporosis which causes you to be become weaker.
Adding resistance based training, specifically compound movement exercises can decrease the risks of osteoporosis & build your lean body mass, strength and keep your posture in check throughout your entire life. Let’s get started into the first recommended back exercise!
1# Barbell Deadlifts
The barbell deadlift has no competition with other exercises when it comes to the most well-rounded posterior compound development movement. Because of the large amount of posterior muscles being utilised from your calf muscles all the way up to the trapezius muscles, the deadlift is considered the king of all exercises.
And when it comes to your back development, the deadlift works to thicken your back and develop complete body strength. The deadlift is also an excellent exercise for developing your posture chain while minimising bone density reduction / lean body mass with age.
2# Bent Over Barbell Rows
Coming in second, there was no hesitation in choosing bent over barbell rows. As with deadlifts it’s important to ensure you have the correct form & technique before adding this exercise into your routine.
Bent over-rows are a great addition to a hypertrophy & strength rep / set range, which is incorporated into the most effective training programs.
It’s important to not overload the weight in the beginning stages of this exercise, the movement puts a lot of weight & force on the lumbar region, for this reason a weight belt is also recommended.
3# Wide Grip Lat Pulldown
Rather than developing thickness of the back, the wide grip lat pulldown works specifically on giving you a wider look targeting the latissimus dorsi muscle (specifically upper side region).
The change in grip with a wider angle allows for a higher target of your lats, this gives whats called a “V-taper” look, where you can see in fitness or bodybuilding competitions.
However, rest assured ladies, with your low testosterone levels and physiology differences from a man, your back won’t develop into the “hulk” anytime soon.
4# Rope Face Pulls
Face pulls are incredibly under-rated in the fitness industry, yet so important! The contraction is highly effective with building upper back thickness, but more important this exercise improves overall posture & shoulder health.
This exercise will develop your trapezius muscles, rear deltoids and rhomboids. If you’re someone who sits in front of a computer screen every day for work or you notice that your shoulders roll forward, then face pulls will balance and correct this problem.
5# Straight-Arm Pulldown
Straight-arm pulldowns are another great exercise yet overlooked by many trainers in the fitness industry. When performed correctly this exercise will develop the overall lats increasing width & your posterior deltoids. Although the posterior deltoids will get involved through the contraction, the main muscles utilized will be your lats.
Depending on your height and body type, you will need to experiment a little with your ideal position when performing this exercise. Focus on a slow and controlled contraction and utilize mind muscle connection through the exercise.
Wrapping Everything Up!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this blog, I’ve been incorporating these same exercises into my own exercises and my clients for years. If you’re serous about developing all ares of your back, while improving posture, you can’t go without these key exercises.
If you’re looking for all in one program which includes these exercises and teaches you exactly how to train correctly through hypertrophy, strength and endurance phased training, you definitely want to check out the 28 Mind & Body Challenge. It’s currently discounted at 80% Off, so get in quick!