Back Training: What Exercises Do You Need To Perform?
When it comes to back training many people fall short on this large muscle group for many different reasons. The first being that you can’t see your back when training it, which makes it harder to achieve that “mind muscle connection.”
The second is that you can’t really see your back when posing either, unless you have someone to take pictures of your back and view them after. This problem makes it harder to really focus on building it up to freak proportions.
This causes many bodybuilders to not give 100% intensity into this very large muscle group, and it all boils down to the fact that the bodybuilder cannot see it, so they figure why train it? And the worst part is about this scenario is that the bodybuilder’s back is usually the determining factor whether you place well or not at bodybuilding contests.
Just as an example look at the Mr. Olympia contest, Jay can’t touch Ronnie in the back department, and that is one of the main reasons as to why Ronnie will continue to hold the title for the seventh time leaving Jay to grab 2nd place.
Back is also one of the largest and complex muscle groups, which requires a high degree of focus and attention to detail while training it. When training back implementing a wide variety of exercises helps dramatically to make you back complete and well developed.
Separate Upper & Lower Back Exercises
What I mean by this concept is that when training the back you should start your workout focusing on the upper portion of your back (trapezius & latissimus dorsi), then moving on to the lower part of your back. I feel that this is a very good concept that many bodybuilders are beginning to use when training the back.
If you are using the deadlift in your back training I feel that these should be used in the early stages of your workout when you have the most energy to put into that compound exercise. When training upper back first, then moving on to lower back I do not feel you should use deadlifts at the end of your workout due to your energy output at this point.
When speaking of “upper back” the exercises that fall into this category are exercises that target that specific area of the back, mostly the lats and the upper middle portion of the back. So when picking exercises for the upper back you could choose from a wide range of high pulling exercises, pullovers, and pull-ups, exercises that work in this manner specifically target the upper portion of the back.
When speaking of specific “lower back” exercises you want to choose exercises that target the Christmas tree area (where the lower latissimus dorsi tie into the spinal erectors), and also the muscles that support the trunk area.
There are many power exercises that are used to target this area such as, deadlifts, heavy bent over rows, dumbbell rows, T-bar rows, incline bench rows, specific machines, low cable rows, and hyperextensions. All of these target one or multiple areas of the lower portion of the back.
In this article I will present a very effective back workout to specifically target the upper portion of the back during the beginning of the workout down to the lower portion of the back as the workout progresses
EXERCISE 1 Bent-arm barbell pullover
3-4 sets of 8-15 reps
By using this grip, I feel you can use heavier poundage while stimulating the back more efficiently opposed to the traditional way.
This machine works very well as a first exercise for a back routine because of how it stretches your whole upper body, especially the lats. I feel that this exercise serves as a good warm up exercise to get your back ready for heavy lat pull downs and bent rows.
This exercise should be preformed for 3-4 sets with reps ranging from 15 down to 8. These should be performed using maximum intensity striving to use the heaviest weights possible while staying in that range.