Build A Strong Back And Improve Your Posture With Weight Training

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Are you looking to build your back muscles and improve your posture? Watch this video and I’ll take you through a weight training workout to help build a strong back

Hello. It’s Ivana helping you get fit, healthy and strong at any age.

I’m a certified strength and conditioning specialist and I’ve been a natural bodybuilder for over 25 years. I’m also an Online Coach helping people get fit, healthy and strong.

Building a strong back does it need to be complicated, but you do need to hit all aspects of the back, so it’s not just about the lats. There are other muscles in the back.

Even though the lats are the strong ones, we see them as the largest muscle in the back.

You also have your upper and your lower traps that you want to take care of, and there’s also the rhomboids, which are between your shoulder blades. Although they’re retracting the shoulders back, they retract the scapula back.

That gives you really good posture and it’s part of the appearance of the strong upper back.

build-a-strong-back-and-improve-your-posture-with-weight-training

You also have the rear delts in there. That’s the back end of your shoulders and that’s going to give you that nice V taper look as well when you’re looking from behind.

Stick around to the end of the video where I’m going to summarize the entire workout plan for you.

Chin-up Exercise

We’re going to start off with the chin up.

This is a very challenging exercise, but it’s probably the best one for your back and it helps develop your strength throughout the lats.

You’re also going to get some bicep work here.

Ideally you’re coming all the way down to a dead hang. Then you’re pulling it up with your chin over top of the bar.

Chin-up With A Band

If a regular chin-up is too challenging for you, and it is for a lot of people, so don’t feel bad, one of the ways that you can still do a chin-up is with a band, so you’re using the band to support some of your weight in this video on using just a fairly small amount of assistance. I think the band is about 15 pounds of assistance, but you can get thicker ones that will give you a little bit more assistance, so you want to go through and use the same technique.

Assisted Chin-up Machine

The third option is the assisted chin-up, which is sometimes called the gravitron machine. If you happen to have this at your gym, that’s great to me, I don’t like this one as much because the position tends to change a little bit because you’re supported at the knees, but if it’s the only option you have, then certainly use the machine. Make sure that you set your weights up so that you only have the amount of assistance that you absolutely need for that rep range. The next exercise is reverse flys and I really liked this one for the area between the shoulder blades and for the rear delts at the back of your shoulders.

So try to keep this movement as slow and controlled as possible using the right weight for you.

Straight Arm Pushdown

And now we come to the straight arm pushed down, sometimes called the pull down. The key of with this exercise is to bend over slightly so that you’ve got enough range of motion on the left.

Make sure that you’re maintaining your lumbar spine in a neutral position. So that’s a little bit of a curve in your back. And then keep your elbow straight throughout the movement. And don’t bend your wrist.

It’s a controlled motion down and then back up again.

Seated Row Exercise

And now we’re onto the seated row. You’re gonna make sure that your knees are a little bit bent, your lower back is arched slightly and your chest is lifted up.

You want to keep this slow and controlled.

We’re going for the narrow grip here. I’m using a D handle and then squeezing the shoulders together at the back.

Y Raise

The last exercise is the Y raise and this targets an area that a lot of people overlook – the lower traps.

In order to isolate the lower traps a little bit, we’re going to try to retract the scapula (the shoulder blades) back slightly before we do the lift of the arms in front.

And as you come up, you want to maintain a straight as possible for your elbow. So for most people, this is going to require quite a lightweight. This weight that I’m using here might even be a little bit on the heavy side for me. You want to keep it controlled up and then down as well.

Please let me know in the comments what you thought of that workout.

Was it challenging enough for you?

Do you think you’re going to be able to make progress?

Can you do a chin up?

And I also want to summarize the entire program for you. So those are the exercises that we’ve gone through and the reps and sets that I recommend for this particular program. Hopefully this works out for you.

Ivana Chapman

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Ivana Chapman

Ivana Chapman

Ivana Chapman BSc BA CSCS is a Canadian fitness and nutrition coach, happy wife, and mom to an energetic 6-year-old boy. She is a writer, published fitness model, speaker, 3rd Dan black belt in Shotokan Karate, former World Cup Karate Champion, one-time marathoner, and CBBF National level Natural Bikini competitor. She loves weight training and chocolate, not always in that order of preference.
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