By Praveen & Maahek Nair
We must not forget about the back muscles. “They are so important for general posture.” A weak back causes bad posture and slouching, which can lead to a tight anterior chain the muscles in the front of your body. This muscular imbalance can result in a host of problems like breathing issues, lack of mobility and back pain. That’s critical, since approximately 80 percent of adults will struggle with low back pain during their lifetime. Fortunately, strength training which builds muscle and bone mass can help reduce your risk of back problems and other injuries. Compared to isolation exercises, which only target one muscle think biceps curls, compound movements work multiple muscle groups.
Compound exercises also burn more calories since they involve more muscles. Multi-joint movements also improve your coordination, cardiovascular fitness and flexibility, compound exercises are functional. That means they prepare your body for the physical demands of daily life. For example, a squat press can train your muscles for bending and lifting a child. When it comes to the back, which is comprised of many muscles, it’s almost impossible to work one
muscle in isolation. “Most back exercises are compound movements, which is great because it means we are getting more muscle engagement.”
So, you can do movements that target the lats, upper and lower back, but your hips, legs, shoulders and arms are going to get worked, too.
The Compound Movements for Back Muscles : –
Each Sets: – 3-4 | Each Reps: – 12-15
Bent Over Row: –
Weight-training exercises provide an opportunity to elevate fitness levels, contributing to improved health. By providing resistance for muscles to overcome, strength training yields benefits such as increased muscle mass and bone health. Specific exercises, such as bent-over rows, work several muscle groups, leading to improved muscular strength and endurance. When combined with cardio training and proper nutrition, a leaner, more toned physique is the result. Increased strength means a decreased risk of injury and illness.
Bent-over rows strengthen muscles in your upper back, including the latissimus dorsi and rhomboids. With weight training, muscles exert force to overcome resistance with or without movement. Resistance can be in the form of free weights, weight machines, bodyweight or gravity. Bent-over rows utilize free weights and gravity as resistance with movement.
How to perform: –
- Hinge forward at your hips. Pull a weighted barbell toward your torso while keeping your elbows close to your body and your back straight.
- Perform sets of six to 12 repetitions, performing each set to muscle failure to improve muscular strength and endurance.
One Arm Dumbbell Row: –
The one-arm dumbbell row is a good addition to any dumbbell workout. This movement targets the upper and lower back, shoulders, biceps, and hips while improving core stability. Five different joint actions take place in this compound exercise. Beginners can use light weights as they build strength. The main muscle group worked during the single-arm row is the latissimus dorsi (lats). You also engage the entire back, shoulders, and arms (the trapezius, rhomboids,
teres major and minor, deltoids, infraspinatus, biceps, brachialis, brachioradialis, and even pecs). By focusing on one arm at a time, you can better isolate the lats and lift the weight higher than during a classic barbell row.
By placing your free hand on your thigh, or another stable surface, you are also able to lift more weight, but keep in mind that the goal of the one-arm row is to reach the maximum range of motion of the movement rather than simply lifting heavier weights. Keeping your free hand supported on your thigh gives you just enough support to help stabilize your spine and upper body, and allows you to concentrate on slow, controlled movements.
How to perform:
- Stand to the right of your weight bench, holding a dumbbell in your right hand with your palm facing in.
- Place your left knee and your left hand on top of the bench for support.
- Let your right arm hang down and a bit forward.
- Pull your abdominals in and bend forward from the hips so that your back is naturally arched and roughly parallel to the floor, and your right knee is slightly bent.
- Tilt your chin toward your chest so that your neck is in line with the rest of your spine.
- Pull your right arm up until your elbow is pointing to the ceiling, your upper arm is parallel to the floor, and your hand comes to the outside of the ribcage.
- Lower the weight slowly back down.
Pull Ups: –
A pull-up is an upper body strength training exercise. The pullup is one of the most effective exercises for strengthening the back muscles. Pullups work the following muscles of the back. Pullups also strengthen the arm and shoulder muscles. By performing pullups regularly, you’ll work the forearms and shoulders. If you’re looking to improve your strength in these areas, you should perform pullups regularly. If you can’t perform the full pullup, doing them assisted or just getting in the position (hanging from the bar) can increase your strength as you work up to the complete movement.
Pullups also help improve grip strength. Grip strength is important if you lift weights. It also can improve performance in many sports like golf, tennis, rock climbing, and bowling.
In your everyday life, a strong grip is also important for performing tasks like opening jars, walking your dog on a leash, carrying groceries, and shoveling snow. Pullups are a challenging strength training exercise. Challenging your muscles with difficult moves can improve your overall fitness level, too. If you haven’t done pullups before, adding them to your routine may improve how strong you feel and look.
If you do the same exercises over and over, your body can start to plateau after a while. But by adding in new and challenging exercises like pullups, you may see great improvement in your strength.
How to perform:
- To perform a pullup, you start by hanging onto a pullup bar with your palms facing away from you and your body extended fully.
- You then pull yourself up until your chin is above the bar. Pullups are different than a chin-up.
- With a chin-up, your palms and hands face toward you.
If you have a desk job, you likely spend a big part of your day with your neck pitched forward, your shoulders slumped, and your eyes focused on a screen in front of you. Over time, this posture can take quite a toll on your neck and shoulder muscles. Fortunately, there are exercises you can do to relieve muscle tension in your neck, shoulders, and upper back.
Shoulder shrugs are a popular choice of exercise for strengthening your shoulder muscles and upper arms too.
Shoulder shrugs can be done anywhere and only take a few minutes. Even better, shoulder shrugs are perfect for most fitness levels and can be modified for different levels of strength.
The main muscles that shoulder shrugs target are the trapezius muscles. These muscles are located on either side of your neck. They control the movement of your shoulder blades as well as your upper back and neck. When these muscles are strengthened through exercise, you will have an easier time maintaining proper posture. A strong trapezius pulls your shoulders back and helps stabilize your neck and upper back. Everyday movements such as lifting, reaching,
bending, and even sitting are more efficient and safer when your trapezius muscles are toned and strong. Working these muscles may also help you with other fitness exercises, such as lifting barbells.
How to perform:
- Start with your feet flat on the floor, in a standing position. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart. With your arms at your sides, turn your palms to face each other.
- If you’re doing the exercise with weights, bend down and grab them now. Bend your knees slightly so that they line up with your toes. Keep your chin up, facing straight ahead, and your neck straight.
- While you inhale, bring your shoulders as high up toward your ears as you can. Do the movement slowly so that you feel the resistance of your muscles. Lower your shoulders back down and breathe out before repeating the movement