The “V” grip (close-grip) seated row is an excellent exercise for building the lats and mid back. The teres major, rhomboids, trapezius, and rear-delts also assist in this exercise. The close-grip places additional emphasis on the biceps and forearms. Squeeze your scapula together for peak-contraction.
The alternating lying row is a good alternative to the bent-over row because it places very little stress on the low back. While you will not be able to use as much weight you will be able to effectively target the shoulders and upper back. This exercise required dumbbells and a bench making it a good exercise for anyone with limited access to equipment. The alternating lying row can also be performed on a swiss ball to engage the core muscles.
The back drape is a good post-workout exercise to help cool you down. The bolster or rolled up towel provides support for your back to help you relax into the stretch. The purpose of the exercise is to stretch the mid back and chest and lower your body temperature. Lay back, relax and breath deeply.
The back pat is an active stretch for the shoulder girdle. Anyone who performs office work or has tight chest muscles would benefit from the back pat. No equipment is required so you could perform the back pat between sets of bench presses or between writing emails. After performing this exercise regularly you may feel your posture and shoulder mobility improve.
The ball drape is a passive stretch for the upper, mid and lower-back. It’s a very simple exercise to help relieve tightness in the back. Anyone who sits for long periods of time will benefit from performing the ball drape. For more of a stretch try and wrap your body around the ball. It’s important to relax and breath deeply.
The dumbbell chest press performed on the ball is significantly more challenging than the barbell bench press. The ball forces you to stabilize your body while pressing the dumbbells. You are also using you glutes and hamstrings to maintain proper position on the ball. This exercise requires you to focus your attention on using proper technique which helps you get more out of the exercise.
Lat pulldowns performed with a resistance band is a great exercise to develop “lat” strength. The latissimus dorsi muscles are activated in pulling movements and must be trained for proper back development. This exercise can be performed at home or at the gym. Using the resistance band allows each arm to operate independently. For variety in your workouts, alternate pulling each side down. When the resistance on the band becomes too easy, use the cable machine.
The seated trunk extension performed with a resistance band around your upper-body will increase your low back strength. This is a terrific exercise for anyone who sits in an office chair all day. After performing this exercise you will feel like your posture has improved. Hunching forward at a computer all day will place strain on your neck, shoulders and low back. The seated trunk extension is perfect for short stretch breaks.
The band shoulder adduction is used to strengthen the chest and lats. You can perform this exercise at home or at the gym with an elastic band or cable machine. This exercise is often performed to strengthen the shoulders and to regain mobility after surgery. As you progress on this exercise, select an elastic band with a high degree of tension for more resistance and added difficulty.
The shoulder extension exercise performed with a resistance band strengthens the rear-delt and lats. If an elastic band is not available you can use a cable machine. If no equipment is available for your workout a partner can manually apply resistance to your forearm. Concentrate on keeping your torso upright and your arm straight. The shoulder extension exercise is often used in a post-rehabilitation workout routine for strengthening shoulders and increasing mobility.
The barbell shoulder press performed seated is a compound exercise that strengthens the shoulders and triceps. Compound exercises involve multiple muscle groups and joints. If you are looking to develop strong, well defined-shoulders, the seated barbell press is for you. Seated barbell shoulder presses place more focus on the front of the deltoids than standing barbell presses.
The Barbell Suitcase Row strengthens the back and forearm muscles. Instead of using a bench for rowing, stand. By standing you increase the demand on the entire body, making the exercise “functional”. Include the Barbell Suitcase Row in place of dumbbell rows or bent-over rows.
The barbell upright row is strengthens the deltoids and trapezius. The barbell upright row is similar to the “shrug” and “high-pull” exercises in that it requires scapular elevation and recruits the upper back and neck muscles. You can incorporate the barbell upright row into your back workout, shoulder workout or upper-body workout. This is a staple exercise for wrestlers, football players, and mixed martial artists.
Bent-legged deadlifts strengthen the glutes, hamstrings, spinal extensors and core. It’s important to push the hips back while lowering your trunck during the bent-legged deadlift. This allows you to maintain proper posture and avoid flexing the back which may lead to low back strain. Be sure to contract your core, glutes, and hamstrings at the top of the movement.
The bent over row performed on a cable-pulley machine strengthens the latissimus dorsi, posterior deltoids, scapular retractors, spinal extensors and hip extensors. The cable provides additional resistance against the trunk which requires spinal stabilization and core strength. It’s important to keep the knees slightly bent in order to relieve strain on the lower back. Maintain a natural arch in the low back and activate the core while performing the bent over row.
The bent-over row performed with dumbbells strengthens the latissimus dorsi, posterior deltoids, scapular retractors, spinal extensors and hip extensors. The bent-over row with dumbbells is a challenging exercise that transfers well to life demands (real-world fitness). The bent-over row will help you build a strong, great looking back.