Top 5 Upper Back Exercises

A good back workout can really make you feel great. I haven’t met anyone who said they didn’t feel good after a tough back workout. So today I’d like to give you my top 5 upper back exercises you can use to build that V-shape everyone likes. So here we go…

My Top 5 Back Exercises

1. The Pull Up

The mother of all back exercises. This one is the oldest around and is fantastic for building muscle and increasing strength and with some many different variations you can do; close grip, wide grip, pronated grip, supernated grip, alternate grip… You can hit every muscle in your back, bicep and even shoulders with just this one exercise.

2. The Australian Pull Up

This exercise is great if you can’t do a pull up and want and alternative to make sure you work your way up to a full pull up. This is a bodyweight alternative of the seated row which you would perform on a machine. This is an excellent move which targets the back and biceps

3. The Lat Pulldown

A similar exercise to the pull up. This will really hit your lats, as the name of the exercise suggests, and will really give you that V-shape that everyone likes. Personally I prefer pull ups as they’re more “natural” for the body, but this is fantastic for those who can’t do negative pull ups. If you can do negative pull ups I’d recommend doing those until you can do the full pull up.

4. The Seated row

Again, the exercise is similar to the Australian pull up. This move really hits the back and biceps which will also help you achieve a pull up, which is the ultimate goal.

5. Bent Over Row

A great exercise with a few different variations. You can do this with a barbell or with dumbbells. If you go with the dumbbells you can also do single arm bent over rows and really concentrate on hitting each side of your back. Personally I’d go with a mix of both barbell and dumbbell variations in your workout so you can work every muscle fibre to failure.

And there you have it, 5 great back exercises which you can do either at home or at the gym. The ultimate goal is to be doing pull ups as these really are the best exercise for your back.

If you have a favourite move that I haven’t mentioned here, I’d love to hear from you! I like getting exercise suggestions from the Dude Nation so please leave a comment below.

I hope you now have enough exercises to be doing tough back workouts. Enjoy guys!

Header Photo: Man Flexing His Back Header © 2011 – o0bsessed, Flickr (CC)

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Filed under: Upper Body Exercises

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