Ready to take your back workouts to the next level? Building a strong back is a necessity if you want to create a powerful physique that really turns heads. Plus, if all you do is chest work when you go the gym, you’ll risk muscular imbalances that could, in time, lead to serious injury.
This is why devoting good care and attention to your back workouts is a must. Using a few tips, you can ensure that you make the most of every single session you do.
Let’s look at four ways to take those sessions further.
Check Your Grip Pattern
The first thing to check out is what sort of grip pattern you’re using for these workouts. Remember, the wider the grip you use for exercises such as lateral pull-downs, pull-ups, as well as bent over barbell rows, the more lat activation you are going to evoke.
Alternative, the closer the grip, the more mid-back and bicep activation you’ll receive. Determine which is your weak spot and then adjust your grip accordingly. A slight shift in your hand position can make a world of difference.
Next, make sure that you strike a balance in the exercises you choose. You’ll want to be sure that you include as many horizontal pulling exercises as you do vertical pulling exercises in your routine.
If all you do is go in and perform five sets of bent over rows, single arm rows, and cable rows, you’ll be creating a severe muscular imbalance in no time. Balance out your pull-downs/pull-ups with your rows for better results.
Use The ‘Hook’ Thought Process
One simple but very effective technique to really get the back muscles activating when doing your rows is to imagine that your hand is a hook and you are pulling the weight of the dumbbell up towards the ceiling.
This can help you take some of the tension out of the hand, which can lessen the total stress load on the back muscles themselves.
Visualizing this hook in your mind as you pull the weight up can help with better overall muscle fiber recruitment and therefore growth.
Another good way to make use of this concept is to use a thumbless grip pattern, which will also reduce your ability to pull using the forearm muscles.
Contract From The Shoulder Blades First
Finally, the last way to get more from every back workout you do is to focus on leading each rowing movement you do by retracting from the shoulder blades first and then pulling the weight up.
This small adjustment can help you activate your back muscles to a much larger degree, leading to superior gains in strength and muscle size.
To get started with this technique, try lightening the load you’re lifting and focusing in on that small initial movement and then moving into the rest of the normal movement pattern. Once you’ve gotten the feel for this, then you can increase to your normal weight gain.
So there are four great ways that you can kick-start your back workout and get on a path to faster results. Back training should never be neglected. While you may not directly look at these muscles when you’re checking your physique out in the mirror, it’s one set of muscles that will complete your look.