A big, stronger & muscular back is the foundation of quality upper body. Moreover, the lats hanging from the back that creates the ‘V’ shape is the ultimate beauty of a muscular body, right? So, if you want to build every muscle of your back to make a thick, strong and overall muscular ‘V’ shaped back, try these 10 best exercises for back which are great for developing a wide & muscular back.
Include 3 to 5 exercises from this list in your back day depending on your fitness level. Just keep in mind that don’t include two similar exercises together rather focus on different back exercises for different back muscles (Exercises like Deadlift & Barbell Row are compound exercises so you can add both of them together with any other back exercise). Without further ado, let’s know in detail what are the 10 best exercises for back that you should add in your workout to see results much faster!
Deadlift is not only one of the best exercises for back but also one of the most effective strength building exercises. When it comes to strengthen your every back muscle along with the spine, there is nothing better than this exercise. Deadlift is truly the best for overall back development as this exercise hits every back muscle from your traps to your glutes.
Always do Deadlift first when you are fresh so that you can lift enough heavy weight with low repetitions (6-8) for building strong and massive back. Start with the Conventional Deadlift and as you progress in lifting heavier weight, you can go for your suitable Deadlift variations such as Romanian & Sumo Deadlift.
Bent-Over Barbell Row
Just like Deadlift, Bent-Over Barbell Row is another one of the best exercises for back in terms of building size and thickness in the back muscles. It is also a great strength building exercise as you can lift heavy weight in this back movement too. Bent-Over Barbell Row is quite a great overall back builder as it puts enough tension in the upper and lower back muscles simultaneously.
After Deadlift, you can go for Bent-Over Barbell Row because it is another exercise that requires lots of stamina and strength so you should do this movement as early as possible in your workout session. Go for heavy sets of 8-10 repetitions for maximum muscle growth, size and volume.
V-Grip Lat Pulldown
Just like rowing exercises, pulldowns are also very effective machine-based exercises for back. Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown is the most popular among them but our experience tells that V-Grip Lat Pullsown is the most effective among all of them as it not only activates the lats more because of its long range of motion but also this exercise puts the inner muscles of the back like traps, rhomboids, teres & erector spinae into serious pressure to make your overall back more muscular, V-tapered & big. Thus, V-Grip Lat Pulldown is surely one of the best exercises for back.
As it is a machine exercise, don’t go for heavy weight rather go for moderate weight with 12 repetitions in each set. When pulling down the weight, hold & squeeze the back muscles for a sec for extra emphasis. Include this exercise towards the end of your workout session for best results. We strongly think, this exercise is a great alternative for T-Bar Row and could be better then T-Bar Row if done with proper form! So, you don’t want to miss that excellent pulldown back exercise, do you?
One-Arm Dumbbell Row
This is another very common and popular rowing exercise that just like T-Bar Row, works best in the lats especially in the lower portion. Unlike other rowing exercise, this unilateral back exercise – One-Arm Dumbbell Row has longer range of motion so alongside lifting heavy dumbbells, you have to focus on the stretching of the muscles & feel the burning of the lower lats!
Always put the other hand on a bench to support your position and go for proper form while doing this Single-Arm Dumbbell Row. Go for 10-12 reps per set to get maximum results. So, it is no doubt this is one of the best exercises for back. Don’t forget to include this in the middle of your back workout session.
It is no secret why Pull up is one of the best bodyweight exercises. It hits every muscle in the upper back as well as in the shoulders and biceps. If you want bigger lats, you can go for Wide-Grip Pull-Ups which is excellent for putting pressure on the upper lats. As Pull up is an exercise that requires long range of motion and enough strength in the forearms, make sure you perform this exercise in the correct form otherwise, you would hurt yourself.
If you are a beginner and find Pull ups difficult, you can use assisted Pull up machine or find a good spotter who helps you to perform proper form and range of motion. If you’re an advanced lifter, try 10-12 repetitions of each set of Pull ups. If possible, hold for 1 sec after pulling your body up to the bar in order to create extra tension in your back muscles which will be even more effective! In case, you have mastered the pull ups, you can do weighted pull ups!
Along with Bent-Over Barbell Row, T-Bar Row is also one of the most common and popular rowing exercise for gaining size in the back especially in the lats. Just like Barbell Row, in this back movement, you can also lift very heavy weight to put pressure on the inner as well as outer muscles of the back.
Make sure, you lift enough weight to put pressure on your back muscles and while lifting that heavy weight, also make sure, your legs are locked in a bent angle throughout the sets. Don’t just blindly lift the weights like a powerlifter rather focus on the contraction and stretching the muscles. As we have already said, T-Bar Row is one of the easiest and best exercises for back especially for the lower lats which makes your back bigger & gives a ‘V’ cut look! So, you should obviously include this amazing rowing exercise in your back sessions.
Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown
This is the most popular & common Lat Pulldown exercise although it’s not as effective as the V-Grip one when it comes to build overall back from upper to lower. However, what it does best is to target on the upper back muscles like traps, teres & obviously upper lats. So, if you want to make a broad muscular upper back which we know you all want, then you should definitely include this one of the best exercises for back in your back day.
As this is a machine exercise, you should perform this towards the end of your workout. You can also finish your workout session with this exercise too. Go for moderate weight with 10-12 reps for better hypertrophy. Feel the contraction & extension while performing this pulldown exercise for best results. If big upper back is your goal, Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown is a must in your routine.
When it comes to build back muscles, lats are the main concern for majority of gym-goers so if you are one of them, you should not miss Dumbbell Pullover which is an amazing exercise to specifically target your lats that leads to big muscular wings & who doesn’t like big wings, right? So, start Dumbbell Pullovers from today to make your lats wide & ‘V’ shaped!
If you want best results for your lats, you should do Dumbbell Pullover in the end of your back day. Start with a medium size dumbbell for 12 to 15 repetitions. As this is a long range of motion exercise, slowly perform it with proper balance & form. Focus on your lats under tension while working out. Make sure that the dumbbell will reach over your face but not further otherwise your chest will be put under pressure, not lats!
Cable Rope Pulldown
Another excellent pulldown exercise in our list of best exercises for back! Cable Rope Pulldown is one of the best if not the best pulldown exercises for back as it targets all the major & minor muscles of your back! This works just like the Bent-Over Barbell Row so, if want some good alternatives for the Barbell Row, Cable Rope Pulldown is a suitable one.
But, unlike Barbell Row where you have to lift heavy weight, in this exercise, you have to go for moderate weight & focus on the contraction & stretching of your all the muscles in the back. You can perform 10 to 12 reps per set for best results. Towards the end of the workout is the best time to hit this exercise but performing in the middle is also a better idea. So, this is another overall back builder that you shouldn’t ignore!
If you think Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown is the only expert for upper back then you are totally wrong. Chest-Supported Row is another specialist that helps to build a muscular upper back as you have to lie on your chest on a 45° incline bench & start rowing with a couple of dumbbells or a barbell. You don’t have to bent to start rowing like Bent-Over Barbell Row rather your chest as well as the whole torso is supported on a bench so that you can put extra emphasis on your upper back muscles.
Chest-Supported Row is a great alternative of Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown so if you don’t like to do Lat Pulldown then you should do this exercise instead for upper back as this is also one of the best exercises for back. You can do Chest-Supported Row for 8-10 reps with moderate weight or with a pair of medium size dumbbells.
Choose the Exercises Wisely!
Therefore, these are the 10 best exercises for Back that will help you develop a perfect back in terms of size, muscularity & thickness. If you want a ‘V’ shaped back, you have to include 3-5 exercises from this above list. You can make Deadlift & Barbell Row compulsory as both of them hits almost every back muscles. Then you can choose 2 more depending on your goal such as if you want bigger lats then choose two exercises that specifically target lats or if you want muscular upper back & inner back muscles, then you can choose two exercises that are upper back dominant. But, you know what? That will be a foolish thing to do like we already have mentioned before.
So, we will always suggest to choose all the different exercises for different back muscles if you really want to get a perfect back. Don’t forget to warm-up properly before your gym sessions otherwise injury will be your best friend. Alright guys, we hope you have found this article about best exercises for back helpful enough. If it really so then don’t hesitate to express your valuable thoughts in the comment section below. Thanks for visiting & appreciating our work.