Do you suffer from back pain? There’s a workout that can help build the core strength you need to alleviate your back discomfort. Take advantage of this comprehensive guide to find the best workout for your back and get the relief you need.
Quick facts: Best Workout For The Back
- ✅ Good posture is key to protecting your back during a workout – Harvard Health Publishing
- ✅ Compound exercises, such as squats and deadlifts, are the best for working the back – American Council on Exercise
- ✅ Strengthening the core is important to help protect the back during exercise – Mayo Clinic
- ✅ Core and back exercises should be incorporated into a full body routine – MedlinePlus (National Institute of Health)
- ✅ Low-impact exercises, such as swimming and yoga, are great for a healthy back – American Chiropractic Association
Before starting any type of exercise, it is important to warm up your body. Warming up your muscles, tendons and ligaments will help with flexibility and prevent injuries.
For this workout, you should begin with dynamic stretching and light cardio to increase your heart rate and warm up your back muscles. This will help you perform each exercise with proper form and allow you to get the maximum benefit from your workout.
Dynamic stretching is an active form of stretching that involves continually engaging the muscles in a range of motion. This type of stretching prepares your body for physical activity by increasing circulation, activating muscle movements, and improving flexibility without compromising or making the muscles vulnerable to injury. When done properly, dynamic stretching can help warm up the body and reduce muscular tension.
Examples of dynamic stretches include:
- Arm swings
- Walking lunges
- Leg lifts
- Torso twists
Dynamic stretches are best performed before more intense exercise as they help prepare your body for the workout ahead.
Foam rolling is an effective way to warm up the back before beginning a lifting routine. Foam rolling loosens up the muscles, increases blood flow, and helps reduce post-workout soreness. Using a foam roller can help break up knots in the muscles and stimulate myofascial release, which reduces tension in tight areas of the body.
When foam rolling, begin with light pressure, gradually increasing intensity as needed until any tightness is released. Starting on the lower back, roll up along the spine and repeat for about one minute. This can be done with both long strokes and circular motions depending on where you feel tension or tightness along your spine. Once finished with this area, move onto your hamstrings and buttocks to properly warm up these muscles as well.
Strength and Stability Exercises
Strength and stability exercises are an important part of any routine to protect and strengthen your back. These exercises are designed to build strength and stability in the muscles, joints and ligaments to reduce the risk of injuries and to improve your posture.
In this article, we’ll be looking at some of the best strength and stability exercises for the back:
Seated rows are one of the best exercises for targeting the muscles in your back, including your lats, rhomboids, and trapezius. This exercise is performed by sitting upright in a chair or on a bench with a stability ball behind you. You then grab two dumbbells and pull them back towards your abdominals while keeping your shoulder blades retracted and squeezing your shoulder blades down and back together as you bring the weights forward. Make sure to keep your abdominals tight throughout the exercise and do not lean backward as you pull the weights with control.
This exercise can be modified to different levels of difficulty depending on the weight chosen, but should be done with proper form at all times to receive full benefit from the movement. Seated rows are great for strengthening the lower-back and promoting overall stability for improved posture and performance in everyday activities.
Lat pulldowns are a great way to build strength and stability in the back muscles. This exercise is typically performed on a high pulley machine, with an underhand (pronated) or overhand (supinated) grip. When performed correctly, the lats, rear deltoids, biceps and trapezius muscles are all engaged during this exercise.
Lat pulldowns help to improve posture and strengthen the back muscles for everyday activities such as carrying groceries and lifting heavy objects. This exercise can also be modified to target different muscle groups and challenge different levels of fitness. For example, by changing the grip from pronated to supinated or from wide to narrow grip, you can target different parts of your back muscles for increased strength.
Reverse flies—also known as bent-over rear delt raises—are often referred to as “the best workout for your back.” This type of exercise is designed to target the upper and middle rear deltoids, the muscles located at the back of the shoulder.
To perform a reverse fly, stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and slightly bend your knees. Then, lean forward until your upper body is parallel to the ground and hold a light dumbbell in each hand. Keeping your arms straight, lift each arm outwards in a circular motion until it’s directly parallel to the ground above you, then slowly lower it back down. Reverse flies can be done seated or standing and are incredibly effective at building strength and stability in the back muscles.
Core exercises are essential for strengthening your back muscles and improving posture. Having a strong core will allow you to perform complex movements with ease, and reduce the risk of injury.
Here, we will discuss some of the best core exercises that you can do to strengthen your back:
Planking is an excellent core-strengthening exercise that can help to improve your posture and reduce back pain. It works the muscles in your abdominals, lower back, and shoulders that are essential for a strong and supported spine. Planking can also help to strengthen other parts of the body such as your arms, chest, hips, and legs.
The key to doing it correctly is to ensure you are engaging the core muscles as you perform the exercise. To do a plank correctly, start by getting into a prone push-up position with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Keep your elbows bent but tucked into your sides, and focus on keeping your trunk and hips straight without arching or sagging them while you hold the pose for 10 seconds or longer depending on how comfortable you feel.
Planking is one of the best exercises for improving overall stability, so be sure to add it into your weekly workout routine!
Side planks are one of the most effective core exercises for targeting your lower back and obliques. To do a side plank, start by lying on your left side with your arms extended on the floor and your legs stacked up. Place your right elbow directly under your shoulder and then place your left hand on your hip or pressed against the floor. Tighten up all the muscles around your waist, from chest to knees, by pressing them into the floor or mat. Engage those abdominal muscles to help lift yourself up, so that you are supporting yourself with only one arm and feet stacked – creating a plank position parallel to the ground.
Hold for 10-30 seconds for 2-3 sets then switch sides. Side Planks are not only great for core strengthening but also wonderful stretches for both sides of torso, chest and arms!
The Superman exercise is one of the best core exercises to help strengthen your lower back and stabilise your spine. It is an effective workout for your lower back, abdominal and glute muscles.
To perform the Superman, start by lying on your stomach with your arms stretched out in front of you. Then while simultaneously lifting both your arms and legs off the ground (as if you’re flying like Superman), hold the position for a few seconds before returning to your starting position. Make sure you keep all of your core muscles engaged throughout the entire movement.
You can increase intensity by reaching as far away with both arms and legs as you can or by performing this exercise in a pulsing manner rather than holding it for one long duration at a time. This activity will help to increase endurance and strength in not just your lower back but also throughout the rest of your core muscles as well.
Mobility exercises are an important part of maintaining a healthy back. These exercises help to increase range of motion and ensure that the body is able to move freely and without pain. They can also improve posture and help to reduce the risk of injury.
Let’s look into the details of what are the best mobility exercises for your back:
Cat/Cow is an exercise that helps to improve flexibility, posture and spinal mobility. The Cat/Cow works core muscles and enhances flexibility in the lower back, abs, and hips. It helps to loosen up tight hip flexors and strengthen the spine.
To perform a Cat/Cow, begin on all fours with your hands and knees shoulder-width apart. From this position, inhale and arch your back while tucking in the pelvis until it points upward—this is known as the Cow pose. Upon exhaling, round your spine outward and slightly roll your hips inward—this is known as Cat pose. Continue alternating between Cat pose and Cow pose for 8–12 reps to help warm up your core muscles before moving on to other exercises or stretching.
Child’s Pose is an excellent mobility exercise for strengthening and stretching the back and core. To perform Child’s Pose, start by sitting on your knees (or you can use a yoga block or pillow) with your feet together. Then, slowly lower yourself so that your forehead, torso and upper arms are resting on the floor. Keep your arms in front of you, palms facing downwards. Your back should be arched slightly.
Close your eyes and begin to take deep breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth. This mobility exercise helps to reduce stress, fatigue, tightness and pain while increasing spinal flexibility. Take your time here to ensure that you stretch the spine as deeply as possible before going into a deeper pose such as Downward Dog or Cobra Pose.
Cobra Pose is a great stretching exercise for the back. This posture mimics the form of a cobra poised to strike. To get into the position, start by lying on your stomach with your feet flat and hands placed just below your shoulders. Then, press into your hands as you lift your head, chest and torso off of the ground while keeping your hips firmly planted. Hold this position for 10-15 breaths, then slowly lower down to the floor.
For an additional challenge, try lifting one arm off of the ground as you hold yourself in this pose. Cobra Pose helps stretch and mobilizes the spine while strengthening muscles such as the glutes and core. It also improves digestion and can help relieve some back pain when done properly.
After an intense workout for your back, it’s important to cool down and stretch to improve flexibility, reduce muscle tension and prevent injuries. This can also help to reduce any post-workout soreness.
So what are the best cool-down exercises that can be done after your back workout? Let’s find out:
Static stretching is a type of stretching that involves holding a stretched position for an extended period of time, usually between 15-30 seconds. This type of stretching is best used after exercise to help your muscles relax and promote better flexibility and range of motion. Static stretches are important for reducing the risk of soreness, improving posture, and speeding up the recovery process after physical exertion.
To do static stretching correctly, it’s important to start slowly by gently pulling on the muscle without bouncing or forcing it too far. If a stretch feels uncomfortable or painful at any point, don’t push through it; instead slowly release and rest for a few moments before trying again.
Foam rolling is one of the best ways to cool down after a strenuous workout. Foam rolling is a form of self-myofascial release (SMR) which helps to reduce tension, tightness and pain in your muscles. By using your own body weight, you apply pressure and massage to your soft-tissue – such as muscle, fascia or connective tissue – through a foam roller. The goal of foam rolling is to improve muscular flexibility, range of motion and tissue recovery. Additionally, it can help relieve sore muscle pain from intense workouts or long days on your feet.
To begin foam rolling, start by selecting the appropriate density foam roller for your needs and lay it on the floor. Then:
- Place one leg on the roller and roll back and forth slowly for 1-2 minutes.
- Switch sides.
- Focus on areas that feel particularly sore or tight, as this will help break up any knots or restrictions.
FAQs about: Best Workout For The Back
Q: What is the best workout for the back?
A: The best workout for the back is a combination of cardio and strength training exercises that target the back muscles. Exercises such as pull-ups, rows, and deadlifts are great for strengthening the back muscles. Additionally, low-impact cardio such as swimming and biking can help to improve endurance and flexibility in the back muscles.
Q: How often should I do back workouts?
A: It is recommended to do back workouts two to three times a week. However, it is important to give the muscles time to rest and recover between workouts, so it is best to alternate days of strength training with days of rest or low-impact cardio.
Q: Are there any specific tips for doing back workouts?
A: Yes, there are a few tips for doing back workouts. It is important to maintain good posture throughout each exercise, focus on using slow and controlled movements, and avoid arching your back when lifting weights. Additionally, it is important to use correct form to ensure that you are targeting the correct muscles and to prevent any injuries.