A strong back is a sexy back, and a well-shaped back requires regular attention in the weight room. You don’t have to do a million lat pulldowns or pullups to get the look you want, though! Just add a few of these exercises suggested by GGS Ambassadors as great back exercises for women.
Don’t forget your low back!
The low back is frequently neglected, but it’s super important when it comes to whole health. Strengthening your low back can help prevent or reduce low back pain and also helps with posture and overall core strength.
Back extensions or backward situps on a stability ball
One great exercise for strengthening the low back are back extensions on a stability ball. Not familiar? You may have heard of them by a different name. Girls Gone Sporty Ambassador Glenda Rigby of PinkShamrock.MerrittIsland concurs that these are great, “My favorite back exercises are backwards situps on my Pilates ball!” No matter what you call them, they’re going to help you get the strong, sexy back you desire!
The Locust pose is a yoga term for a static exercise similar to the more commonly known “Superman” exercise designed to strengthen the low back. Ambassador Nicole Bobco of Masters2Marathons explains, “I do these a few times a week (in addition to a few other lower back core exercises) because it helps keep my SI joint issue from aching since it is more ‘loose’, something that’s generally more common in women due to body physiology.” Perform the exercise as follows:
- Lie face down and arch your upper back just a few inches off the floor, keeping your neck straight and aligned by looking at the floor. Keep your arms along your sides, “Like you are flying streamlined,” Bobco says.
- Lift both legs a few inches off the floor.
- Hold for 30 seconds. Rest and repeat a few times.
Robin Callarman of Unquenchable Laughter agrees that yoga’s a lifesaver, “For back exercises I love yoga! It doesn’t seem like much, compared to all the lifting exercises that are out there, but having your back be flexible and open helps with everything else!”
Mid and upper back
Your mid and upper back generally get all the love – and for good reason! Your lats, traps and rhomboids are large muscles that each play an important role in upper body and arm movement.
Most people are familiar with exercises like pullups and seated rows, but two Girls Gone Sporty ambassadors, Joanna Broadbent of Sports Bras and Sippy Cups, and Melissa Chestnut of MelRUNStheworld, both love T-bar rows. Joanna explains, “They work your middle back and your lats and give you the awesome v-taper.” Check out Melissa performing the exercise:
Another great move that will get your entire upper body working is the pushup lawnmowers exercise suggested by Katy from Fit in Heels. Simply complete one push up and move immediately into a one-armed row. If you’re feeling especially motivated, hold a dumbbell in each hand and perform the row with a dumbbell. Check out Katy’s video to see the move in action: