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Back Exercises



The back is such a huge muscle. There are 3 key muscles that you train in the back. Each is incredibly important to hit during training. If you spend all of your time training one area of the back, do not be surprised when only that area develops. Focusing on training the lats will not have the roll-over benefits on the rest of the back that you may expect. Instead, it’s important to compile various back exercises into one workout that targets the entire muscle group.

Exercises to Train Your Back

You came here to learn about back exercises. We’ll focus this section on a few that you need to train the key areas of the back. If you’re interested in learning more about the various exercises you can use, take a look at the sections below. In the meantime, the areas we’re going to cover are the lats, middle / upper-back, and traps. The lats are the muscles that give the ‘V’ look. You train these muscles with a combination of pull-ups, pull-downs and rows. These are the muscles that bulge out when you flex your back; they are the outer muscles. Using a wide-grip for pull-downs will help isolate this part of the back. Similarly, wide-grip pull-ups will do the job as well. You can hit the middle-back and upper back by using wider-grip rows. It’s important to pull the weights all the way back, so make sure to incorporate exercises with a greater range of motion (single-arm dumbbell rows). Finally, the traps. Yes, you could categorize this muscle under shoulders, but there are some exercises that hit the whole back which need to be classified here: deadlifts. Deadlifts are popular as both a back and a leg exercise. It’s because you’re really working your entire body to lift that much weight. Naturally, the traps and the back are involved. Grant offers and entire body series just for the back (it’s that important!). Try your free trial to see his daily workouts. Remember, all workouts update every day.


Dumbbell Back Exercises

Barbells and dumbbells both have unique abilities to isolate the back. One major difference with dumbbell exercises is a greater range of motion, which provides a nice benefit of isolating the back without having to engage other muscles. Here’s an example: when doing bent-over barbell rows, there are a lot of outside factors that could come into play. Your entire upper body must stay straight to full isolate the lats. You must have discipline not to engage the legs to help jumpstart the lifts. When opting for dumbbells, you could instead use the single-arm dumbbell row. It works the same muscle group, but here you have a bench supporting the rest of your body, allowing you to better isolate the back.


Barbell Back Exercises

No reason to bring up more workouts here than barbell rows and barbell deadlifts. These two barbell back exercises are the most common that you’ll see in the workout routines prepared by Daily Spot experts. They’re likely the most popular barbell back exercises that trainers user with their clients. Naturally, the barbell offers a less range of motion than the dumbbells. Don’t think that’s always a bad thing. It’s not. Once you find the right range of motion, the barbell will help to reinforce it. Once the form is perfected with a standard barbell row, a simple grip adjustment can hit an entirely different part of the back. In this case, having less range of motion is actually beneficial because it controls the motion of both arms simultaneously.


Bodyweight Back Exercises

Pull-downs for lats and rows for the middle of the back. This is impossible to do at home with no gym equipment, right? RIGHT? Actually, there are some great bodyweight back exercises that you can do at home, on the road, or at the office that hit the same muscles that weights do in the gym. Let’s start with the most obvious: the wide-grip pull-up.