Team Powertec athlete Rob Riches demonstrates exercises that will focus on your upper back development and width.
About Rob Riches
Rob Riches is a Fitness Model, 2x WBFF World Fitness Champion and a personal trainer with certifications through NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine), YMCA & REPs (Register of Exercise Professionals).
Hey guys, I’m Rob Riches part of team Powertec and on today’s training show I’ll be showing how to focus upper back development and width to really gets that V-taper in the shoulders down to the tight waist. Three exercises using two Powertec machines: LeverGym and later on, the Functional Trainer.
First up, Lat Pull Downs to really focus on some width and thickness in the upper parts of the back, working Latissimus Dorsi. Now to really get the full benefit of doing that lat pull down, you want to focus on squeezing the center of your back. Too many people focus on just pulling it down with their arms engaging more of their biceps than their Lats. Key of this is keep the chest directly above that line of pull so that the back muscles are squeezing as you bring that bar down. Now the bar shouldn’t touch your chest, but it’s as though for women, think of your bra strap right in the center of the back you wanna squeezing that with your lats. And for guys, if you have a trainer partner have them hold their fingers just in the upper area of the back so you could really feel that squeeze as you pull the bar down. Again, it’s all about muscle engagement and really working the muscle involve in that particular exercise. Ten (10) to twelve (12) repetitions, Three (3) to Four (4) sets increasing the weight up and increments of no more than about 10%, and that key to some solid muscle growth within a couple of months training.
Next up we going to do a Seated Single-Hand Row, again to focus on the full range of motion and really hit that outer and upper portion of the back. I said a lot. Really feeling that one, it’s a great exercise to do, and also varying by switching left to right. I’ve only done an example here so make sure you do both left and the right side but by switching arms and just working isolaterally, one side at a time, you can really focus on doing that little bit of extra range of motion to really hit that muscles hard and increase the weight. Again it’s only a small step up that you need to really make a difference.
Couple of tips on this one when you are seated, make sure you hit the hips firmly planted down on the workbench so you won’t twist the whole body round pretty much turning that other shoulder around and squeezing the back in as you pull the handle close towards your hip. Simple technique from breath in, breathe out that will help tighten the abdominals rotate round keep elbow close to the body and really squeeze in that back holding for split second to reduce any momentum of swinging back and forth. Again, 12-15 repetitions tops, always trying to increase the weight for every work set.
Right, let’s move on and finish off with the body weighted exercise to really target our upper and outer portion of the back.
Body weighted pull-ups are one of the best exercises for developing and strengthening the back but only performed correctly. Now I’m going to use a neutral hand position on this pull up bars up here to really focus on the inner upper portion of the back. Unlike with the lat pull down, I’m going to angle my chest upwards directly above with where the weight is gonna be which is my body weight so that when I pull my body weight up, it’s the back that’s really engaging and lifting up not my arms again. So, let’s get to it.
Just that simple changing of the handgrip from overhand wider grip to that neutral narrow grip really can make a big difference in how you engage and how you work the back. You really do feel it in the inner portion here, which will help thicken out and grow more width in the back. Just be careful that you go through a full range of motion to really stretch out that back muscle. A lot of time you may see people in the gym just do a short range of motion and really not engaged the full back muscle. So my tips for working on a wider back development and getting that V-Taper is start with the heavier lat pull down then focus on some isolateral movement with some single handed back rows finishing off with some body-weighted exercises for really as many repetitions as you can do. Every now and again switch up reverse the routine and start with body weighted and move through up towards the heavy weight. You’d be surprised on how much strength you may have left at the end of the workout.
That’s all time that I have today. For more videos check out Powertec fitness and I’ll be back soon to show you more tips, tricks and techniques to get that Powertec dream body.
See you soon, Bye!