Best back building exercises-for beefing up your lats

May 24, 2019 0 By Neil Brown

Developing a muscular back that is well proportioned is hard work but it is well worth it. A wide back gives the appearance of broader shoulders thus gives the appearance of a smaller waist line.

Today’s subject I will be covering in my personal opinion, the best back building exercises for beefing up your lats. At the end of this blog if you have any favorite back training exercises that you would like to add to my line up, please add them in the comments section below and I will do a blog featuring them.

To develop a well proportioned back not only takes hard work and dedication but it also takes a good training program with exercises that target your back from all angles. You will need to have lat exercises such as chins and pull downs with a variety of grips to target the outer and inner lats as well as lower lats.

Equally important is a wide variety of rowing exercises to pack muscle density on your lats that will give your back deep ravines and valleys of muscle that would make any muscle enthusiast jealous.

Barbell rows

Barbell rows are my favorite #1 exercise for developing muscle density on the back, they are an excellent exercise because you can go heavy with them. The standard way of doing them is with a slightly wider than shoulder width grip with palms facing back but you can also do them with different grip variations.

Have you tried doing barbell rows with a shoulder width or slightly narrower than shoulder width grip with palms back? doing this variation will hit the central region of your lats or you can try a narrow grip with palms facing forwards will target the lower region of your lats.

To perform the barbell rows, start with your feet shoulder width apart and your preference of grip, depending on what your target area is and pull the bar towards your midsection. If you stand on a platform or bench you can get a fuller stretch at the bottom position without the weights hitting the floor. Rep range depends on your goals, 8-10 for muscle and 15-20 for endurance.

Wide grip chins

Wide grip chins are my favorite #1 for developing wide lats. Many people tend to shy away from this exercise because it requires you to pull your body weight up and not everyone has the upper body strength to do this.

There are different ways that you can get around this little speed bump, for one you can have a spotter grab your ankles to assist, another way is to use an exercise band that you can attach to the chining bar and place under your knee, this will give enough added assistance to take the difficulty out of this exercise.

If you don’t have someone to assist you and you don’t have a exercise band, you can position a bench under the chining bar, place your foot on the bench and use your leg to give enough added assistance to take the difficulty out of this exercise.

To perform the wide grip chins, take a slightly wider than shoulder width grip with the palms of your hands facing forwards and pull yourself up until your upper chest reaches the chining bar. Other variations for the chins would be with a slightly narrower than shoulder width grip with palms facing toward you, this variation will target the central region of your lats.

Rep range depends on your goals, 8-10 for muscle and 15-20 for endurance. If you can’t quite reach your preferred rep range dependant on what your goals are, try one of the tips I suggested for assistance, otherwise you can start with a lower range of reps and work your way up.

T-bar rows

T-bar rows are another great exercise for adding muscle density to your lats. This exercise is a little similar to the barbell rows but the grip is a bit narrower and the one end of the bar is in a fixed position, this way you lean back slightly stressing your back muscles at a slightly different angle.

T-bar rows are another exercise that you can go heavy on like the barbell rows. The t-bar rows typically have a platform that you would stand on, generally giving you a shoulder width grip, the hand grip is generally tapered giving your hands a bit of a angled grip, lean back slightly and pull the handle to your midsection.

Rep range depends on your goals, 8-10 for muscle and 15-20 for endurance.

Lat-pull downs 

Lat-pull downs are a good exercise for developing the lat muscles, similar to the chins the lat-pull downs work in the same manner but instead of hoisting your body weight up, you can simply adjust the weight of the weight stack by ‘re-inserting the pin to your preferred choice of weight.

The lat-pull downs are quite versatile when it comes to a grip preference, there is the standard wide grip with palms facing forwards or you can do a shoulder width grip with palms facing toward you, this variation will target the central region of your lats.

You can also use different handle attachments for the lat-pull downs all stressing your back at different angles. A good point to take note of is when performing a exercise, take notice of where it feels like the exercise is targeting, if you give this special attention it will automatically direct you to performing the exercises with strict form.

Rep range depends on your goals, 8-10 for muscle and 15-20 for endurance.

Single arm dumbbell rows

Single arm dumbbell rows are a great exercise for developing the lat muscles simply because you are concentrating on performing one arm at a time, this puts more of a mind and muscle connection with one side of your back at a time.

Performing the one arm dumbbell rows is a great exercise for getting just that bit of an extra stretch to your lats because when you lower the dumbbell you should slowly let your shoulder swing forwards with the dumbbell, this will give your lat muscles an extra stretch at the bottom of the move.

When performing this exercise place your knee and hand on a bench for support, grip a dumbbell, stretch your shoulder forwards, upon your shoulder coming back from the stretch pull the dumbbell back to your side lower and repeat.

Rep range depends on your goals, 10-12 for muscle and 15-20 for endurance.

Conclusion

These exercises have always been my personal favorites, but that’s not to say that there are not plenty of other good back training exercises out there. If there are other exercises that are your personal favorite or if you have anything that you would like to add to the ones already mentioned, please feel free to comment at the bottom and I would love to feature them in an upcoming blog.

If you feel like you have been giving your training your all, but feel like you could be getting better gains, then I would like to recommend a product that should give you the boost you need, just click on this link to check it out.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them in the box.

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