Published on Apr 1, 2017
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Here with me at Abs After 40 is Miss Brooke Stacey and we are going to do a back workout today.
We’re going to get started with a really common back exercise that is a mainstay at almost every gym and it hits one of the biggest muscle groups of our back – our lats, or latissimus dorsi – and the exercise is the lat pulldown.
We’ll start with 3 warm up sets of a super light weight and something that’s really simple so that we can get our joints and muscles ready for these movements.
Focus on arching the middle/upper back, and pulling the elbows straight down to the ground. You should feel this in your lats, which are on the sides of your back below your arms.
Next, we’re going to move into Brooke’s exercise – the straight arm lat pull (or push) down. Standing with feet shoulder width apart, push the shoulders back and down to get into the proper position for the movement. Then you will just keep everything steady and stabilized as you pull the weight down with your arms staying straight or only slightly bent, but never changing the angle of your elbows throughout the movement.
Our third exercise will be some seated cable rows. You can choose a number of different cable attachments that allow you to switch your grip on the bar, which can introduce some different muscles or different angles while you’re doing this movement, while still hitting the same general muscle group.
Sitting tall with your shoulders pulled down and back and chest up, try to pull your scapula (or shoulder blades) back and together. This part of the movement is what really works the actual back muscles. Pull the elbows back just slightly further to tighten and increase your contraction and to also engage the biceps.
Grab a wider grip with palms neutral or facing down to incorporate the posterior deltoids, and keep the grip more narrow to focus on the other muscle groups of the back more so. With any of these movements, you will also be hitting parts of the trapezius and lats, plus some smaller muscle groups.
Next up we’ve got single arm dumbbell rows and I wanted to demonstrate this for you because I see a lot of guys in the gym really butcher this one. I want you to think about pulling your elbow back toward your hip rather than just focusing on bringing the dumbbell straight up into the air. This will encourage proper activation of your back musculature and hit those muscle groups that we’ve really been focusing on today – namely, the lats and a little bit of the traps as well.
I also want to show you guys another one of my favorites that’s great for hitting some of these upper back muscles, including the rear (or posterior) deltoids again and a couple other smaller (but still just as important) back muscles. Also, a few different areas of the trapezius will be activating here too.
Alright, guys, that’s 5 solid back exercises that we’ve shown you today although there’s a ton more you could do, but hopefully, you learned something new to incorporate into your own back day or maybe got a lesson in form and technique.
0:58 Warm Up – Light lat pulldowns
9:38 Straight Arm Lat Pushdown (cable machine)
17:09 Seated Cable Rows
23:55 Single Arm Dumbbell Rows
27:37 High Face Pulls
Keep up with us the next few days as I take you on a trip with me and my race car from Austin, Texas to Pueblo, Colorado. It was just myself and a camera man and we got a ton of great videos coming up for you including how to eat healthy at a gas station, how to eat healthy at the motel buffet that they serve for breakfast, we’ll work out at the race track, and you’ll also see an interview with some really interesting friends of mine who have been racing with me for years. They can give you a lot of really good advice on how they stay in shape so they can continue to have a really active lifestyle and race vintage cars well into their sixties and even seventies.
Looking forward to seeing you guys there!
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