Big Back

How To Get A Big Back!

One thing you must’ve noticed is that strongmen tend to have large backs. Sadly, this muscle group is majorly neglected by the majority who go to the gym. Everyone focuses on the mirror muscles – chest, abs and biceps for example – and what results is a rounded upper back, like a Neanderthal. You might think it’s funny, but the chest muscles you’re trying to develop will, in the long run, be hindered from being visible due to this poor posture. As such, training your back properly is undeniably essential for your overall physique. If you’re here to learn how to achieve a big back, you’re in the right place.

#1 Focus On The Elbows

With any back movement, when your goal is hypertrophy, make sure to focus on driving the elbows back rather then your hands. If you keep this in mind throughout every back-focused exercise, your results will skyrocket and you will achieve a big back. We know so many individuals who find it difficult to engage their back muscle – if you implement this back hack, it will be much easier to ensure you are hitting the back muscles.

#2 Alternate Hand Positions

Play with different hand positions like Supinated (Hands facing up), Neutral (Hands facing each other) and Pronated (Hands facing down). This will result in you engaging different parts of the lats and rhomboids, as opposed to just hitting one aspect of each muscle group. This is an absolutely fantastic example of training smart in order to get a big back.

#3 Don’t half Rep It

Focus on taking the muscle through it’s fully shortened and fully lengthened range. No partial or half reps allowed! The back is a difficult area to engage properly, and thus it is much more beneficial to utilise a full range of motion. This will mean you recruit much more muscle fibres and thus in the longrun will see more muscle gain – i.e. a big back!

#4 Tear The Bar in Half

When doing Barbell or Machine Rows, focus on tearing the bar in half as you pull the weight towards you to it’s fully shortened range. Imagine your elbows going out, away from the body as you pull. This, again, will allow for an increase in muscle fibre recruitment. This is a really simple hack to get a big back.

#5 Master The King Of Back Exercises

Master the king of exercises – in our opinion, the deadlift. Once you can appropriately move a decent load on this with near perfect form, focusing on other accessory movements should be fine. Deadlifts on their own are probably the most bang-for-your-buck back exercise. We have not yet seen anybody with a respectable deadlift have small or weak back. That being said, focus on form before adding weight – for many people, correct deadlift form doesn’t come easy, so spend time ensuring all aspects of this lift are perfect. 

#6 Incorporate Chin-Ups

This next back hack exercise is known as the squat of the upper body. The chin up, if you’ve the strength to perform them, is the next best thing after deadlifts for developing a respectable back. Combine the two exercises (chin ups and deadlifts) in a program with good rest and nutrition and you’ve got a recipe for a big back.

#7 Banded Activation Drills

Do some banded activation drills prior to training to get blood flowing into the area you’re going to train that day. Banded pull aparts or face pulls are great activation drills for your back:

#8 Keep The Chest High

This is a simple one, but one which many forget about. Keep your chest high and proud throughout each back exercise. We don’t want a slipped disc from sloppy technique. It will also ensure you engage the correct muscles and thus will in the longrun tie over into a big back.

#9 Ask Yourself..

Always ask yourself ‘how can I make the muscle as short as possible?’ and ‘how can I maintain tension throughout the entire set?’. Applying these tips will sky rocket your results and give you that highly developed big back everyone wishes for.