Good Back Workout for Home or the Gym

Upper Back Workouts Hits: 1275

Below is a great upper back workout you can do at the gym or at home.

1. Barbell Shrug

Execution

1. Hold a barbell at arms’ length in front of the thighs, using an overhead shoulder-width grip.

2. Keeping arms stiff, shrug your shoulders as high as possible, pulling the bar vertically upward.

3. Lower the bar slowly down to the start position, stretching the trapezius.

Muscles Involved

Primary: Trapezius (upper and middle fibers).

Secondary: Levator scapulae, deltoid, erector spinae, forearms.

Range of motion: The higher the bar is raised, the harder the trapezius works.

2. Dumbbell Shrug

Execution

1. Stand upright with a dumbbell in each hand, hands hanging at your sides.

2. Keeping arms straight, shrug your shoulders upward as high as possible.

3. Lower the dumbbells back down.

Muscles Involved

Primary: Trapezius (upper and middle fibers).

Secondary: Levator scapulae, deltoid, erector spinae, forearms.

Range of motion:

The higher the weight is raised, the harder the trapezius works. The farther the dumbbells are lowered, the greater the stretch at the bottom.

3. Barbell Upright Row

Execution

1. Hold a barbell at arms’ length, using an overhand shoulder-width grip.

2. Pull the bar vertically upward until it reaches your chin, raising the elbows as high as possible.

3. Lower the bar slowly down the arms’ extended position.

Muscles Involved

 Primary: Trapezius, deltoid.

Secondary: Levator scapulae, deltoid, erector spinae, forearms.

Range of motion:

The higher the bar is raised, the harder the trapezius works but the greater the risk of shoulder-impingement pain.

4. Seated Cable Row

Execution

1. Grab the handles with arms extended in front.

2. Pull the handles high toward your chest, keeping your spine straight.

3. Return the handles to the start position.

Muscles Involved

Primary: Trapezius (middle and lower fibers) latissimus dorsi.

Secondary: Rhomboids, rear deltoid.

Range of motion:

Pull your elbows back and high as far as possible, and squeeze the shoulder blades together to maximize muscle contraction. 

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