Most gym goers don’t put enough emphasis on a killer back workout routine – nothing showcases a powerful physique more than a barn house door back.
Having a strong and muscular back puts your physique together and gives you a powerful base.
Not to mention if your back is lacking, you will be more susceptible to injuries during training.
Having a weak back actually holds you back from building lean muscle mass all over your body because you will be weaker on every single compound exercise such as the deadlift, bench press, squat, and barbell row.
Building a strong back is the foundation to big gains!
If your body has no glaring weakness and you are able to lift with maximum intensity on all of the best compound exercises, then you will be able to stimulate an incredible amount of anabolic hormone release.
This alone will transform you into a muscle-building machine. Because your back is one of the largest muscle groups in your body, it is vital that you train it with intensity and overload creating the ideal amount of hypertrophy.
The correlation to bigger arms and a strong back
Many naturally skinny guys have weak biceps and small arms from this lack of a functional foundation.
The stronger your back muscles are, the more your opposing muscle groups can fully develop.
If you have a weak back it will be nearly impossible to reach your full arm growth potential.
Take for instance your chest and bicep muscles that are the opposing muscle groups to your back.
Having a really strong and fully developed back will help you press more weight on the bench and curl more weight with your biceps as your body works in symmetry to opposing muscle groups and this will elevate your functional strength a great deal.
This is why one of Arnold’s favorite workouts from his bodybuilding prime was the classic “push and pull” workout.
This helps put an equal emphasis and equal amounts of strength on your back and chest muscles, which creates a powerful and impressive physique.
There are actually four main groups of muscles in your back – and it is crucial that you develop all four components.
Just as extremely impressive shoulder muscles involve working all 3 deltoid heads – you need to make sure you are performing a wide array of back exercises that focus on building each section of your back.
The four components to your back muscles are the trapezius, rhomboids, latissimus dorsi, and erector spinae.
Back Training Principles
You want to follow a few principles with your back training if you want an aesthetically pleasing and strong back that will build an incredible foundation to your upper body.
These are the principles to back aesthetics.
Make sure you are training your traps with heavy weight to establish the upper back “caps” that bring everything together
You need to put an emphasis on your upper and mid lats to create that aesthetically pleasing V-Taper that forms the basis of aesthetics.
You need to emphasize heavy weight and time under tension with row exercises to build those bulky rhomboid muscles.
Direct lower back work that will create structure in the lower back.
- Finally: DEADLIFTS. Deadlifts will develop your entire back like no other.
Now most guys train their back but only have a slight V-Taper due to a lot of lateral pull downs but don’t have the other components of their back muscles.
If you want to have an incredible looking back that looks aesthetically pleasing and also builds an awesome foundation you need to follow these principles and train each of the 4 main groups.
The best back workouts that emphasize a “barn house door back” and stimulates the maximum amount of muscle growth and anabolic hormone release will follow these principles:
Compound Exercises that work the lats and hit other components of the back
Heavy Training in the 5-8 repetition range that is 75-90 percent of your 1 rep max
Exercises that build depth, thickness and width in the back.
A high amount of focused and heavy reps with 5-7 days rest between (50-70 reps every 5 to 7 days seems to be the perfect amount for an experienced lifter)
With that being said, what does the best back workout look like that will emphasize all four components of your back muscles and give you that incredibly strong and aesthetic looking back?
Let’s dive in and break down the best back workout for an incredible barn house door looking back. Do this workout every 5-7 days for maximum lean muscle gains!
THE BARN HOUSE DOOR BACK WORKOUT FOR A THICK BACK
Sets: 4, Reps: 3-6, Rest Time: 120 Seconds
Note: This is an incredible back workout because you are emphasizing the erector spinae all the way to your traps. Another benefit is that this exercise will also blast your hamstrings. Make sure to emphasize your form and stay tight during this movement.
Seated Cable Row (Close Grip)
Sets: 3, Reps: 6-10, Rest Time: 90 Seconds
Note: This is a fantastic exercise for emphasizing the large rhomboid back muscles so make sure you get a great pump and really squeeze those muscles as you row the bar into your abdomen.
Wide Grip Lateral Pull down
Sets: 4, Reps: 8-12, Rest Time: 90 Seconds
Note: This exercise will build your lats and really emphasize the middle portion, which brings together that V Taper look. Make sure that your hands are wider than shoulder width apart to emphasize the mid lats.
Sets: 4, Reps: 8, Rest: 2 Minutes
Note: The barbell row is another awesome exercise for strengthening the erector spine and building up your back muscles. Another bonus is that you will be getting an incredible bicep pump during this exercise.
Underhand Grip Pull-Ups (Weighted Optional)
Sets: 3, Reps: 6-10, Rest: 90 Seconds
Note: This one is going to drill your upper lats and also build thickness and depth in your biceps. Underhand Grip Pull-Ups are one of the best bicep builders since you are working your bicep muscles from a different angle.
If you are strong enough make sure that you do these weighted either with a dumb bell between your feet or with a weight belt.
1 Arm Db Row
Sets: 3(each arm), Reps: 8-12, Rest: 90 Seconds
Note: This exercise is going to sculpt your rhomboid muscles and is the best iso-lateral type movement for building that barn house door back. The 1 arm db row allows you to work each side of your back individually chiseling your rhomboids to aesthetic perfection.
Weighted Reverse Hyper-extension
Sets: 4, Reps: 10-12, Rest: 90 Seconds
Note: This is the best exercise for targeting your lower back and building a strong foundation. Unlike the other back exercises that are working your upper and middle sections of the back, the weighted reverse hyper-extension will target your lower back muscles, which is most guys’ weakness.
This exercise will also help you to dead lift more weight and build a very strong foundation. Many injuries occur due to weaknesses in the lower back.
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