Saturday, 21 September 2013

5 mistakes you're making when training back

It's on the list - thick chest, chiseled abs, big arms and a v-shape back. But guys always struggle to build an impressive back. You can always tell the ones that lack a good back, because they walk around with their lats flared to try and compensate for the lack of width. So you've got 2 choices. 2 very easy choices. Either eradicate these 5 mistakes from your back day routine, or continue to walk round like you've got a coat hanger down your t-shirt! The choice is yours.....

You don't train it 
You might do a back day, but do you train it with the exact same intensity as when you do biceps in front of the mirror whilst the blonde treadmill bunny is watching? Probably not. 

You don't visualize 
With muscles like chest and biceps you can see the muscles working. You squeeze harder at the top of each rep and as a result the intensity ramps up, but you can't see your back. That's where you need to really work on the mind-muscle connection. Visualize your back contracting hard at the top of each rep. Imagine it getting wider after each rep. Why walk out of the gym after your session when you could be flying on your newly built wings...

You fail to hit your back with a pull, row and a lift
If you want complete back devepment, you need to hit it from all angles. The back can do 3 main movements:

Horizontal pull (rope facepull, seated row)

Vertical pull (pull ups, lat pull downs)

Hip dominant (deadlift, good morning)

You neglect grip strength 
If your grip isn't strong enough you won't be able to pull or lift a sufficent amount of weight to have a significant training effect on your back. 

You don't use a relevant tempo
Going back to caveman times when man had to catch his own food. The back and biceps were made to grab and hold. With that said, a slow tempo on the eccentric portion of exercises like dumbell rows and pull ups work really well for your back. Try 4010 (4 seconds down, 1 second up). Isometric holds also work well as a shock tactic for back training. How do you do that? Easy, hold the exercise in the top position for as long as you can.