What Are the Benefits of Back Exercises?

You may not see your back easily in the mirror, but that doesn’t mean you should skip it in your workouts. Back exercises create a sculpted backside that looks good as you walk away. Back exercises have a deeper impact, too, as a strong back keeps your posture pristine and your spine healthy.

Aesthetic Benefit

Some trainees at the gym have a habit of only working the muscles they see in the mirror. These “mirror” muscles are the ones you flex in your reflection to prove you’re looking good — usually, your chest, biceps, fronts of the shoulders, quads and abs.

If you’re a bodybuilder or figure competitor, however, all parts of your physique are up for judgment. Therefore, you need back exercises to provide symmetry between the front and back sides of your body. Even if you’re just a gym rat who is after the coveted V-shaped torso in which broad, sexy shoulders taper down into a narrower waist, you need to train your back muscles — particularly the latissimus dorsi, rhomboids and traps.

Structural Necessity

Neglecting your backside — particularly your back muscles — can have structural consequences for your body. A weak back means you don’t have the musculature to prevent rounded shoulders, which can cause neck and shoulder pain, as well as make you look as if you’re lacking confidence.

When your middle and lower back muscles are weak, you are more likely to experience low back pain. Strengthening the deeper muscles of the back, particularly the erector spinae, multifidus and quadratus lumborum, develops support for your spine and pelvis. This makes all action safer and more stable, including running a 5K, bench pressing a heavy barbell, moving furniture, carrying groceries or twisting to pick up a dropped set of keys.

A Balanced Body

Working the muscles of your back in conjunction with those of your front also creates muscular balance, so you’re a super-functioning human being. If you work the muscles at the front side at the expense of your back, you’ll likely develop muscle imbalances that only lead to injury and pain.


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