If you need to get a quick back workout in, then resistance bands are your best bet. After my gym closed in Southern California, I had to figure out the best way to retain all the muscle gains that I’ve made my entire life. I started using resistance bands, and they helped me tremendously. I’ve written two other articles on an Arms Workout, and a Chest Workout. This is a great back workout with resistance bands.
Disclaimer – Although I am a Certified Personal Trainer, I am not YOUR Personal Trainer. This article is for informational and educational purposes only and does not establish any kind of personal trainer-client relationship with me. I am not liable or responsible for any damages or injuries resulting from or related to your use of this information. Consult your physician, nutritionist, or a registered dietician prior to starting any workout or nutrition program.
What are resistance bands?
Resistance bands are an inexpensive way of working out! The great thing about resistance bands is they provide “resistance” against your muscle fibers during your eccentric and concentric contraction. In other words, it works while you are muscles are shortening and when they are lengthening. Amazon provides great resistance bands. I recommend these to viewers and clients. I wrote an article including some full-body workouts here at Fitmanfitness.com.
What’s in the Box!
- 5 resistance bands – 50, 40,30,20, and 10 lbs. But, you can use any of these together up to 150 lbs.!!
- Two ankle straps – These are great to incorporate in leg exercises and ab exercises
- Two Handles
- A workout poster
- A Carry bag
- Door Anchor – The door anchor on this product is genius! Simply put the small plastic tube of the anchor behind the door. The strap will be left on the outside of the door where you will be doing exercises.
Note – These resistance bands from fitnessinsanity.net have been selling extremely fast. If you cant get your hands on these, then purchase another brand. They are all equally great!
The Anatomy of the Back
In this article, I am going to explain the anatomy of several major Back muscles. These include your Lats, your Traps, and the Rhomboids. I am not suggesting that these are the only Back Muscles that you should only workout, but this article is a great starting point when understanding the back muscles
The Latissimus Dorsi (Lats) Muscles
The Latissimus Dorsi Muscles, or Lats, are the large muscles on both sides of your back, and these muscles are what create the “V-shape.” The Lats are responsible for adduction, extension, and internal rotation of the shoulder. 1
The Insertion Point of the Lats
Bicipital groove of the Humerus
The Origin of the Lats
- Spinous processes of T7 – L5 vertebrae.
- Iliac crest of sacrum.
- Thoracolumbar fascia
- The inferior angle of the scapula
- Lower three or four ribs
The Trapezius (Traps) Muscle
“The trapezius is a large paired surface muscle that extends longitudinally from the occipital bone to the lower thoracic vertebrae of the spine and laterally to the spine of the scapula. It moves the scapula and supports the arm.
The trapezius has three functional parts:
- An upper (descending) part which supports the weight of the arm
- A middle region (transverse), which retracts the scapula
- A lower (ascending) part which medially rotates and depresses the scapula.” Wikipedia
See the illustration below:
The Origin of the Traps
The Traps origin is at the occipital bone, the ligamentum nuchae, and the spinous processes of T01–T12.
The Insertion Point
The Trap Muscle inserts on the lateral third of the clavicle, as well as the acromion and scapular spine of the scapula.
The Rhomboid Muscles
The Rhomboid muscles are important in upper limb movement and stability of the shoulder and scapula. They are comprised of the Rhomboid Major and Rhomboid Minor. The Rhomboids are important because they allow you to stabilize your shoulders and your scapula while working out or trying to improve your posture
The Origin of the Rhomboids
The Insertion Point of the Rhomboids
Why do you need to know about the Insertion Point and Origin?
Knowing this will help you maximize the growth of your muscle because you will know which direction to move in order to contract the muscle properly. Whenever you are contracting the muscle, focus on bringing the Insertion Point to the Origin. As I tell my clients, visualize contracting those two points together, slowly.
Why do you need the about following the fibers?
Similar to knowing about the insertion point and origin, following the muscle fiber is equally as important. I constantly remind my clients to follow the fiber. In addition, as you are working out the muscle, remember to contract the muscle in direction of the muscle fibers. Understanding the direction in which they are going will allow you to maximize chest muscle growth.
In addition, I tell my clients to research the particular muscle before the training session. Make it a habit to look online prior to working out the way in which the muscle fibers run, then apply that to your workout. It will make a huge difference in back muscle growth! Even prior to the exercise, I will spend a few moments online with my client searching for the term “Insertion point of back muscles,” or “Origin of the back muscles,” or “Muscle fibers of the back muscles.” You can also find these diagrams on this blog post on my website at www.fitmanfitness.com.
Now that you know about the insertion point, origin, and how to follow the fibers, you now can apply that to your workout. Before you begin any rigorous exercise it is best to consult a physician. You never know what is going on internally with your body, such as high blood pressure.
To begin your workout you must warm-up the muscles
Warm-up your back muscles to begin your back muscle growth
Warming up your muscles is essential to having a great workout. If you do not warm up your back muscles prior to applying resistance training, your muscles are more susceptible to muscle strains and pulls.
In addition, your “endurance will be compromised.” 1 Cramp and muscle fatigue can occur because you will experience a buildup of lactic acid more rapidly.
So, I usually advise my clients to get on the treadmill for 15 minutes. If you do not have a treadmill, do several sets of jumping jacks or high steps. This will help to get your heart rate up, which delivers more oxygen to the muscles and organs, and it opens up capillaries for additional blood flow.
Remember, stretching and warming up are two different things. Stretching refers to stretching the back muscles to prevent muscle strains and pulls, and warming-up refers to raising the temperature of the body.
Now, on to the exercises. Check out this video below for the best back workout with resistance bands.
If you are a beginner, then I suggest doing the Bent Over Lat Pull, the Close Grip Row, the Narrow Grip High Row, and the Wide Grip High Row. You can do 3-4 sets and 10-15 reps. Start with low weight resistance bands so you get used to the movement. You can work your way up to heavier bands in several weeks.
When you understand the muscles of the back, you will approach your resistance band’s workout in a whole new way. I advise clients that it is important to research their muscles before working them out. There are so many muscle diagrams online now that you can review your anatomy and the way the fibers run. Applying weight with the resistance bands is a great way to strengthen your back and give you a better posture. If you have any questions, please contact me at Fitmanfitness.com.