Work Your Back with the Barbell Bent-over Row

When you want to make that big back work as a complete unit—here’s the move. Up there in terms of being a “big lift” like the bench press, squat, deadlift, and overhead press.

How to do a barbell bent-over row:

  1. With your hands at shoulders-width and with an overhead grip, hold a barbell in front of your body.
  2. Engage your core and slightly bend forward while keeping your back straight.
  3. Pull the barbell up towards your chest by using your lats.
  4. Squeeze at the top, slowly lower the weight, and repeat the process.

Work Your Back with the Low Cable Row

Another way to tap into the smaller details of the back. The seated position removes any additional support your may get from your legs during standing versions.

How to do a cable low row:

  1. Sit at a cable station with your slightly very slightly bent.
  2. Engage your core, keep your back straight, and shoulders blades retracted.
  3. Pull the cable towards your stomach while squeezing your lats.
  4. Pause at the finish position and repeat the process.

Work Your Shoulders with the Dumbbell High Pull

The dumbbell high pull will add a pop of muscular size to your shoulders while counter-balancing the overhead presses with more of a pull.

How to do a dumbbell high pull:

  1. While holding your dumbbells, one in each hand, stand about shoulder-width apart.
  2. Core your core.
  3. Explosively extend your hips while pulling the dumbbells up and away from your body.
  4. Lift the weight no higher than your chest.
  5. Slowly lower the weight back down and repeat.

Related article: Total Body Workout With 7 Kettlebell Exercises

Work Your Core with the Cable Woodchop

When you want to give your core a little more, adding the twisting and turning of a cable wood chop is a good option. Similarly to the hanging knee/leg raise, you’ll feel it after a single set.

How to do a cable woodchop:

  1. Stand next to a cable or pulley station.
  2. Engage your core.
  3. Pull the cable up and away from your body while keeping your arms straight.
  4. Slowly lower the weight back and repeat.

Work Your Back with the Cable Pullover

This move adds an element of stretching to the pull motion. That stretch will hit the muscles of your back differently than a row, pull up, or pulldown.

How to do a cable pullover:

  1. Stand in front of a cable or pulley station.
  2. Set the pulley to the top peg.
  3. Engage your core.
  4. Keep your shoulders back and chest up.
  5. With your arms straight but with a slight bend, pull the weight down towards your thighs.
  6. Slowly return the weight back to the top and repeat.

Related article: The 10 Best Warm-Up Stretch Exercises To Do Before Your Workout