The back is an important part of the body, however many people tend to focus on the abdominal muscles and the other anterior muscle groups, completely forgetting about the back. Today 4 excellent exercises for your back and their function/ region of back they work will be given to you and the best part is…you can do them in the comfort of your own home.

1. The Dumbbell Exercise:Dumbbell excerise

a. Firmly place your left knee and left hand anchored on a flat bench. Your left hand should serve as support for your body.
b. Holding the dumbbell in the right hand, slowly row the dumbbell upwards until it’s above your torso, then slowly lower the dumbbell to a full extension. Repeat no less than 30 times.
NB: Maintain a tight core and flat back, contract your lats and biceps. You should feel a stretch throughout your upper back.

What Part Of The Back Is Being Worked?
 Target the upper and lower lats as well as the lower back muscles.

2. Quadruped Exercise: Quadruped Exercise

a. Sit on your hands and knees on an exercise mat.

b. The hands are directly beneath the shoulders. The knees are directly beneath the hips.
c. Extend one leg and lift the opposite arm until they are in line with the body.
d. Return to the starting position. Repeat no less than 30 times
e. Switch sides.
NB: The core is tight and the spine is neutrally aligned.
Function:
 Increases stability of core muscles and balance and thus improves posture
 It is generally good for looking after the whole back with an emphasis on spine and upper, middle and lower back.
 Improves strength and endurance of the muscles in your lower back and stomach.
 Helps treat and reduce risk of injury to the back

3. Plank ExercisePicture1
a. Assume raised plank position
b. Keeping body in straight line, raise left leg as high as possible off floor
c. Lower left leg; raise right leg. Repeat no less than 6 times on each leg

Function In Back:
 Builds strength in upper back muscles e.g. around shoulders even giving attention (which is seldom given) to shoulder blade muscles
 Reduce back pain
 Increase flexibility
 Improves balance and posture in working the necessary muscles needed to maintain proper posture e.g. the back, shoulders and neck.

*Doing planks regularly facilitates ability to sit or stand up straighter with ease.
4. Superman Exercise:IMG-20151018-00106IMG-20151018-00105

a. Lie face down on your stomach with arms and legs extended and keep your neck in a neutral position.
b. Keeping your arms and legs straight and relaxed with the torso stationary, simultaneously lift your arms and legs up toward the ceiling— back arches and arms and legs lift several inches off the floor.
c. Hold for two to five seconds and lower back down to complete one. Repeat 12 times
NB: make an elongated “u” shape with your body when lifting off the ground
What Part Of The Back Is Being Worked?
 Lower back region is being stretched and strengthened
 Glutes and hamstring indirectly are also worked

Post by: Zandile Myeki

References:

Dumbbell-exercises.com,. 2015. Dumbbell Exercises for the Back | Dumbbell-Exercises.com. http://www.dumbbell-exercises.com/exercises/back/ 17 October 2015.

Mercola.com,. 2015. 5 Health Benefits of Doing Plank Exercise. http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2014/12/05/5-plank-benefits.aspx#_edn2 17 October 2015.

Lumo,. 2013. Best Back Strengthening Exercises | Lumo. http://www.lumobodytech.com/best-back-strengthening-exercises/ 18 October 2015.

Men’s Fitness,. 2015. How to Do a Plank: A Single Move for Stronger Abs. http://www.mensfitness.com/weight-loss/burn-fat-fast/how-to-do-a-plank-a-single-move-for-stronger-abs 18 October 2015.

Bamboo Core Fitness,. 2015. Improve Your Core With Bird Dogs. http://bamboocorefitness.com/he-quadruped-alternating-arm-and-leg-extension-bird-doghorse-stance-exercise/ 18 October 2015.

Bamboo Core Fitness,. 2015. Improve Your Core With Bird Dogs. http://bamboocorefitness.com/he-quadruped-alternating-arm-and-leg-extension-bird-doghorse-stance-exercise/ 18 October 2015.

Ferguson, J. 2013. Superman Lower Back Exercise | LIVESTRONG.COM. LIVESTRONG.COM. http://www.livestrong.com/article/158862-superman-lower-back-exercise 18 October 2015

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