Staying Fit and Keeping Your Muscles Lean Part 3: Building Your Upper and Middle Back Muscles Core Without Weights – 2 Helpful Exercise Tips

Before proceeding with your back exercise please take about 5 minutes to stretch your back muscles along with your other body parts.

There are 3 main muscles in the back. The first is called – Trapezius Muscles – upper back, the second is called – Latissimus Dorsi Muscles – middle of the back; and the third is called – Spinae Muscles – the lower back. But in this piece of the puzzle we will only focus on the first two of the three back muscles.

The following is your back exercise program to work 2 major (upper and middle) muscle groups:

Back Exercise 1 – V Shape Push Ups:

You need to position your body in a regular push up position and you will then extend your arms of your shoulders (about 1 foot). Your arms should be in a V shape. Your feet can be together and/or slightly apart. Just as you would perform your everyday regular push up you do the same here as well but only this time you proceed in a V shape form. When you will be near the floor, hold for 5 seconds and then push your body up. It is important to do it slowly and you will feel your back muscles (mainly the upper and middle muscles) being worked.  

In addition, once you will find yourself comfortable with the above mentioned exercise you can move onto practicing the V shape push ups by placing your feet on top of an object – either your bed and/or chair and perform the exercise from there. It is best to have your feet placed on a hard object as you will receive better performance. You will perform the exercise exactly as mentioned above with the same set of reps, however this exercise is much more difficult so you can reduce the number of reps by 5 per each set. Doing the V shape push ups from an object will build your back muscles (upper and middle) much faster and your muscles should feel sore the next day (if they don’t it means that you are not following your routine properly).

Back Exercise 2 – V Shape Pull Ups:

The pull ups exercise requires you to pull your entire body upwards. Just as you perform the V shape push ups, you would perform the pull ups. Only this time you would place your hands in a V shape position by gripping onto a bar and your feet would be off the ground. It is best to have your elbows slightly bend when holding the bar with your hands and your knees should be bend in a 45 degree angle while your feet crossed one over the other should be off the floor handing in the air. You can hold the bar with an underhand grip and/or gripping it by placing your thumb on top of your pointy finger however, the underhand grip is more commonly used in practice.

Pull yourself up and hold for 5 seconds and slowly release when going down. Breathe in during each pull up and breathe out when realising your body downward. When pulling yourself touch the bar with your chin and always keep your head up (meaning your eyes should be looking up) never down. Some experts say that by touching the bar with your chest you will build the upper and middle back muscles faster as well as you will gain better results. It is more difficult to do the pull ups by touching the bar with your chest. Try it and see for yourself.

If in your house and/or apartment you don’t have a place which you can use to do pull ups you can buy a so-called pull-up bar and in any store that carries sporting/gym working out equipment and/or simply google it online by typing pull-up bar. You should have no problem finding one.

Practice Back Exercise 1 and 2 every other day. You can switch them over as you wish – whatever works best for you. Please follow the steps: first week do 3 sets of 10-15 reps; second week do 3 sets of 15-20 reps; third week do 3 sets of 20-25 reps and the fourth week do 3 sets of 25-30 reps. Between your sets take no more than 2 to 3 minutes break.

Please also note that both V shape push ups and pull ups can be practiced outside if the weather conditions permit to it.