Often times, people neglect doing exercises to strengthen their back. Strengthening the back is important to keep a good posture, keep your spine healthy, and avoid a lot of injuries that could affect the back. One way of getting a stronger back is by doing crossfit back workout.
Crossfit is a fitness training method where various functional movements are combined and constantly performed at high intensity into a timed workout.
Crossfit workouts are based on functional movements that reflect the movements in certain sports such as running, gymnastics, rowing, weightlifting, and a whole lot more. The idea of Crossfit is to maximize the amount of workout in the shortest amount of time.
Crossfit back workout is a set of different workouts designed to strengthen the back. It is essential to know the proper technique in executing the different exercises to avoid having injuries and to maximize your workout. These are the following Crossfit Back Workouts:
Crossfit Back Exercises
1. Barbell Deadlifts
This exercise is good for strengthening the lower back. Additional body parts are involved in performing this exercise such as the abs, forearms, calves, hamstrings, quadriceps, hip and glutes flexors, and the upper back and lower traps.
Equipment you need: Barbell
1. Put the barbell on the floor. Make sure that there are no obstacles surrounding it.
2. Stand in front of the barbell with the legs 4 to 6 inches from the bar.
3. The feet should be shoulder width apart. The feet can either be pointed straight or turned slightly outwards.
4. Squat down while keeping the back straight and gripping the bar with an overhand grip. The hand grips should be shoulder width apart.
5. Keep the arms fully extended and stand up with the barbell.
6. The shoulders and hips should rise together and the back should be kept straight while lifting the barbell.
7. When you reach the top of the lift and are standing straight, slightly rotate the shoulders back until a slight stretch is felt in them.
8. Put the barbell back to the floor using the same squatting movement used in lifting it.
2. Back/Hip Extension
This exercise strengthens the lower back and helps improve the performance in other lifts. This exercise can be done using a glute ham developer or back extension bench. Aside from your back, your hamstrings and your hip and glutes flexors are also involved.
Equipment you need: Hyper Extension Bench
1. Lie face down on a glute ham developer with the lower hips and upper thighs on the support pad. Make sure that the body is parallel to the ground when in your starting position. The body should be in a straight line from head to toe.
2. Lock the ankles on the footpads.
3. Put your arms either across the chest, at the side or behind your head.
4. Bend the hips towards the floor using your back and abdominal muscles until such time that the upper body is perpendicular to the ground. Inhale while lowering your upper body.
5. Exhale while going back to the starting position.
6. Repeat the exercise.
3. Single Arm Dumbbell Bench Rows
This exercise is good for the upper back, lower back, and lower traps. It also involves the biceps, abs, and shoulders.
1. Put a dumbbell on the left side of a flat bench.
2. The right knee should be knelt on the bench with the right foot on the edge of the bench.
3. Bend the torso from the waist until the upper part of the body is parallel to the ground while putting the right hand in front of you to support your body.
4. Use your left hand to pick up the dumbbell using an overhand grip. The palm should be facing you.
5. Keep the lower back straight.
6. Pull the dumbbell towards the side of the chest using the back muscles while keeping the upper arm close to your side. Exhale while doing this.
7. Squeeze the back muscles while holding the position for one count.
8. Go back to the starting position while inhaling.
9. Do 10-12 repetitions on one side before switching to the other side.
4. Low Cable Back Rows
This exercise is good for the lower back. It involves other body parts such as the upper back, shoulders, biceps, and lower traps. You need a rowing machine to do this.
Equipment you need: Rowing Machine
1. Sit on the rowing machine and put the feet on the footpads provided while keeping the knees slightly bent.
2. Lean forward while keeping the back straight. Grip the handles using both hands. The arms should be fully extended.
3. Pull your back a little until the torso is at a 90 degree angle from the legs while maintaining the full extension of the arms.
4. The back should be arched a little and the chest should be pushed out. This is the starting position.
5. Slightly bend your back a little while pulling the handles back towards you. Squeeze the back muscles while doing this.
6. Keep the arms close to the sides until the hands reach the abdomen. Exhale while doing this.
7. Pause for one count.
8. Inhale while returning to the starting position.
5. Alternating Reach and Kickbacks
This exercise is good for the lower back and the abs but it also involves the hip flexors and the glutes.
Equipment you need: Yoga Mat
1. Start on all fours with the knees directly under the hips and the wrists directly under the shoulders.
2. Keep the spine neutral and engage your core. Pull your shoulder blades towards the hips.
3. Stretch the left leg backwards making sure that it is in line with the hips while stretching the right arm at the same time until both the left leg and the right arm are parallel to the ground. The head and the shoulders should always be aligned.
4. Go back to the starting position by lowering the leg and arm. Repeat the exercise switching to the other leg and arm.
6. Close Grip Pullups
This exercise primarily benefits the lower back particularly the latissimus dorsi but it’s also good for the forearms, biceps, upper back, and lower traps.
Equipment you need: Pullup Bar
1. Hold the bar with your palms facing towards you and the arms close together.
2. The arms should be fully extended.
3. Cross the ankles and bend the knees.
4. Pull the body up until the elbows are completely bent and are close to the body. Your chin should slightly touch the bar.
5. Lower the body until the arms and legs are fully extended just like in the starting position.
7. Extended Arms and Legs Lifts
This exercise is good for the lower back and abs. This is also called the superman exercise level 3.
Equipment you need: Yoga Mat
1. Using a mat, lie face down with the arms fully extended above the head and the legs fully extended behind.
2. Lift off the chest from the ground while lifting both the arms and legs off the floor at the same time. You can do this by arching your back and squeezing your glutes. Only the lower abdomen and the top of the quads should be in contact with the ground.
3. Hold for 2 counts while squeezing the obliques and abdominals.
4. Go back to the starting position and repeat.
8. Push Ups
This exercise is good for the whole body as long as it’s done correctly.
1. Position your hands on the floor shoulder width apart making sure that the hands are directly below the shoulders.
2. Extend the legs towards the back and stand on the balls of the feet.
3. Slowly lower the body down bending the arms until the body is 1 to 2 inches above the ground. The elbows should be at a 45 degree angle to the body.
4. Push yourself back up using your triceps and chest.
9. Single-arm Bent Over Lateral Raises
This exercise can help remove fat on the lower back.
Equipment you need: Dumbbell
1. Start on all fours holding a dumbbell on one hand.
2. Put the weight of the body on the free hand that is not holding the dumbbell.
3. Raise the arm holding the dumbbell until it is straight and parallel to the ground. There should be tension felt at the lats.
4. Lower your hand back down.
5. Transfer the dumbbell on the other hand.
6. Repeat the same exercise using the other hand.
10. Single-arm Side Dumbbell Raise
This exercise is good for the upper back and the middle of the shoulders.
Equipment you need: Dumbbell
1. Hold a dumbbell on one hand.
2. Stand with the feet hip width apart. Put the other arm on your hip.
3. Tighten your core. Slowly raise one arm up until it is straight towards the side. The palms should be facing the ground. Hold this for 3 seconds. You should feel a little tension on your shoulders while doing this.
4. Gently lower the dumbbell to the side of your body just like in the starting position.
5. Repeat the same exercise using the other arm.
11. Wide-Grip Lat Pulldowns
This exercise is primarily for the middle and lower back and the lats but it can also affect the biceps and the abs.
Equipment you need: Lat Pulldown Machine
1. Set up a cable station with a straight bar attached to the top pulley.
2. Sit on the seat facing the cable station. Keep the feet flat on the floor. They should be planted firmly on the ground.
3. Hold the bar as wide and as comfortable as possible using overhand grip.
4. Slightly lean your back maintaining a straight back.
5. Pull the bar towards your chest using the shoulders. The elbows should be tuck on the sides of the body.
6. Slightly squeeze the shoulders together and hold the position for 1 count.
7. Go back to the starting position by putting the elbows forward and relaxing the shoulders.
8. Repeat the exercise.
12. TRX Suspension Strap Rows
This exercise primarily targets the lower back but it can also indirectly target the biceps, shoulders, and abs.
Equipment you need: Suspension Straps
1. Get a pair of suspension straps and attach them to a sturdy bar. Stand facing the suspension straps, bracing the lower back and tightening the core.
2. Lean back and allow the suspension straps to hold the weight of your body. The arms should be straight. The body should also be in a straight line from head to toe.
3. Pull yourself up using your back while tightening your core.
4. Squeeze the back muscles and gently lower your body.
5. Repeat the exercise.
13. Straight Arm Pulldowns
This exercise strengthens the middle back and lats but it could also affect the lower back.
Equipment you need: Lat Pulldown Machine
1. Stand with the feet shoulder width apart. Keep the back straight and tighten the core. Raise your arms and reach for the pull-down bar. Grab it using a wide grip.
2. Keep the arms straight but do not lock the elbows. Pull the bar down to the hips while exhaling and flexing the lats.
3. Hold for 1 count and go back to the starting position. Do not allow the weight to rest against the stack.
14. Kettlebell Swing
Kettlebell swing is a popular workout.It can help develop lower back and core strength. Choose the weight that is manageable for you, not too light and not too heavy.
Equipment you need: Kettlebell
1. Pick the kettlebell that suits you and put it on the floor between your legs.
2. Stand with your feet hip width apart.
3. Keep the back, shoulders, and chest up high.
4. Slightly squat down to grab the handle of the kettlebell using both hands with the palms facing towards you. The knees should not go beyond your feet as you bend to pick up the kettlebell.
5. Stand up straight with the kettlebell while keeping the shoulders on your back. Your shoulders should be far from your ears.
6. Slightly bend the knees and push the bottom out behind you and transfer the weight of your body to the heels as if you are about to jump.
7. Swing the kettlebell up to your chest or over your head if you can in an explosive motion while keeping the arms straight and using the power of the legs aside from pulling the kettlebell with just the arms. This is important to get the momentum.
8. Tighten the core and butt once you reach the apex.
9. Try to control the movement of the kettlebell as it goes back down.
10. Use the hips and rock it back and forth to help you gain momentum.
Crossfit workouts can target the back either directly or indirectly. What’s important here is to mix several of these exercises doing several repetitions per exercise before moving on to the next exercise. You can perform these exercises targeting a specific time to finish them or by setting a specific number of sets for each exercise.