My bias towards training has always been about building a big strong back relative to pushing overhead or pushing in front because many of the clients that I see in clinical practice who present with training related injuries or niggles often come about or are compounded by poor programming. When I say poor programming, I mean there is often an imbalance between push and pull movements. Many of these clients present with a 1:1 push to pull ratio for exercises and sets. When it comes to selecting which back exercises one should incorporate into their program, my non negotiables are:

  • Horizontal pulling & variations
  • Vertical pulling & variations
  • Open arcs & variations
  • Face pull variations
  • Straight arm pull down variations
  • Shrugs

Horizontal Pull & Variations

This includes any of the following:

  • Seated row (cable based)
  • Chest supported row (bb or db)
  • Bent over row (bb) or single arm row (db)
  • Horizontal bodyweight row (bb, trx)

Vertical Pull & Variations

This includes any of the following:

  • Chin up / Pull up
  • Lat pull down (cable)