Secret to a Massive Back – The Grip Makes All the Difference
If you want to build a devastating and massive back that will wow the crowd you need to do some simple tweeks in your workout. Fundamentally, elbow position dictates back muscle emphasis. Grip width, in turn, determines elbow position. In the most simplistic terms, back training is all about grip width.
Bodybuilders can have problems training for the back due to the size and complexity of the back muscles. Also the role each muscle plays and the different angles you must work at to get each muscle involved. If you want to build the back, education is the key, that and hard work. But also a little knowledge can get you there also. The back is such a complicated and huge muscle when you think about it you really need to key in on all of the different sections, like the lats (upper an lower regions), middle and lower traps, rhomboids, teres major, rear delts and even erector spinae (lower back). The back is a huge muscle group that works together efficiently and building a wide and massive back is a thing of beauty.
Using a Wide Grip
It is amazing the difference your grip makes on which muscle region will be targeted. A wide grip (wider than shoulder width) will put your elbows in a position up and away from your body. This is the key grip position to work the uppermost and outter lats. This is what will create the massive, wide back that really brings out the V-shape that we all are looking for. By taking a wide grip you elbows will be up and out which really focuses on your lats. This also stretches the lats and a stretched muscle can contract more strongly. You can feel the muscle working when you do this properly.
Using a Narrow Grip
To develop the middle back and to really build the bulk and thickness of your back you need to use a narrow grip. A narrow grip is just a grip that is less than your shoulder width and try to keep your elbows close to your sides. By keeping your elbows close to your sides you are isolating the movement at your shoulder, and your shoulder blades, not the shoulder joint. This focuses on the middle back and the traps, teres major and rhomboid muscles. This really fills out the middle back and build strength.
Obviously almost every back exercise can be performed with a wide or narrow grip. But this is extremely important in that if focuses the workout on different regions of the back. Also your hand position can be changed such as you palms up or down or facing each other. This also changes the emphasis of the exercise. It may be slight, but it will target a different muscle.
Its important to work your lower back also. Strength in the lower back is not only aesthetically beautiful but important for your overall well being. Make sure you do back extensions, good mornings, or stiff-legged deadlifts which require you to bend at the waist. As you can see the grip is the key and you can change it up in a myriad of ways, and by changing the grip you can build your massive back.
Exercises for Wider Lats:
1. Wide-Grip Pulldowns
2. Wide-Grip Pull-Up
3. Wide-Grip Bent-Over Barbell Row
4. Wide-Grip Seated Cable Row
Exercises for Middle Back Thickness
1. Close-Grip Pulldown
2. Close-Grip Pull-Up
3. Close-Grip Seated Cable Row
4. Close-Grip T-Bar Row
5. One-Arm Dumbbell Row