Back to Basics

Most of us don’t really put that much emphasis on strengthening our backs; usually the focus when working out is on our abs, arms, and legs. However, strengthening your back muscles, in addition to your abs, creates muscular core balance. Your back muscles are the ones that actually keep the body upright by supporting the spine. The upper back muscles prevent neck and shoulder pain, while the middle and lower back muscles prevent lower back pain.

Below are 3 do-anywhere workouts to strengthen and support your back.

1. Deadlift


Start with your feet hip-width apart, dumbbells in hands in front of you with an overhand grip.

Squat, pushing your hips back, ensuring your back is flat.  Make sure your knees do not pass your toes.Slowly return to standing position. Repeat 10-12 times, for 3 sets.

2. Bent Over Row


Holding a dumbbell in each hand, straight in front of you, palms facing inward. Stand with your knees slightly bent, feet hip-width apart. Hinge at the hips, keeping your back flat.

Keep your elbows close to your body, squeeze your shoulder blades together, bending and lifting your elbows until they pass your back.Repeat the action of lowering and lifting the weights 15 times, for 3 sets.

3. Lateral Raises


Start in squat position with your feet hip-width apart, dumbbells in front of you, and palms facing inward. Make sure your back is flat and knees do not pass your toes.Raise your arms to shoulder height, keeping your elbows slightly bent.Repeat 10-12 times, for 3 sets.