Tag Archives: pull ups

5 Body Weight Exercises for a Chiseled Back

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

Body weight conditioning #Bodyweightconditioning has always been an excellent way of training ones’ body, it requires little to no equipment and exercise routines can be done at almost any location. Body weight conditioning often restores our commitment to fitness and makes us concentrate on our form throughout each movement pattern. In this blog post, I share 5 body weight excises that will help you chisel out your back.

Complete 3 sets with 15 repetitions of the 5 exercises listed below with 1:30 minute rest periods between sets.

1) Pull-up

pull - up

  • The pull-up is performed with a palms facing forward position.
  • The body is suspended by the arms, gripping something, and pulls up.
  • The wrists remain in neutral (straight, neither flexed nor extended) position, the elbows flex and the shoulder adducts and/or extends to bring the elbows to or sometimes behind the torso.
  • The knees may be bent by choice or if the bar is not high enough. Bending the knees may reduce pendulum-type swinging.
  • Repeat

2) Inverted row

Inverted row

  • Lay flat on your back under a bar, a table or other sturdy surface
  • Grab your bar or bar substitute with your arms fully extended and your palms facing away from you.
  • Keep your body straight and lift yourself up. Slowly return to your starting position. You can make this easier by sitting on your hips or harder by raising your feet on a bench.

3) Pike push-up

Pike push-up

  • Start from a classic pushup position. Keep your legs straight and walk your hands back so you are in a pike position.
  • Your upper body and lower body should be at about a 90 degree angle.
  • Extend the arms overhead so that they are in line with your spine and reaching straight out from the shoulders.
  • Contract the core. Bend the elbows and lower yourself down until your head almost contacts the ground. Press back up.

4) Isometric wide grip pull ups

Isometric wide grip pull up’s

  • Set your hands palms down and facing away from you at a wide grip on the bar.
  • Pull yourself up so that your chin is above the bar and hold the position. Try to hold each repetition for the same amount of time.

5) Superman’s

Superman’s

  • Lay face down with your arms straight ahead of you.
  • In a controlled motion, lift your upper body and legs off the floor.
  • Hold the final position for 5 seconds before slowly returning to the first position.Superman’s

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Super Bowl of “Back” Exercises

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

With an incredible Super Bowl XLIX now behind us, we may now focus on our own epic battle of crowning the “2” most effective back exercises. Our earlier posts set up this discussion, so if you’ve missed them and haven’t commented, check out………

From all of our readers comments it was clear that we narrow this match-up to “2” back exercises, that will compete for the @FitnessPropelled “Best Back Exercise”. The match-up is between the #Deadlift vs #Pull-Up’s.

Deadlifts

01-fitness-motivation-sexy-women-deadlifting The deadlift is a compound movement that works a variety of muscles groups:

  • The grip strength (finger flexors) and the lower back (erector spinae) work isometrically to keep the bar held in the hands and to keep the spine from rounding.
  • The gluteus maximus and hamstrings work to extend the hip joint.
  • The quadriceps work to extend the knee joint.
  • The adductor magnus works to stabilize the legs.

The deadlift activates a large number of individual muscles, in particular the back being:

How to do it:

  1. Make sure that your feet are hip width apart.
  2. Bend at the hip to grip the bar at shoulder width, allowing your shoulder blades to protract.
  3. Lower your hips and bend knees until your shins contact the bar.
  4. Look forward, keep chest up and back arched, and begin driving through the heels to move the weight upward.
  5. After the bar passes the knees, aggressively pull it back, bringing your shoulder blades together as you drive your hips forward into the bar.
  6. Lower the bar by bending at the hips and guiding it to the floor.

Pull-ups

index A pull-up is an upper-body compound pulling exercise. The pull-up is performed with a palms facing forward position.

  • A pull up is a closed-chain bodyweight movement where the body is suspended by the arms, gripping something, and pulls up.
  • The wrists remain in neutral (straight, neither flexed nor extended) position, the elbows flex and the shoulder adducts and/or extends to bring the elbows to or sometimes behind the torso.
  • The knees may be bent by choice or if the bar is not high enough. Bending the knees may reduce pendulum-type swinging.

The pull up engages numerous individual muscles. Again, with a focus on the back the pull up targets

How to do it:

  1. Step up and grasp bar with wide grip palms facing away.
  2. Pull body up until chin is above bar. Lower body until arms and shoulders are fully extended. Repeat.

Which of these two top notch back exercises gets your vote and why? Leave your comment below…..

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Sources:

  • Bodybuilding.com
  • Wikipedia.com

6 “Back” Defining Exercises

back By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

When looking from behind and we see the structured anatomy of a well-defined back, we cannot help but want to see that individual’s front side holds in store. In order to acquire such features it takes a fitness artist’s touch to cultivate such a sculpted look.

Let’s take a look at the anatomy the #FitnessArtist must sculpt.

  • The lats and trapezius (aka traps) span the largest area, running from the base of the neck all the way down to the hips. They make up the bulk of the back’s muscle mass and generate the most force. The traps are not just the humps on top of your shoulders, they also dominate the inner part of the upper back.
  • The rhomboids, infraspinatus, and teres are smaller muscles that run diagonally across the width of the upper back. Aesthetically, they add definition and distinct cuts behind the scapula (your shoulder blades). They are typically targeted while working the lats and traps (via rows, pull-ups, etc.).
  • The erector spinae runs vertically in columns along the vertebrae and makes up most of the muscle in the lower back. It is a critical element in all-around core strength.

Exercises: (3 sets for 15 repetitions), progression set add weight, reduce rep #.

1) Pull-ups w/ weighted plates

Pull-ups w. weighted platesPrimary Muscles: Lats, posterior deltoids, rhomboids, infraspinatus, elevator scapulae, etc.

  1. Secure weight belt around hips and add desired weight.
  2. Step up and grasp bar with overhand wide grip.
  3. Pull body up until chin is above bar. Lower body until arms and shoulders are fully extended. Repeat.

2) Core ball prone extensions w/ weight plate

Core ball prone extensions w. weight platePrimary Muscles: Erector spinae, iliocostalis, longissimus, spinalis

  1. Prop yourself up on a core ball holding a weight plate with arms crossed to secure the plate.
  2. Without arching your back, slowly bend your torso forward until it forms a 45º angle with your legs.
  3. Squeeze your lower back and raise your body back up to starting position. Repeat.

3) Lat pull downs (narrow, wide, palms facing grips)

Lat pull downsPrimary Muscles: Lats, trapezius, posterior deltoids, middle back, erector spinae

  1. Find a lat pull down machine with interchangeable clips. Place two hand grips on it.
  2. With palms facing one another, lean back 70 degrees and pull down sliding your hands alongside your rib cage, then out wide to 90 degree hinges, then palms facing you narrow pulls. Repeat.

4) Single arm cable rows

Single arm rowsPrimary Muscles: Upper back, trapezius, latissimus dorsi, erector spinae, etc.

  1. Sit on a secured bench and grasp cable stirrup with one hand. Straighten lower back and position knees with slight bend.
  2. Pull cable attachment to side of torso, slightly twisting through waist. Pull shoulder back and push chest forward during contraction. Return until arm is extended and shoulder is stretched forward. Repeat.
  3. Continue with opposite arm.

5) Weight plate lifts

Weight plate liftsPrimary Muscles: Posterior deltoids, upper back

  1. Choose a weight plate and stand with your feet around shoulder width apart.
  2. Hold the weight plate with your palms facing one another at the 3 and 9 o’clock positions. Let the weight plate rest on your thighs. Straighten your back, tense your mid section and pull your shoulders back, taking the weight off your thighs and holding it about 5 inches from your body. This is the starting position.
  3. Keeping a slight bend in your elbows, raise the plate up until your arms are parallel to the floor.
  4. Pause, and then slowly lower the plate back to the starting position. Repeat.

6) Bosu ball loaded push-ups

Bosu ball loaded push-upsPrimary Muscles: Pectoralis major

  1. Lie prone on floor with hands slightly wider than shoulder width placed on the dynamic side of a bosu balance trainer.
  2. Raise body up off floor by extending arms with body straight.
  3. Keeping body straight, lower body to the bosu ball by bending arms to 90 degrees and then hold your weight for 15 seconds. Repeat.

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Sources:

http://www.muscleandstrength.com/

– GoogleImages

Shed Bra Bulge with these 6 Moves

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

As a certified personal trainer holding a strong base of female clientele, I am consistently asked how I train clientele to get rid of “Bra Bulge”. The first times I had heard this, as a naive male, I did not understand the question. After indulging myself into the term, I realized that this area between the armpits and chest just tends to be under toned and therefore, a bit flabby.  “Bra Bulge” muscle groups include the pectoralis muscles (chest), latissimus dorsi (back), triceps and biceps (upper arm), and deltoid (shoulders). When dealing with “Bra Bulge” this leads to a focused area that many female clientele want to target and tone.

So, from implementing a collection of exercises that will address this area of concern, here are my six exercises to turn “Bra Bulge” into a thing of the past.  Do each exercise for a duration of 30 seconds / repeat when only utilizing one side and complete 3 sets.

  • 1) Squat w/ triceps kickback
    • As you lower into a squat, press weights back for a kickback, then bend arms as you stand back up
      • This move works: glutes, quadriceps, triceps
  • 2) Dumbbell hammer grip rows with a bench
    • Lay flat down on your stomach on a bench, arms straight out down towards the floor, knees bent, feet flat on the ground. Hold weights in your hands. Perform a row by pulling the weights up to your ribs, forearms remaining perpendicular to the ground, squeezing your shoulder blades as hard as you can and actively opening the chest at the top of the movement. Return to base position. Repeat.
      • This move works: Latissimus dorsi, posterior deltoid, trapezius, rhomboids biceps brachii
  • 3) Hanging arm curl
    • Rest one foot, knee and hand all on the same side of a flat bench, and stand with the other foot flat on the ground. The arm that is not resting on the bench but should be hanging towards the ground, holding your weight. Make sure your spine is flat and parallel to the ground, chin tucked in, with your eyes trained on the weight. Perform a s bicep curl, bending the arm at the elbow and bringing the weight up towards your face. Pause for a second at the top of the movement, and then bring your arm back to starting position. Repeat.
      • This move works: Abs, hip flexors, and biceps
  • 4) T raises
    • Grasp a pair of dumbbells and stand tall with feet about shoulder-width apart and arms hanging down at your sides. Rotate your hands so that your palms are facing away from your body. Begin exercise by raising the dumbbells away from your sides to shoulder height so that you from a T-shape. Lower the weight back down to your sides. Repeat.
      • This move works: Trapezius, posterior deltoids, rhomboids
  • 5) Delt Raises
    • Grab a pair of dumbbells and stand with feet hip width apart, knees slightly bent. Shift your hips back as you lower your torso until you are parallel with the ground. Turn palms so they face one another, bend elbows and lift weights up to shoulder height. Repeat.
      • This move works: Posterior deltoid, lateral deltoid, levator scapulae, brachialis, biceps brachii
  • 6) Assisted pull ups with a platform
    • Step up and grasp bar with wide overhand grip. Step down onto assistance lever or platform. Pull body up until neck reaches height of hands. Lower body until arms and shoulders are fully extended. Repeat.
      • This move works: Latissimus dorsi, teres major, lower trapezius, rhomboids, levator scapulae

It is my hopes that these 6 exercises deliver the results you have been seeking when it comes to shedding away “Bra Bulge”. Enjoy.

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Sources:

Back Workout: 6 Moves to Blast Annoying Bra Bulge – By Amy Marturana http://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/back-workout-6-moves-blast-annoying-bra-bulge

7 exercises to get rid of Bra Bulge – Amy Marturana – http://www.youbeauty.com/body-fitness/galleries/exercises-to-get-rid-of-bra-bulge#1