Sunday, December 13, 2015

Two of My Favorite Exercises For Upper Back Strength

I'm in my 50s and I know that strength training is the most effective way to build and maintain my muscle mass, and to keep my strength.  I strength train 3 to 4 times each week and I can honestly say, I'm stronger than I was in my 20s.  It's never too late to reap the benefits of this form of exercise, people in their 90s show improvements in muscle size and strength when start to lift weights on a weekly basis.

Below are two of my favorite exercises for keeping my upper back strong.

Lat Pulldown Close Grip

The close grip lat pulldown further strengthens and develops your upper back muscles.  First, sit down and adjust the thigh pad to a position that firmly fits over your thighs.   Next, grip the triangle attachment, sit down and place your knees firmly under the thigh pad.  Begin with your arms fully extended and your chest up high.  This is your start position.  Slowly pull your hands down to the top of your chest while squeezing your shoulder blades together.  Slowly return the bar to the start position.  Exhale as you pull the weight toward you, and inhale as you return the weight to the start position.

 Upright Row

The upright row strengthens and develops the top portion of your trapezius -the muscle at the top of your shoulders that attaches to your neck.  Perform this exercise at the cable machine.  Attach a straight bar, and placing the pulley at the lowest level.  Grip the bar at a position where your hands are about an inch apart, and stand upright with your arms fully extended.  Position your feet shoulder width apart, slightly bend your knees and lift your chest high.  This is your start position.  Pull your hands to the top of your chest, while keeping your elbows slightly higher than your hands.  Then return to the start position.  Exhale as you pull the weight upward, and inhale as you return to the start position.

Checkout my Beginners through Advanced Strength Training programs by clicking on this link: Forever Fit and Firm