For a beginner, it’s helpful to split the various body parts up and look at each one individually. For the purposes of the following articles we will break them down into the areas listed below:
In this article we’ll concentrate on the back and a newcomer to the gym (and even more experienced regulars) can often find themselves neglecting the back in favour of the arms and chest routines. The back needs just as much attention as the rest of the body though so don’t forget it. As always, warm up properly before starting any weight lifting.
- Lat Pull Down – there’s a specific machine for this and it’s exactly as shown in
the picture. Load up a appropriate weight (for 8 – 12 reps), grab the bar and sit down. Keep your back straight at all times and slowly pull the bar down to just below chin level. Raise it back to the starting position slowly. That’s one rep completed. Perform three sets completing 8 – 12 repetitions (reps) with each exercise.
- Dumb Bell Row – you only need a bench and an appropriate weight for this exercise but again, it must be carried out properly – the back should be kept straight at all times. To start with use a light weight to make sure you have the correct technique. When exercising with the right arm, place the left knee and left hand on the bench as shown. Keeping the back straight and horizontal slowly raise the weight until the elbow is at 90°. Perform three sets completing 8 – 12 repetitions (reps) with each exercise.
- Pull Ups – lastly a good all round exercise that is especially useful for your back muscles. This is a hard exercise but there’s no reason not to give it a go, even if you can only manage one or two reps. You will be lifting you’re whole body weight in the process. In the most basic version, use a horizontal bar and grab it at shoulder width with your fingers facing towards you. Now just pull yourself up until your chin is level with the bar then lower yourself again. If you find it very hard, your gym may have a machine which can assist you in this exercise. Perform three sets completing as many reps as possible each set.