10 Back Of Body Exercises For Moms
When it comes to working out, there is such a variety of styles to chose from that it can often be overwhelming for anyone just getting into the game (check out how to start working out from scratch). One thing all workouts should have in common though is a focus on the posterior chain (the back of the body). This is even more important for moms!
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Targeting the back of body has become quite the passion of mine. If you ask any of my training clients, you’ll hear that I am a bit obsessed with hitting the back of the body.
The reason for this is that we spend so much of our time rounded forward at desks, cars, couches etc that it makes us weak and full of injuries.
With this lifestyle comes a lot of back pain. In part because we’re constantly rounded forward and in part because the back of our bodies are weak (check out the specifics on back pain and how to fix it here).
Part of the solution to this weakness is to strengthen the posterior chain!
Moms especially need help in this department because throughout pregnancy our center of gravity shifts drastically to accomodate our ever growing bellies. Couple that with how we compensate to hold our babies and it’s no wonder new moms are stiff and sore.
One of the solutions is to improve strength in the back of body in order to fix postural issues and make these demands easier.
By strengthening the posterior chain (using exercises like the hip hinge) you’ll help prevent injury, become stronger and improve your day to day function.. plus it makes your booty look good and who doesn’t like that??
Below are the top 10 back of body exercises I use with clients:
Exercise #1 Glute Bridge
I hope you saw this one coming! Glute bridges are one of my favorite exercises for teaching engagement and without engagement you’ll accomplish little.
You cannot progress if you don’t understand how to lift your hips into hyper extension with your bum muscles and not your low back. These can be done bodyweight, with dumbbells, barbells, bands or unilaterally. So many options!
I love the glute bridge because it’s simple but insanely effective. Training the glute muscles is beyond important for your body to function properly on a day to day basis.
Exercise #2 Hip Thrust
Moving on from the glute bridge is the hip thrust. Like the bridge, the hip thrust can be one with a band, barbell, dumbbell, single leg.. the list goes on.
This posterior exercise allows your glutes a bit more range of motion and thus you can hit them slightly harder. Whenever you’re hoping to target the glute muscles (which should be always!) I find that mini bands + weights works insanely well.
Exercise #3 Bentover Row
A great exercise to work the upper or mid back (depending on your grip). Having a strong back will help you stand more upright and remove some of the tension from your low back.
This position also helps reinforce the hip hinge position which is crucial when targeting the back of body muscles. The row itself can be done with dumbbells, barbells or a resistance band (red or purple).
Exercise #4 Romanian Deadlift/American Deadlift
Learning how to hip hinge is so so important for daily tasks and to protect your back. Once the movement is learned, there are countless ways to target the hamstrings and glute muscles.
This exercise will not only challenge your legs but your low back as well. And trust me… you use it! Have you ever had to bend over (hinge!) and pick your kid up out of a freaking foam pit?! I have, and I was thankful for my strong ass legs when in a crazy deficit position!
Exercise #5 Inverted Row
Trx rows are one of my favorites. Not only do they challenge your back but they also require complete stability throughout the rest of your body.
Learning to use your back muscles to pull is a skill everyone should have. TRX straps make this super easy. I personally love these straps because it’s one of the few pieces of at home workout equipment in which you can target your back muscles. I also like that it can be adjusted to suit any fitness level- so great for beginners!
Also, learn to hip thrust properly! Bret Contreras is probably the biggest known expert on this subject and he has an awesome demo and explanation of the thrust here.
Exercise #6 Deadlift
I love deadlifts. Really and truly I think conventional deadlifts kick butt (pun intended!) no matter which variation you chose (read more about why I love them here).
Picking Sh*t up off the floor not only makes you feel like a badass but it does everything good for your posterior chain. It hits and challenges every muscle in the back of your body and is one of the best ways to boost your overall strength.
It is however a complex movement so seek help before trying yourself!
Exercise #7 Pull Aparts
Pull aparts aparts are a great exercise for absolutely everyone. They’re simple, require only a red resistance band and they’re effective.
The pull apart helps improve shoulder stability as well as movement. They also help open up the chest while targeting the back so they’re an all a round win. I like to use pull aparts in my warm ups because they’re just so effective.
Exercise #8 Pull Through
The cable (or band!) pull through is an amazing back of the body exercise that of course makes use of…the hip hinge! I like this exercise because it’s low impact but requires a lot of glute activation.
If you’re looking to improve your back side, this is a great option. And strong glutes means better posture means less back pain.
Exercise #9 Standing Band Hip Thrust
This exercise is another low impact one which targets the glutes really effectively. Personally, it’s one of my favorites while pregnant because come the third trimester, glute bridging and hip thrusting are pretty much out (check out a fun preggo workout here)
Exercise #10 Face Pulls
These beauties work the upper back and shoulders. They definitely don’t feel comfortable the first few times you do them but they’re worth it!
They are an awesome posterior movement and most mamas will benefit extremely from pulling more frequently.
The standing band hip thrust works well for beginners and advanced fitness junkies alike. It’s effective, so do it.
Don’t forget to pin these awesome back of body exercises!
Working the posterior chain, back of the body, is crucial for moms and non moms alike. Having a strong posterior chain helps prevent injuries, makes day to day tasks easier and helps correct posture. Personally, I strive for about a 3:1 ratio between back of the body exercises and front of the body. Work the posterior chain often and make it count- it’s worth it.
Looking for more fitness tips? Check out Why Moms Should Workout At Home and Four Ab Exercises Better Than Sit Ups