New Year's Resolution: Mass Building - Back (Part Three)!

Is your New Year's resolution aimed towards gaining overall mass, especially in the back? Learn and use the most effective methods by utilizing the following back anatomy descriptions, exercises, and workout plan!

Is your New Year's resolution aimed towards gaining mass? Are you tired of being skinny? Are you stuck at a plateau? If you've answered yes to any of those questions, read on to learn about the most effective method to pack on lean body mass, in an easy to understand, step by step format.

Everything from anatomy, exercises, sets, reps, and workout plans is included, along with advice on nutrition and supplementation towards the end of this 12 part series, which will ensure you reach your goals faster than ever before!

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Today's focus is on the back muscles, which primarily consist of the latissimus dorsi, teres major, teres minor, rhomboid major, rhomboid minor, and erector spinae.

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Back Anatomy
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Let's first look at the anatomy of the back, so you know exactly which muscles you will be training.

arrow Latissimus Dorsi

    The latissimus dorsi originates from the thoracolumbar aponeurosis, the inferior 6 thoracic spinous processes, the iliac crest, and the inferior 3rd to 4th ribs. The latissimus dorsi inserts on the intertubercular groove of the humerus. Its main functions are to extend, medially rotate, and adduct the humerus.

arrow Teres Major

    The teres major originates from the inferior angle of the scapula and the lower third of the axillary border of the scapula. The teres major inserts on the medial lip of the intertubercular groove of the humerus. Its main functions are to adduct and medially rotate the humerus.

arrow Teres Minor

    The teres minor originates from the superior part of the lateral border of the scapula and inserts on the greater tubercle of the humerus. Its main function is to laterally rotate the humerus.

arrow Rhomboid Major

    The rhomboid major originates from the spinous processes of T12-T15 and inserts on the medial border of the scapula from the root of the spine to the inferior angle. Its main functions are to retract and rotate the scapula downward.

arrow Rhomboid Minor

    The rhomboid minor originates from the spinous processes of C7 and T1 and inserts on the medial border of the scapula from the root of the spine to the inferior angle. Its main functions are to retract and rotate the scapula downward.

arrow Erector Spinae

    The erector spinae is divided into three portions: iliocostalis, longissimus, and spinalis. The iliocostalis originates from the thoracolumbar aponeurosis and inserts on the transverse processes. The longissimus originates from the thoracolumbar aponeurosis and inserts on the mastoid process. The spinalis originates from the ligamentum nuchae and inserts on the occipital bone. The erector spinae extend and laterally flex the spine.

BACK ANATOMY
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Mass Building Exercises
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Now that you know the anatomy of the back, it's time for you to learn about their mass building exercises.

    Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown

      The wide-grip pulldown is an isolation movement used to build mass and quality in the lats. This exercise also builds the teres major, teres minor, rhomboid major, and rhomboid minor muscles. The use of lifting straps is recommended, in order to decrease the use of the biceps and shift most of the workload onto the lats.

Back Back
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Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown.

Video GuidesWindows Media - RealPlayer

    Close-Grip Pulldown

      The close-grip pulldown is an isolation movement used to build mass, width, and quality in the lats. This exercise also builds the teres major, teres minor, rhomboid major, and rhomboid minor muscles. The use of lifting straps is recommended, in order to decrease the use of the biceps and shift most of the workload onto the lats.

Back Back
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Close-Grip Pulldown.

Video GuidesWindows Media - RealPlayer

    Barbell Row

      The barbell row is a compound movement used to build mass, thickness, and density in the lats. This exercise also builds the teres major, teres minor, rhomboid major, and rhomboid minor muscles. The use of a slightly wider than shoulder-width apart grip is recommended.

Back Back
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Barbell Row.

Video GuidesWindows Media - RealPlayer

    Dumbbell Row

      The dumbbell row is an isolation movement used to build mass, thickness, and quality in the lats.

Back Back
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Dumbbell Row.

Video GuidesWindows Media - RealPlayer

    T-Bar Row

      The T-bar row is a compound movement used to build mass, thickness, and density in the lats. This exercise also builds the teres major, teres minor, rhomboid major, and rhomboid minor muscles. The use of a V handle placed under the barbell is recommended.

Back Back
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T-Bar Row.

    Seated Cable Row

      The seated row is an isolation movement used to build mass and quality in the lats.

Back Back
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Seated Cable Row.

Video GuidesWindows Media - MPEG - Video iPod

    Barbell Deadlift

      The barbell deadlift is compound movement used to build mass, density, and power in nearly all muscle groups, especially the erector spinae. It is a difficult movement to master and should be performed with lighter weights until correct execution is achieved. The use of an overhand grip is recommended, in order to prevent and/or reduce the risk of a bicep tendon tear.

Back Back
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Barbell Deadlift.

Video GuidesWindows Media - RealPlayer

    Hyperextension

      The hyperextension is an isolation movement used to build the erector spinae muscles.

Back Back
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Hyperextension.

Video GuidesWindows Media - MPEG - Video iPod

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Mass Building Sets and Rep Ranges
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Next up for you to learn is the amount of sets and rep ranges that will allow you to build maximal muscle mass in the back.

arrow Compound Exercises:

    All compound exercises in the workout plan require 4 sets. The first set consists of 15 reps with light weights, for warm-up purposes. The following three sets consist of 8, 6, and 4 reps with heavy weights, for mass building purposes.

arrow Isolation Exercises:

    All isolation exercises in the workout plan also require 4 sets. The first set consists of 15 reps with light weights, for warm-up purposes. The following three sets consist of 10, 8, and 6 reps with heavy weights for mass building purposes.

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    There are two exceptions to this for some exercises for safety reasons. Those exercises consist of either 12, 10, and 8 reps with medium to heavy weights for mass building and safety purposes, or just 15 reps with no weights, for muscle growth, quality, and safety purposes.

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Mass Building Workout Plan
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Finally, the moment you've been waiting for! The mass building workout plan consists of 4 weeks of differing workouts, with only one back workout each week. After the fourth week is completed, the workout cycle needs to be repeated.

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Conclusion
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Make this new year's resolution one to remember! Train hard, stay consistent, and be prepared to look your best! Check back soon for part 4 of this series.

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