This Bodyweight Move Will Murder Your Back

Men’s Health/Eric Rosati

If you’ve been doing nothing but home workouts for the last few weeks, you’ve probably noticed that some muscle groups are much tougher to hit than others. Abs? Easy. Legs? No problem. Biceps? Tough, but doable. How about your back? Unless you have some equipment on hand, you’re going to have a really hard time working those muscles.

Trainer Charlee Atkins, C.S.C.S. knows this struggle. “Without our gyms open, the hardest muscles to target with minimal equipment are the back muscles, or our ‘pulling muscles,'” she says. Unsurprisingly, pullups are one of the best bodyweight solutions to this problem—and you can also use gear you have around the house to fashion your own weights to get your pull on.

If you’re not trying to pillage your refrigerator for loads to lift, though, there’s more than just pullups to attack that back. Atkins suggests giving this aptly-named bodyweight move a try. To do the back widow, all you need is some room to lie down and a set of sliders for your elbows. “Tips: You can use towels as sliders or paper plates if you have carpet,” says Atkins. “Goal: Get the shoulders blades to retract and adduct to keep our posture looking tall.”

While your back muscles should be doing the work, make sure that your posture doesn’t get lazy. Keep your butt on the ground, and squeeze your glutes and core to maintain tension as you move through the reps.

Try adding 3 sets of 10 reps to your next home upper body workout.

Want to learn more moves from Atkins? Check out our series full of her workout tips, Try Her Move. You can also take on her new 30 day challenge in our streaming All Out Studio app, check out her Le Sweat workout app, and follow her on Instagram to find out when she’s hosting live workouts from her living room.

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