Why settle for anything less than the best? Granted, there are a couple of good back and bicep exercises that can be done for mass and strength but if you really want to stand out in a roomful of gym rats you need to stick with us.
The list is to give variety in order to make room for deviation in the movement which stimulates the muscles in different ways.
This prompts a more balanced development throughout the bicep complex.
Having a list to choose from increases your focus and intensity as the variety keeps boredom at bay.
Just before we get to the list of nine best back and biceps exercises for mass and strength, there are a few rules for the road.
Things You Must Do Before Starting Back and Bicep Workouts
Believe you can build your back muscles, bicep muscles and achieve that body you want.
This may sound cheesy but it’s still the truth, it begins in the mind. Whatever you set out to do must first be achieved in the mind.
Every workout counts. Go at it with a vengeance. You need to work out consistently.
Your goal is to get better with each routine of back exercises. Half efforts will give you half results.
WORK THE BIG LIFTS
As you train consistently, you build your strength. In order to gain mass, you will need to do the big lifts.
Many think that you gain mass by simply adding more isolation movements on top of what they’re already doing.
But to gain mass, you will need lots of big compound movements.
Granted, isolation movements and machines have their place, but for mass, you have to use more weight and then incorporate a few select isolation movements.
TAKE TIME TO CHILL
Not knowing when to back off from training will be counterproductive to what you are aiming to achieve.
Going long and hard at it for weeks without any plan of letting off, is begging for an injury or even a total breakdown.
Plan to always take a week off after every 8-10 weeks of intense back exercises.
If you cannot bear to take such a long week off, you can at least bring your workout down a notch. This means no added intensity techniques and less volume.
Give your body the rest it needs and it might just leap into growth subsequently.
USE GOOD FORM
Start your set with strict form and as you approach the end of a set, you can loosen it up a bit.
Use body English or momentum to get up, then focus on the negative portion, which should be intact.
This approach may not suit every movement. One arm dumbbell rows, curls, and lateral raises?
Yes. Deadlifts? No.Before calling it a day at the Gym, do as many reps in good form as possible.
GO TO A REAL GYM
Tank tops and grunting with effort might not be a combination that most corporate gyms favor.
There were days when gyms were the domain of serious lifters and stripping down to practice was no big deal,
Of course, there are places not conducive for a serious workout that will give you mass and strength.
Do your homework, and get yourself to a gym where you can throw weight around to help with your back and bicep exercises without feeling like you are disturbing the peace.
Not only do real gyms have more free work out equipment, but they also have more people who take their back and bicep exercises serious.
GET A GYM PARTNER
Having a good place to really workout plus a great person to train with will help you achieve your exercise goals faster.
This person does not necessarily need to share your exact goals or even be as strong as you are.
But, there’s something to be said about having a touch of friendly rivalry in your partnership.
The main qualities to look out for in a gym partner, is for the person to show up on time most of the time, can spot you properly, challenge and motivate you.
LISTEN TO YOUR BODY
It’s good that you push yourself hard and consistently. That does not mean you should also ignore the signs that your body throws at you.
Yes, being paranoid about getting injured will not help your back and bicep exercises, on the other hand getting injured will not help either.
Listen to your body, if during your back muscles workout or any other workout your body complains, you feel any odd or sharp pain? Stop immediately.
If the pain continues when you try other routines, take it easy for a while. This may seem to push you further off your gym goals, but you won’t regret it.
You will have more regrets if you ignore your body, get injured and probably stall your progress for weeks, months or years in extreme cases. Better safe, than sorry.
So, how much protein do you really need? For decades, scientists have been arguing about the protein needs of athletes.
For those same years, millions of bodybuilders have been trying to prove that for the growth of lean muscle tissue, diets rich in protein are the go to.
A 200-pound man will require a range of 300-400 grams of protein per day.
That’s too much protein you might say, but you’re gunning for mass and strength.
Your guts and budget might frown at such intake, be sure to get at least 1 gram per pound if you’re serious about building mass. And you can spread it across your meals daily.
WATCH YOUR SACK TIME
Why do babies grow the most? Simple, they sleep the most. Rest and recovery are very essential to your muscle growth so do not sabotage your results by partying or watching TV late into the night.
Give your back muscles and bod the rest they deserve. Get your 8 hours of sleep daily.
If you legitimately can’t give that number of hours to sleep daily due to work, school or family responsibilities do the best you can.
You will constantly feel short-changed and even sore if you constantly engage in back and bicep exercises without getting rest.
Now that we are done with the rules, let’s get to the fun part, shall we?
So, here’s the list of 9 Best Back and Bicep Exercises for Mass and Strength
9 Best Back and Bicep Exercises for Mass and Strength
1. BARBELL CURL
This back and bicep exercise can be done using a set of dumbbells or barbell bicep curls. For more strength use the barbell curl.
When doing this workout, you need to focus on not cutting the movement pattern short, and not allow momentum to cause you to lean backward as you lift the weight upwards.
To perform the barbell curl
- Hold a heavy barbell with hands shoulder-width apart.
- Curl the weight towards the shoulders by contracting the biceps, keeping the wrists straight.
- Lower and repeat for 10-15 reps.
- Be sure to respect the rest interval before you continue.
2. INCLINE DUMBBELL CURL
This is another back and bicep exercise. It is done using the dumbbells.
Though it does reduce back movements, it helps prevent having an issue with momentum.
Maximum tension is felt on the biceps muscle belly, sometimes the weight is slightly lower.
To do this exercise:
- Sit on a bench with a 45-degree incline or on a ball if you can handle the constant rolling.
- Hold the dumbbells by your sides with palms facing forward with the thumb touching the outer head of the dumbbell.
- Allow the arms to hang fully extended by your sides.
- Keeping your elbows tucked by your sides, contract biceps and curl dumbbells towards your shoulders.
- Raise the dumbbells as high as possible while maintaining tension on the biceps.
- Lower and repeat for 10 reps.
3. STANDING BICEPS CABLE CURL
If you’re targeting deep-tissue muscle fibers, cable curls are your go-to for back and bicep exercise.
Due to the tension provided by the cable constantly, you will need the surrounding muscles of the biceps for stabilization.
For this exercise you need to:
- Stand straight with legs shoulder –width apart while holding a cable curl bar attached to a low pulley.
- Grab the cable bar at shoulder width with palms facing up and elbows close to the torso.
- With your upper arms stationary, curl the weights while contracting the biceps until the bar gets to shoulder level.
- Slowly return the curl bar to the position.
4. WIDE GRIP LAT PULLDOWN
This is one back and bicep exercise that builds maximum strength for the back muscles as well biceps.
To do this exercise
- Sit on a bench facing an adjustable cable machine with the lat pulldown bar positioned on a high setting.
- With your back straight, grab the bar with your arms fully extended and your hands about twice shoulder-width apart.
- Lower your shoulder blades and back bringing the bar to your chest. Pause and repeat.
5. REVERSE GRIP BENT OVER ROWS
You can’t talk of back and bicep exercises without reverse grip rows.
This exercise targets the biceps while making an impact on the back muscles.
Do this for this exercise
- Stand erect while holding a barbell or dumbbells with palms facing up.
- With your head up, bend your knees slightly, to bring your torso forward bend from the waist.
- Lift the barbell or dumbbells as you keep your torso stationary.
- Breathe out while keeping your elbows close to your torso as you contract your biceps and squeeze the back muscles.
- Slowly lower the weight as you breathe in.
6. INCLINE INNER CONCENTRATION CURL
This particular workout is for back and biceps exercise. It gives the biceps mass and strength while strengthening the back muscles.
To start this exercise;
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand and lie back on an incline bench.
- With hands hanging at your sides with dumbbells at arm’s length, curl the weight outward and up.
- Continue the curl until dumbbells are at shoulder length.
- Hold as you contract your biceps.
- Slowly lower the weights as you inhale.
7. STATIC BACK EXTENSION
This back exercise is mainly for strength and endurance. It’s not a back and bicep exercise that targets the muscles of the back and biceps jointly.
So how do you do this exercise
- Using a Roman chair, hook your ankles under the leg anchors and ensure that the leg pads are just below the waistline.
- Cross your arms and lean forward from your waist.
- Brace your core and raise your torso until your body forms a straight line from your head to your ankle.
- Slowly lower your body to starting position and repeat.
8. DUMBELL PULLOVER
The dumbbell pullover exercise is on the list of back and bicep exercises. It works both the back muscles and biceps.
To do this exercise:
- Lie on a bench holding a dumbbell overhead with both hands.
- Engage the rhomboids (shoulder blades) to pull the arm to shoulder level, towards your armpit.
- Slowly lower and repeat the movement.
9. T-PULLS AND Y-PULLS WITH RESISTANCE BANDS
Though this is last on the list, it’s definitely not the least in the back and biceps exercises.
It includes back lifts and movements that strengthen the biceps.
To perform this exercise
- Sit on the floor and loop the band around both feet, holding each end of the band with an underhand grip.
- With a slight bend in the elbow, squeeze the shoulder blades to open arms out to the side in a T shape.
- Return to start and take the arms up in a Y shape.
- Shoulders and back should be straight throughout the movement.
- Keep alternating between the Y-pull and T-pull for 10 to 12 reps.
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Before you jump on any of the back and bicep exercises we have given you, be sure to do few warm-up exercises.
That will help you move easily into the back and bicep exercises. Good luck and enjoy your workout.