February 22


Maximize Your Results: The Most Effective Bodyweight Exercises for a Strong and Healthy Back

A lot of people spend their time hunched over their phones or at their desks. This kind of lifestyle can wreak havoc on your back, causing pain and discomfort that can really put a damper on your day. But fear not; there’s a solution: bodyweight exercises for the back!

If you don’t have fancy gym equipment or membership, bodyweight exercises are a great way to strengthen your back muscles.

If you’re a newbie to fitness or a seasoned athlete, join me as we explore the most effective bodyweight exercises for a strong and healthy back.

Let’s dive in!

10 Best Bodyweight Back Exercises

Best Bodyweight Back Exercises

Wide-Grip Pullups 

The first one of the best Bodyweight exercises for the back is wide grip pull-ups. You can build upper body strength with this bodyweight exercise. Also, it’s one of the best bodyweight exercises for the back and shoulders.

  • Find a pull-up bar that is high enough so that you can hang from it without your feet touching the ground. Make sure the bar is sturdy and can support your weight.
  • Grab the bar with both hands, palms facing away from you, as you stand under the pull-up bar.
  • Ensure your feet are off the ground and your arms are fully extended as you hang from the bar.
  • Using your shoulder blades and back muscles, pull yourself up towards the bar. Instead of using your arms alone, pull yourself up with your elbows.
  • At the top of the movement, pause for a moment after you’ve lifted your chin above the bar.
  • With control, return to the starting position, keeping your arms and shoulders engaged.

Wide Grip Pullup is one of the best bodyweight exercises for back pain as well.

Bodyweight Rows (Inverted Rows Or Horizontal Pull Ups) 

The best workout for upper back training is bodyweight rows. You can also do it in your basement, bedroom, playground, or wherever else you like,

The Process:

  • Under a sturdy surface that is approximately hip height, lie down.
  • Using an overhand grip, hold the bar or surface shoulder-width apart.
  • Make sure your legs are straight from head to heels.
  • Pulling your chest toward the bar should involve keeping your elbows close to your body.
  • Pull your shoulder blades together at the peak of the movement.
  • Return to the starting position by slowly lowering yourself.

Elbow Raise (Back Widow Or Reverse Pushup) 

The elbow raise, also known as the back widow or reverse pushup, is an effective bodyweight exercise that targets your upper back muscles.

The Process:

  • Place your hands straight in front of you while lying face down on a mat or on the floor.
  • As you raise your arms and legs off the ground, keep your neck and spine neutral.
  • Bring your elbows up toward the ceiling, squeezing your shoulder blades together at the top.
  • Once you have held for a few seconds, slowly lower your arms back to the starting position.
  • Put your legs back in their starting positions as well

Single-Leg Deadlift 

Single-leg deadlift is one of the best bodyweight exercises for the lower back and hamstrings.

The Process:

  • Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and your arms by your sides.
  • Keeping your other leg straight, shift your weight onto one leg and lift it slightly off the ground.
  • Lift your straight leg behind you while lowering your torso to the ground.
  • Square your hips and straighten your back.
  • Stretch your hamstrings until you feel your torso parallel to the ground.
  • Return slowly to the starting position after a brief pause.


Supermans are a great way to work your entire back, from your lower back all the way up to your shoulders.

    Get the latest exercise types, equipment reviews, fitness tips and exclusive offers to help you on your fitness journey.

    The Process:

    • Lie face down on a mat or on the floor with your arms and legs extended.
    • While keeping your back and neck neutral, lift your arms, legs, and chest up as high as you can.
    • During the movement, squeeze your glutes and lower back muscles.
    • Slowly return your arms, legs, and chest to their starting positions after holding for several seconds.

    Back Extensions 

    Bodyweight back extensions are a simple yet effective exercise that targets your lower back muscles. 

    The Process:

    • With your arms extended and your legs straight, lie face down on a mat or on the floor.
    • Keep your neck and spine neutral as you lift your chest and legs off the ground.
    • After holding the top position for a few seconds, lower yourself back down to the starting position.

    Reverse Snow Angels 

    Reverse snow angels are a great way to work your upper back and shoulders. 

    The Process:

    • Face down on a mat or on the floor with your arms extended straight out to the sides.
    • Try squeezing your shoulder blades together as you lift your arms.
    • Keep your neck and spine neutral throughout the movement.
    • Keeping your arms straight and in line with your shoulders, lift them towards your head.
    • After a few seconds, slowly lower your arms back down to the starting position.

    Full Body Drag (Floor Pullover)

    The full body drag, also known as the floor pullover, is a challenging exercise that targets your upper back and shoulders.

    The Process:

    • Put your hands straight above your head and your legs straight out in front of you and lie face up on a mat or on the floor.
    • Your back should be flat against the ground and your core engaged.
    • Keep your arms and legs straight while lifting them simultaneously off the ground.
    • You should pass your hands over your head and between your legs as you bring your arms and legs closer to each other.
    • Throughout the movement, keep your back flat against the ground and engage your core.
    • After a brief pause, slowly lower your arms and legs back to the starting position.

    Rowing Machine 

    While not technically a bodyweight exercise, the rowing machine is a great way to work your back muscles without any added weight.

    The Process:

    • Sit on the machine with your feet secured and your hands on the handles.
    • Sit on the rowing machine seat with your feet securely strapped in and your hands gripping the handles.
    • Engage your core and keep your back straight.
    • To extend your legs, straighten your arms and push off with them.
    • With your elbows close to your body, pull the handles towards your chest once your legs are fully extended.
    • After pulling, squeeze your shoulder blades together to fully engage your back muscles.
    • Reverse the movement by extending your arms and leaning forward, then bending your legs to return to the starting position.

    Back Lever 

    • To perform a back lever, you start by hanging from the bar or rings with a pronated grip (palms facing away from you) and your arms fully extended.
    • Then, you engage your core, glutes, and back muscles to raise your legs and torso until they are parallel to the ground.
    • Your arms should still be fully extended, and your body should be straight from head to toe.

    Pro Zone: Difficult Bodyweight Workouts For The Back 

    Difficult Bodyweight Workouts For The Back

    Inverted Row With Elevated Feet

    • From below, grip a bar or TRX handle and elevate both feet on a bench or chair, palms facing down.
    • Lower your chest back down after pulling it toward your hands.
    • Try for 2–3 sets of 12–15 reps.


    • Grip the bar with your hands shoulder-width apart, palms facing your body.
    • Don’t move your lower body around too much — try to use as much core and upper-body strength as possible.
    • Pull your body until your chin is above the bar, mostly using your back muscles.
    • Slowly lower yourself down.

    Eccentric-Focus Pull-Up 

    • Do a regular pull-up.
    • Lower yourself down slowly, with a 3-to-5-second count, before doing another rep.

    Eccentric-Focus Chin-Up 

    • Do a regular chin-up.
    • Lower down with a 3-second count before doing another rep.


    • Build momentum by starting in a pull-up position and swinging your legs forward.
    • When your legs are swinging back, pull up explosively while tucking your knees into your chest to help you swing around the bar. 
    • To push yourself until you reach the top of the exercise, perform a dip with your arms locked out and your knees hanging just below the bar.
    • Take a deep breath and lower yourself again.

    The Complete List Of Types Of Bodyweight Exercises For Back 

    Bodyweight Exercises For Back

    Upper-Back Bodyweight Exercises 

    • Swan Pullup
    • Tornado Pullup
    • Back Lever Pull
    • One-Arm Pullup
    • Rope Climbing
    • Elbow Raise (Back widow)
    • One-Arm Bodyweight Row
    • Pullup
    • Close-Grip Pull Up
    • Skin the Cat
    • Archer Pull-Up (Typewriter)
    • Bodyweight Row (Horizontal Pull Up)
    • Ice Cream Maker

    Lower-Back Bodyweight Exercises 

    • Bridge Rotation
    • Bridge Push Up
    • One-Arm Bridge Pushup
    • Plank
    • Bird Dog
    • Superman
    • Reverse Superman
    • Back Extension
    • Single-Leg Deadlift
    • Back Lever Leg Raise

    Bodyweight Lat Exercises 

    • Chin-up
    • Cobra
    • Door Row
    • Full-Body Drag (Floor Pullover)
    • Reverse Snow Angel
    • Ab Wheel Rollout
    • Wide-Grip Pullup
    • Negative Pull Up

    Bodyweight Back Exercises With No Equipment

    • Bridge Rotation
    • Bridge Push Up
    • Single-Leg Deadlift
    • Bak Widow
    • Back Extension
    • Plank
    • Superman
    • Reverse Superman
    • Full-Body Drag
    • Bird Dog
    • Reverse Snow Angel

    Muscle Groups Worked During Bodyweight Back Exercises  

    When you work on your back muscles with bodyweight exercises, you’re targeting both your extrinsic and intrinsic back muscles.

    Extrinsic Back Muscles 

    • latissimus dorsi
    • levator scapulae
    • rhomboids (major and minor)
    • serratus posterior (superior and inferior)
    • trapezius

    Intrinsic Back Muscles 

    • Erector Spinae:
    • Multifidus:
    • Transversospinalis: 


    Now you know about some of the most effective bodyweight exercises for building a healthy back. Also, you know the right way to do these exercises.

    For more questions, you can hit the comment section