5 Science-Backed Chest & Back Workout For Men

Are you a fitness freak religiously hitting the gym every day? Want to achieve that V-Shaped torso flaunted by celebrities? Come, let’s get our questions answered!

Exercises are not just for looking good but also for your overall health.

Everybody cannot train separate body parts individually. For a more intense session, supersets are done. Supersets combine two or more exercises, where you do the second exercise immediately after the first.

Super setting chest and back is one such intense and challenging workout session. In this session, you get your full upper-body workout. These exercises include a lot of pulling and pushing to hit all your critical upper-body muscles.

What is a Superset?

dumbbells and weights on the floor© Shutterstock

In a superset workout, you combine two exercises and do them back-to-back. Some of the common supersets are combining :

  • Chest and Back
  • Quads and Hamstrings
  • Triceps and Biceps
  • Abs and Lower-back

In these supersets, you usually work out two opposite muscle groups. As a result, you can choose two intense moves for each muscle group. Since you are training opposite muscle groups, your muscles get enough rest to recover.

Ultimate Upper-Body Workout

man doing upper body workouts© Shutterstock

By combining ultimate chest and back workouts as a superset, you are training your whole upper body. In these supersets, you do an intense workout for your chest while your back muscles rest. You continue with a back exercise while your chest muscles rest.

By doing so, you are maintaining a high-calorie burn while not overworking a muscle group. You can efficiently use your gym time and burn maximum calories. The Chest and Back superset workout also builds muscles by combining pulling and pushing exercises.

What are the Benefits of a Full Chest & Back Workout?

man doing a upper body chest workout© iStock

Chest and back superset workouts ensure that you blend pulling and pushing into your overall exercises. Also, it involves a lot of intense weight movements, which builds muscles. These workouts incorporate two or more exercises with varying rep ranges to train your upper-body muscles.

Apart from muscle building and improving strength, ultimate chest and back workouts have the following benefits.

1. Improves posture

Posture is determined by the pec muscles (Pectoralis major and pectoralis minor). These full chest & back workouts train the pec muscles and improve your posture. In addition to a good posture, you are also strengthening shoulder muscles and joints.

2. Stretches your chest

The pec muscles cover the chest and the ribs. While working out your upper body, your pec muscles are stretched. This incidentally improved breathing by better stretching the pec muscles during breathing.

3. Supports your Chest

These intense upper-body workouts train your chest tissues, making them stronger and longer. In turn, your chest muscles are strengthened.

4. Improve strength

The Pectoralis muscles are used in all our day-to-day activities. Pec muscles are used when we pull, push, or carry any weight. Strengthening these pec muscles through upper-body workouts will improve your overall strength.

Now you have understood what these supersets are and how it benefits you. Wondering where to begin? Let’s discuss some of the workouts to start with.

Most Effective Science-Based Chest & Back Workout For Men

Below are some classic workouts intended to strengthen your chest and back muscles.

1. Barbell chest press

a man lifting weight on a bench press© iStock

The barbell chest press is one of the popular exercises to work the chest muscles. It helps in gaining muscles. To start with, add lighter weights until you get the hang of it. Gradually move to heavier weights.

How to do it?

  • Lie flat on a bench holding the bar with hands slightly wider than the shoulders.
  • Hold the bar by wrapping your thumbs around it. Do not bend the wrist due to the weight of the bar.
  • Squeeze your shoulders and pull the bar off the holder.
  • Extend your arms and push the bar up until you have stretched your arms fully.
  • Lower the bar slowly to touch your chest. Breathe in as you lower the bar.
  • Slowly bring it down to intensify the exercise.
  • Breathe out and push the bar back upwards to the starting position.
  • Keep your hips still when you move the barbell up and down.

2. The cable pulldown

man doing cable pulldowns at the gym© iStock

Develop your back muscles by performing the cable pulldown exercise. This equipment is commonly found in many gyms. Even a beginner can try this exercise by properly following the guidelines.

How to do it?

  • Sit on the machine bench and choose your weight.
  • Grip the bar with your hands slightly wider than the shoulder width
  • Pull your shoulders and elbows down and back to pull the bar down to the mid-chest level
  • Reverse the bar slowly until you feel the stretch in your lats and back muscles
  • Do not sink your head toward your shoulders

3. Barbell inclined press

man doing barbell inclined press© iStock

The inclined barbell press is a slight variation of the barbell chest press. You can overcome limitations like lifting your head and neck during the bench press. Avoid common mistakes by following the instructions below.

How to do it?

  • Lie flat on an inclined bench with your feet flat on the ground.
  • Take the barbell off the stand at about shoulder-width grip and hold it above your chest. Extend your arms completely.
  • Take a deep breath and bring down the bar slowly to your chest. Lower the barbell slowly, with tension.
  • Hold for a few seconds and lift it slowly back upwards. Exhale during this step.
  • Repeat this procedure the desired number of times.

4. Barbell bent-over row

man doing barbell bent-over rowSam Sabourin on Unsplash

When done following strict measures, the barbell bent-over row is used to build a muscular back. This is one of the compound workouts where a large muscle is exercised.

How to do it?

  • Hold the barbell with your palm facing down.
  • Keep your foot shoulder-width apart.
  • Bend your knees and with a straight back, bend your torso forward.
  • Keep your back almost parallel to the ground.
  • Lift the barbell until your sternum is.
  • Keep your elbows close to your body.
  • Pause and hold for a few seconds. Feel the squeeze in your back muscles.
  • Slowly and steadily lower the barbell back to the starting position.
  • Repeat the procedure desired number of times.

5. The Classic Push-ups

man doing push-ups© iStock

Push-ups are used for whole-body workouts, but the focus is more on the chest, shoulders, and back. For beginners, 10 to 15 reps and four sets are enough. It depends on your end goal.

How to do it?

  • Be on all fours by gripping your workout mat.
  • Place your palms on the mat, slightly wider than the shoulder width.
  • Keep your legs straight and come to the plank position.
  • Keep your core tight and lower your body. Inhale as you lower your body.
  • Now, exhale and push up your body by pressing your palms.
  • Go as low as you can for better results.

These are some workouts to strengthen your chest and back muscles individually.

Combined Chest & Back Workouts

Supersetting chest and back workouts strengthen more than one muscle in a single exercise. You can combine two or more workouts, each exercising a different muscle. A sample of a combined full chest and back workout is given below for beginners.

  • Barbell bent-over row and barbell chest press
  1. Three sets of barbell bent-over rows with ten reps each.
  2. Three sets of barbell chest presses with eight reps each
  • Chin-up and barbell-inclined press
  1. Three sets of chin-ups with five to eight reps each
  2. Three sets of the inclined press with two to three reps each at 30° inclination
  • Inclined bench press and Dumbbell row
  1. Three sets of inclines bench presses with five reps each
  2. Three sets of dumbbell rows with five reps each

A Word of Caution

Overall upper-body workout is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your chest and back. But since these workouts carry the risk of injuries, follow proper posture. And, do not overdo any of these sessions.

Don’t indulge in full chest and back workouts for the whole week. Instead, do it twice a week with two days of rest. Juggle it with other workouts throughout the week.

Carefully combine workouts to avoid any negative impact on your arms and shoulders.

Hire a trainer to make these workout sessions more effective and error-free.

The Bottomline

Ultimate chest and back workouts are very crucial in strength training. Strengthen your chest and get a muscular back with these workout regimes. They also improve your overall stamina, posture, and breathing capacity. You can also keep your blood pressure and blood sugar levels in check with these workouts. One important thing to concentrate on during these sessions is your diet. Maintain a rich and balanced diet along with these workouts for your overall development.