Routines Guaranteed to Build a Strong Sexy Back: Female Edition


A jacked back is a sure sign of brute strength and pure badassery. In fact, the back is usually the limiting factor for bad ass lifts including the pull-up, deadlift, bench, and squat.

This article covers three methods to build a bigger stronger back to help you crush your first weighted pull-up, catch that 300-pound deadlift and look jacked in a Razorback shirt.

Side know; if you would like to learn how to translate these methods into a resistance training program check out this recent post (Everything You Need to Know to Write Incredible Programs)

But first, how do muscles grow?

Two Main Factors:

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Method 1: Train the Deadlift


The deadlift is my bread and butter back builder.

Think about how much muscle tension and energy it takes you to pull 65% vs 95% of your deadlift training max. It’s a lot different.

Heavier loads necessitate recruiting more muscle fibers so, in a sense, heavier deadlifts require an “all-hands-on-deck” effort. Every muscle is creating tension under a high mechanical load causing muscle damage. Creating these two factors (mechanical load and muscle damage) in a routine contributes to hypertrophy.


Practically Applied

  • Deadlift (Click here for a tutorial)
  • Reps: 1-5
  • Rest 2-5mins
  • Load: 85% or greater


Method 2: Rest-Pause: Drop Sets

When it comes to packing on lean muscle, drop sets can be a key contributor. In “The Size & Strength Blueprint”, Josh and Noah Bryant write that drop sets work because “they recruit the entire spectrum of muscle fibers, ranging from the powerful fast-twitch down to the slow-twitch fibers”



This style of training causes muscle growth via fatigue producing metabolic build up.


Protocol for Rest Pause-Drop Sets

  • Take a weight you can perform for 6-10 repetitions
  • Lift the weight for as many reps possible (AMRAP)
  • Rest 20sec
  • Decrease the load by 20-30%
  • Lift the weight for AMRAP
  • Rest 20 sec
  • Decrease the Load by 20-30%
  • Lift the weight for AMRAP
  • Finished
Jaclyn Moran: Owner and Operator of Warhorse Barbell - Visit to learn more about her! 

Jaclyn Moran: Owner and Operator of Warhorse Barbell - Visit to learn more about her! 


 A practical example for the pull-up would be:

  • Part 1: Weighted pull-up (5lbs) x AMRAP shooting for 6-10 reps
  • Rest 20 Seconds
  • Part 2: Bodyweight Pull-Up AMRAP
  • Rest 20 Seconds
  • Part 3: Band Assisted Pull-Up AMRAP
  • Set 1: Complete

Method 3: Partial Rep Training


More often than not, I preach full range of motion for maximum results. Nonetheless, there are always exceptions to the rule.

Partial reps are movements executed within specific range, allowing you to lift heavier weights. Partial rep training helps your central nervous system adapt to heavier weight, forcing more muscle tension and muscle damage to occur.

A practical example for T-Bar Prison Rows would be:

  • Whatever weight you normally use for full range of motion take that number and add 20-30% more load.
  • Exercise 1: Partial Rep T-Bar Rows 3x15 Plus 20-30% of normal load
  • Rest 60sec between each set
  • Exercise 2: T-Bar Rows (full range of motion) 3x20 at your normal full range of motion weight.
  • Rest 60-90 seconds between each set

Final Thoughts

  I’ve found that females can train the back almost every session (3-4 times a week) and still recover. If you are looking to lift more weight or just look better on the beach try implementing these three methods above in your training sessions.