A muscle that you shouldn’t neglect if you want to see training progress

While training, it is really easy to focus on the muscles we like while neglecting other important muscles. I am talking about your rhomboids (my whaaa?). No doubt it is a good feeling to flex and see your progress in the mirror, but that means that your back is often neglected – and that’s exactly where your rhomboids are located.

The rhomboids are muscles that lie beneath the trapezius muscles of the upper back, used in sports such as swimming, racquet sports, baseball, rowing, gymnastics, archery, football, and wrestling. They are often ignored because athletes tend to concentrate on strengthening muscles that are in the front of their body. Some people can bench press more than 300 pounds, but can barely pull half that amount when relying upon the rhomboid muscles. The resulting imbalance may create a potential for injury.

 

Exercises to strengthen the rhomboids:

Seated Rowing

Seated Rowing Exercise Technique

Seated rowing requires a machine that provides constant resistance using a rowing motion. This exercise involves the trapezius, deltoid, and biceps, as well as the rhomboids.

Stretch Band

Stretch Band Exercise Technique

With a stretch band, stand with your arms raised at shoulder width. Pull your hands away from each other as far as you can and try to complete three sets of 10 to 20 repetitions.

Reverse Fly

Reverse Fly Exercise Technique

For the reverse fly, use a bench that is high enough for you to lie on your stomach and move your arms in a wide range of motion. Hold a 2lb to 10lb dumbbell in each hand, depending on your strength, and let your hands hang straight down, palms facing each other. Raise the dumbbell at a controlled speed as high as possible with your elbows locked. Then lower your arms in a controlled manner and repeat three sets of 10 repetitions.

Dumbbell Rows

Dumbbell Rows Exercise Technique

Hold a dumbbell in one hand and support your body with the other hand on the bench. Keep your back straight from the hips to your shoulders. Pull the dumbbell up until it touches your chest. Your elbow should be higher than your shoulder. Lower the weight gradually, keeping the rest of your body stationary. Conduct the lift with one arm for one set then, repeat it with the other. Start with 5 to 10 pounds or more, and then perform one to three sets of your 6 -10 times range of motion.

Now that you know your rhomboids exist, don’t ignore them. Make an effort to incorporate some exercises into your routine that will help them get stronger.

 

- Blog by John Pistone