Back Exercise Machine Tips and Shopping Options

Tamsen Butler
Lat pull down exercise at gym

A strong back is essential when you exercise frequently; a stable core can help prevent back injuries and will allow you to take your workouts further. Whether you're rehabilitating an injured back or building up your back strength as part of an overall wellness program, there are many back exercise machines designed to help you.

Options for Back Exercise Equipment

Whether you're new to strength training, or you've been working out for a while, there are several different types of back exercise equipment you can use to help strengthen your upper and lower back. If you're recovering from a back injury, speak to your physician or physical therapist prior to selecting a back exercise machine to ensure you choose one that is suitable for your needs.

Hyperextension Machine

This type of exercise equipment is designed to strengthen the lower back. This machine allows you to extend your back by placing your body in a safe position for extension. The website BodyBuilding.com says this machine is suitable for beginners and can be modified to include extra weight by grasping a hand weight while performing the exercise.

At the Gym

Most gyms have back hyperextension machines available. You can also do back extensions on the floor or atop a stability ball.

DelTech Fitness Hyperextension Bench

The DelTech Fitness Hyperextension Bench is a good option for a home gym because if its compact size, durability, and easy adjustability. DelTech benches frequently appear on "best lists," as they did for My Gym Machine's 8 Best Hyper Extension Machines of 2019 list. Available for around $135, this machine doubles as an abdominal crunch machine.

Stamina Hyper Bench

The Stamina Hyper Bench is a top-rated choice among Amazon customers. Available for under $100, this bench is durable yet folds for easy storage. The bench is easily adjustable to accommodate a variety of heights.

Exercise Ball

An exercise ball is a good option for someone who wants an inexpensive piece of back equipment that can easily be moved and stored. Spine-Health.com says that exercise balls are effective at strengthening and developing core body muscles that line the spine. Use the ball for back extensions, planks, or to force stability work while doing seated hand weight work.

Young woman stretching on exercise ball

At the Gym

Since exercise balls at the gym are used by a variety of people, it's a good idea to wipe it down before use and check for leaks or wear before use.

URBNFit Stability Ball

The URBNFit stability ball appears at the top of the 6 Best Exercise Balls of 2019 list from VeryWell Fit. Because it's burst-resistant up to 2000 lbs, it can withstand vigorous workouts without fear of the ball leaking or bursting. The ball is suitable for home or gym workouts and costs under $20.

Gaiam Restore Strong Back Stability Ball Kit

The Gaiam Restore Strong Back Stability Ball Kit comes with a ball and a pump for around $25. Gaiam is well-known for quality stability balls that feature a unique texture making the workout less slippy, especially when the exerciser starts sweating. This kit also includes downloads for exercise routines to strengthen the back and entire core.

Lat Pull Down

Lat pull downs are one of the most effective ways of working the upper back, along with the biceps. RelativeStrengthAdvantage.com says that the lat pull down is the best way to learn how to use and strengthen the muscles in the upper back effectively.

At the Gym

The lat pull down machine at the gym might be freestanding or might be a section of a larger machine. You can also get similar results from presses with hand weights.

XMark Lat Pulldown and Low Row Cable Machine

The XMark Lat Pulldown and Low Row Cable Machine provides a variety of exercise opportunities including lat pull downs and cable rows, both of which are beneficial to back muscles. GarageGymPlanner rates this machine among the best options for home gyms. Buy this machine for around $550.

Body Solid Pro Lat Machine

The Body Solid Pro Lat Machine retails for around $650. Reviewers say the machine is solid and provides a good workout. This machine is specifically designed for at-home use.

Seated Row

The seated row is a basic exercise that can sometimes be found at the bottom of a lat pull down machine. Muscle and Fitness Magazine says the seated row is more effective at targeting the middle back than the lat pull down is at targeting the lats. While seated securely, grasp the handles with both hands and pull toward you while squeezing your shoulder blades together; maintain a neutral spine throughout the movement.

At the Gym

Resistance bands are a good option for this exercise. Like the pull down, the seated row machine at the gym might be freestanding or may be a portion of a larger machine.

Valor Fitness Seated Row

The Valor Fitness Seated Row with Independent Arms stands out because it allows for modifications with the separate arms. It also allows the user to focus on balanced strength between the two sides of the body. Overstock reviewers praise this machine for the value. Buy this machine for under $300.

Body Solid Seated Row Machine

The Body Solid seated row machine is a low-profile design with a padded chest rest and four handle positions for grip. It has a lifetime warranty and an easy-access plate loading system. Customers like the quality and the ease of use. It retails for around $370.

Work Your Back

The back is often overlooked as part of the core, but is an integral part of core strength. Find the right piece of equipment to work your back to ensure you build your core up properly from all sides.

Back Exercise Machine Tips and Shopping Options