How To Build A Christmas Tree-Type Lower Back

Let’s see…you’re headed to the gym and trying to calculate in your mind what you’re going to be doing. It’s leg day, after all. So the last thing that you’re thinking about is your lower back. But if you want to gain a distinct advantage, then you should give this small but important body part some attention every day you are training.

Working your core muscles will help you out in more ways than you can imagine and even help stabilize your squats. So in addition to hitting your abs daily, add in at least one lower back movement to cover the entire core.

When you develop a detailed and strong lower back, it gives off the look of a Christmas tree and helps you on your quest to a V-taper. These are also a smart move for injury prevention. And your back will appreciate that when you reach your 40s after all of the squats, deadlifts and standing overhead presses over the years.

Some of these exercises are fairly simple and those are the ones that you should get in either before or after your main body part(s) of that particular day.


Perhaps the best of the lot, hypers at this angle will work the lower back (on the way up) and also give you a great stretch on the way down. Because of the angle, you will have enough range of motion to work the muscles properly and even have a shorter distance to pick up and/or drop any additional weight used for added resistance.


Similar to the above but with an obvious longer range of motion. The one complaint that some people have with this bench is that they get a little lightheaded while going up and down. But if it doesn’t effect you that way, then go with the 90s.


Not as effective as hyperextensions, but a good choice to mix things up, nonetheless. Adjust the pad and depth to give yourself a wide range of motion, taking advantage of the smoothness of a machine for a body part that usually doesn’t have that luxury.


An overall core exercise that you can basically anywhere you are. Watching the game at home on television? Do a full minute plank during the commercials instead of digging your hand in the potato chips bag. It will strengthen your abs and lower back simultaneously.


These will obviously be performed on back day and a compound movement that you should always do, anyway. Kind of like killing two birds with one stone, if you will. This is the one that will tax the shit out of your lower back and build up your strength in that location like nothing else you can do in the gym.


Not the most convenient or comfortable exercise, but this is the gym and not a rub n’ tug, right? Keep the weight moderate so that the form can be strict, as this is an injury waiting to happen if you try to push more than you can handle.