Posterior Chain: 4 Best Exercises To Strengthen Your Posterior Chain

Scrolling through your feed, you’ve probably seen a few videos or posts talking about the posterior chain. Anatomically posterior means back or behind, therefore the posterior chain is referring to all the muscles on the backside of your body, which includes everything from your upper back to your hamstrings and glutes. Build your muscles by including the best posterior chain exercises, significantly increasing your explosiveness and power.

What Is The Posterior Chain 

Training the muscles in your posterior chain, are important to increase strength, size, explosiveness, and power. Posterior-chain exercises involve the contraction and lengthening of the muscles on the back side of your body, in a chain-like motion. Posterior-chain exercises such as the squat, deadlift, and good mornings, are considered compound movements. Compound movements, involve several different muscles groups which are activated at the same time, which can build and improve functional strength, mobility, and protect your body from injury. The posterior chain also includes strengthening of secondary muscles improving mobility, posture, and flexibility.

The posterior chain involves several muscles including
  • Hamstrings
  • Gluteus
  • Erector Spinae
  • Calves
  • Lats
  • Deltoids

Best Exercises For The Posterior Chain  

Squats 

One of the best exercises to strengthen your posterior chain, are squats. Several different variations of the squat such as the front squat, barbell back squats, overhead squats, and pistol squats can all be utilized to recruit and build major muscles involved in the posterior chain such as the quadriceps, hamstrings, gastrocnemius, and the gluteus maximus. Squats can also help you build a stronger core, which are activated for stabilization as well as improve wrist mobility hip mobility and ankle mobility.  

Deadlifts

The deadlift recruits major muscle groups of the posterior chain such as the gluteus maximus, hamstrings, quadriceps, and the lats. It’s a full-body-exercise that builds total body strength. Deadlifts offer several different benefits are one of the best strength movements you can include in your training split or programming. In addition to building more strength, deadlifts can improve muscular imbalances and posture, build core stability, increase grip strength, burn body fat, and improve overall power and athletic performance.  

Good Mornings

Often misunderstood, the good morning exercise is a neglected yet effective strength movement functioning as a mix between the squat and the deadlift. Also called a hip-hinge the good morning has earned a somewhat infamous reputation for being a bit on the dangerous side. When done correctly however, good mornings are an effective strength exercise that benefit the muscles in your posterior chain including the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back.   

Similar to other posterior chain exercises, good mornings are a compound functional movement, which can help improve strength and mobility.

Lunges

The lunge is a traditional staple leg exercise, that is very beneficial to the posterior chain. Lunge variations such as single arm overhead lunge, and plate lunges can add in variability, to improve strength, mobility, and core stability. Including lunges into your leg day training will improve quadricep, hamstring, and glute strength. 

Posterior Chain Exercises: Takeaway

If you want that posterior chain to pop, then start including these posterior chain exercises in your training program. The posterior chain is comprised of several powerhouse muscles that can dramatically improve explosiveness and strength. Muscles in the posterior chain play a significant role in functional strength and human movement, thus making them extremely important for everyday activities. Perhaps even more important, a strong posterior chain will help prevent injury, reduce pain, improve posture and mobility.


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