Elevate Your Back Day with an Under-Appreciated Smith Machine

Learn Smith machine exercises for back strength and tempo variations for size.

In this newsletter, you’ll find the best 7 Smith machine exercises for back days and instructions for implementing those movements into your routine.  

We’ll also share the secrets to improving your strength on meet day through our exclusive Game Day for Powerlifting course, built by top coach Avi Silverberg.

Finally, read on for trending news and our top tip on gaining size by adjusting the tempos of movements within your current workout routine!  

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Preparing for Success on Meet Day

Are you ready to conquer meet day? Maybe your last meet didn’t meet your expectations. If you’re looking to break PRs and stand at the top of the podium, Game Day for Powerlifting can help.

Avi Silverberg, a Head Coach of Team Canada Powerlifting, built this comprehensive guide. He walks you through all the nuances of meet day and prepares you for the performance of a lifetime.

But for those who need more assistance on their journey to powerlifting success, there is also an option for one-on-one online coaching. Book a free 20-minute consulting call with one of our coaches to help you build a custom program.

Top Reads of the Week

7 Best Smith Machine Exercises For The Ultimate Back Workout

A Smith machine is found in most gyms, so it's a good choice for targeting the entire posterior chain. But what would be the best back workout using a Smith machine?

The best Smith machine back workout includes the following movements:

  • Smith Machine Deadlift

  • Smith Machine Row

  • Smith Machine Shrug

  • Smith Machine Sumo Deadlift

  • Smith Machine Inverted Row

There are more movements on our list, so make sure to read the full article to learn all the best movements and how to select the right ones for your goals. We also include how to program them using the correct rep ranges, sets, and intensities!

Course Offer

Coursera offers a nine-hour course from the University of Colorado Boulder. The topic?

The science of exercise.

Here’s what it covers:

  • Energetics of Exercise (how what you eat gets processed into energy)

  • Physiological Systems of Exercise (how your body adapts to workouts)

  • Training Guidelines (including what causes fatigue)

  • Exercise as Medicine (and its benefits during aging)

Our favorite part? You can enroll for free with a seven-day trial of Coursera Plus.

back muscles GIF by Gymshark

Gif by gymshark on Giphy

Easy Tip to Gain Size - Use Tempo Variations

To get bigger, the recommended approach is to lift more weight. Although this is true, there’s an alternative approach for those who already lift heavy and struggle to gain size.

Another method is to add tempo variations to your workouts.

Varying your pace while lifting enhances the rigor of movement and allows you to perform better time under tension.

Time under tension, also known as TUT, helps spike muscular growth. TUT emphasizes the duration of each repetition, enhancing the muscular contraction and making it much more exhausting.

An example of a tempo variation would be 3-2-5-0 Tempo Cable Bicep Curls.

The numerical sequence (3-2-5-0) corresponds to the time in seconds allocated for each phase of the cable bicep curl.

  • 3 seconds to lift the weight

  • 2 seconds to pause at the top

  • 5 seconds to lower the weight

  • 0 seconds, so no pause at the bottom

Try this tempo with 1-2 exercises in each workout to help make them much more exhausting for a better result!

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