Top 10 TRX Exercises To Build A Stronger Back

Top 10 TRX Exercises To Build A Stronger Back

Feb 02, 2024

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Top 10 TRX Back Exercises

Building a stronger back is essential not only for aesthetics but also for functional health, improving posture, preventing injuries, and enhancing performance in both sports and everyday activities.

The muscles in the back play a pivotal role in stabilizing the spine and supporting the upper body, making it crucial to incorporate exercises that target these areas effectively. One versatile and accessible piece of equipment that facilitates a comprehensive back workout is the TRX suspension trainer.

Utilizing body weight and gravity as resistance, TRX exercises allow for a variety of movements that challenge balance, engage stabilizer muscles, and build functional strength.

Effective TRX Back Exercises

1. TRX Row:

Targets latissimus dorsi, mid-back, shoulders, and biceps while enhancing core stability. Lean back with arms extended, pull the body towards the anchor point by squeezing the shoulder blades together, then slowly return to the starting position.

2. TRX Single-Arm Row:

Focuses on the lats, traps, rhomboids, posterior deltoids, and biceps, promoting core rotation and stability. Stand sideways, lean away, and row the body towards the anchor point with one arm, then switch sides.

3. TRX Inverted Row:

Strengthens the lats, middle back, biceps, and core. Put hands in straps, pull the chest up to the handles, and then return to the starting position with control.

4. TRX Y-Deltoid Fly:

Builds upper back strength, including rear delts, traps, and rhomboids, challenging balance and core stability. Lean forward with tension on the straps and raise arms into a Y position.

5. TRX T-Deltoid Fly:

Targets posterior deltoids and mid-back, engaging the core for stability. Lean forward, raise arms to the sides in a T position, and pull back towards the hips.

Programming Recommendations

For optimal results, include these exercises in your routine 2-3 times per week on non-consecutive days, performing 2-4 sets of 8-15 repetitions.

Focus on maintaining proper form and gradually progress by increasing reps, decreasing rest periods, or incorporating additional exercises.

TRX Exercises for Spinal Health

In addition to building muscular strength, it's vital to focus on exercises that promote spinal health and posture. The TRX suspension trainer excels in facilitating movements through full ranges of motion, aiding in balanced strength and mobility for a healthy spine.

6. TRX Superman:

Works the entire posterior chain, counteracting the compressive forces of sitting by lifting arms, chest, and legs simultaneously.

7. TRX Back Extension:

Isolates the erector spinae muscles, crucial for maintaining good posture. Lean forward with tension on the straps, extend hips forward, and arch back.

8. TRX Pike:

Helps decompress the spine and open tight hamstrings, pressing hips upward into an inverted pike position.

9. TRX Backwards Lunge with Rotation:

Enhances thoracic spine mobility, single leg stability, and hip mobility by stepping back into a lunge and rotating towards the ceiling.

10. TRX Chest Expansion (Chest Fly):

Opens the chest and challenges thoracic spine extension, important for shoulder health and spinal alignment.

Sample Workout for Back Health


  • Cat/Cows: 10 reps
  • Spinal Twist: 5 per side
  • Thoracic Rotations: 10 reps


  • TRX Inverted Rows: 3 x 10
  • TRX Superman: 3 x 8
  • TRX T-Deltoid Fly: 3 x 12
  • TRX Back Extension: 3 x 10
  • TRX Pike: 3 x 6
  • TRX Single-Arm Row: 3 x 10 per arm

Incorporating these TRX exercises into your fitness regimen can significantly enhance back strength, mobility, stability, alignment, and posture. It's important to prioritize quality of movement and progress patiently for the best long-term results.

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FAQ Section

What are the best TRX exercises for strengthening the upper back?

5 TRX exercises to build your upper back muscles include the TRX Row, TRX Y-Deltoid Fly, TRX T-Deltoid Fly, TRX Inverted Row, and TRX Pull-Ups. These exercises target the upper back by engaging the back muscles through suspension training, effectively strengthening your back.

How do TRX straps work to improve back strength?

TRX straps leverage bodyweight and gravity as resistance, allowing for a full range of motion and constant tension on the muscle group being worked.

This creates an effective environment for TRX training to work your back, including both the upper back and lower back, by forcing the muscles to stabilize and move through a complete range of motion.

Can you do pull-ups with TRX for back development?

Yes, TRX pull-ups are a versatile exercise that can be modified to suit different fitness levels. Unlike traditional pull-ups, TRX pull-ups use suspension training principles, allowing you to adjust the difficulty by changing your body angle.

This not only targets the back muscles but also engages the torso, arms, and lower body, making it a comprehensive exercise for strengthening your back.

What's the advantage of a single-arm row with TRX?

The single-arm row with TRX targets specific areas of the back, promoting muscular balance and core stability. This exercise allows for focused engagement on one side of the body at a time, enhancing the ability to squeeze your shoulder blades together and maintain good posture and tension in the back.

It's a critical exercise for those looking to strengthen their back and improve unilateral strength.

How often should you do a TRX back workout?

For optimal results, incorporating different TRX exercises for back strength 2-3 times a week is advisable. Consistency and progression in your TRX back workout ensure that you take care of that back, improve good posture, and perform better in all exercises.

TRX master trainer Kari Woodall suggests incorporating a variety of exercises to target the entire back and avoid plateaus.

Are TRX exercises effective for both upper and lower back?

Absolutely, TRX exercises offer a comprehensive way to strengthen your back, targeting both the upper back muscles and lower back.

Exercises like the TRX Row and TRX Superman effectively engage the entire back, ensuring balanced development and supporting spinal health through suspension training.

How does the single-arm TRX row differ from traditional rows?

The single-arm TRX row focuses on isolating one side of the back at a time, allowing for increased concentration on muscle group engagement and the ability to squeeze your shoulder blades together more effectively.

This isolation helps in correcting imbalances and strengthens the back muscles more efficiently compared to bilateral rows.

What role do TRX straps play in back workouts?

TRX straps are a simple and easy tool that adds versatility to back workouts by allowing for a wide range of exercises.

From pull-ups to rows, the straps provide constant tension and engage multiple muscle groups simultaneously, making them an excellent option for those looking to strengthen their back and improve overall fitness.

How can incorporating TRX exercises into your routine benefit your overall fitness?

Using TRX for back workouts not only helps to strengthen your back but also improves core stability, posture, and muscular endurance. The versatility of TRX training means you can easily integrate it into your current leg workout or use it as a standalone routine to work your back, lower body, and torso, enhancing your ability to perform better in all exercises.

With the durable adjustable straps and your body weight for resistance, the TRX trainer allows performing many effective back exercises anywhere with limited equipment. You control the challenge level and can progress over time.

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My Experience With TRX Back Exercises

Ever tried lifting a heavy bag with one hand? That's the essence of focusing on single arm exercises, and it's a game-changer for your back workout. When I first wrapped my hand around the TRX handle for a single arm row, it felt like I was embarking on a solo adventure, leaving the safety of two-handed exercises behind.

This move isn't just about pulling; it's a full-body dance that demands good posture and tension back in your muscles. I learned the hard way that you've got to lower yourself back with control—not just flop like a fish out of water!

Doing this a few times a week to take care of both sides of my back made me realize how important it is to give each arm its spotlight. It's like making sure both the left and right speakers at a concert work together for effective power transfer, ensuring the music envelops you perfectly.

Single Arm Row

Now, let's dive deeper into the single arm row. Imagine you're an archer pulling back your bow. That's how I feel every time I grab the handles and pull my shoulder blades together.

The key here is to bring your hands back in a way that fires up your lats and increases core activation, turning your body into a powerhouse. It's not just about the back; it's about how to work the whole cylinder of your body, from your legs driving up from the bottom of a squat (which may be part of your current leg workout) to your arms pulling back with all their might.

This exercise prepares your body to perform better, whether you're lifting groceries or swinging a golf club.

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TRX Pull-Ups

And then, there's the king of back exercises: TRX pull-ups. If you've ever dreamed of doing a pull-up but felt intimidated by the traditional bar, TRX offers a friendly handshake.

Starting with TRX pull-ups taught me how to lower myself back gently and how bringing my arms back with control could make a world of difference. It's a thrilling journey away from the anchor point, where every pull feels like you're lifting yourself a bit higher towards your goals.

The beauty of it? You learn to squeeze your shoulder blades together to pull yourself up, a movement that increases core activation and really makes those lats work overtime.

Incorporating these exercises into my routine a few times a week to take care of my back not only improved my strength but also my confidence in what my body could do. It's like discovering a secret handshake with gravity, where every pull and lower back down is a whisper to my muscles saying, "We've got this."

Whether it's the single arm effort, the precision of the single arm row, or the triumphant climb of TRX pull-ups, each movement brings me closer to a back that's not just stronger—it's a reliable partner in every adventure life throws my way.

Adding the Power Pull

If you really want to think about strengthening your back in new ways, try adding the power pull to your routine. This exercise takes the focus on controlled form I learned from the single arm row and adds an extra punch of power.

The squat may be part of your workout, but have you ever thought about combining it with a row? That's exactly what the power pull does. As you drive up from the bottom of the squat position, imagine you’re rotate in a plank so that your hips and shoulders move and work together for effective power transfer.

The unilateral rowing action means one arm fires back while the other reaches forward, trying to slowly push away from the anchor point. It's an incredible way to build coordinated strength between your lower and upper body.

Maintaining Constant Tension

A huge lesson I learned is the importance of maintaining constant pressure through the straps and rowing movement. Often people just focus on the peak contraction when doing back exercises like rows.

But with TRX, you keep tension on those straps the whole time, hands while lowering and lifting. This reminded me that true functional training is about maintain constant tension through a full range of motion.

The feeling when performing the power pull is intensely dynamic and challenging. You stabilize into that squat, fire up through the legs, then explode into rotation and finish with a powerful single arm row to return to starting position.

The metabolic burn and demand on your fast-twitch muscle fibers gives an incredible pump. Just wait until that exercise will revisit you in the form of muscle soreness the next day!

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Y Deltoid Fly

The Y deltoid fly is another great back exercise that will make you really feel the burn. It trains that often neglected upper back area while demanding balance and stability through the shoulders.

Start by standing with feet anchored, core braced, and arms fully extended. Initiate the move by raise your arms overhead into a Y position while simultaneously moving your arms back behind you. You can increase or decrease the challenge here by how far back you lean. By the end of your sets, your entire upper back will let you know it's been worked!

Incorporating moves like the power pull and Y fly expanded my TRX repertoire beyond the basics. It showed me all the unique possibilities for training my back in new ways to build strength through different angles and movement challenges. My advice? Try out some fresh approaches like these yourself to ignite new muscle growth and keep your workouts dynamic.

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  1. TRX exercises for spinal health: A study titled “Three-dimensional corrective exercise therapy for idiopathic scoliosis” discusses the use of three-dimensional corrective exercises for scoliosis, which could potentially include TRX exercises.
  2. TRX Row: An article on the National Academy of Sports Medicine’s blog mentions that scientific reports on exercise programming for older adults, including TRX exercises, have been published in peer-reviewed journals1.
  3. TRX Inverted Row: A peer-reviewed article titled “Can different variations of suspension exercises provide adequate loads and muscle activations for upper body training?” discusses the effectiveness of various suspension exercises, including the TRX inverted row.

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PS: Make sure you check out the rest of our Back Training Guides:

10 Best Kettlebell Back Exercises & Back Workout

5 Best Calisthenics Back Exercises + Calisthenics Back Workout

5 Best Lower Back Exercises + Best Back Exercises Machines

10 Best Resistance Band Back Exercises + Back Workout

11 Best Landmine Exercises For Back & Upper Body

15 Best Smith Machine Back Exercises

Top 3 Back Exercises For A Stronger Back: Build Size And Strength

10 Best Cable Back Workout Exercises