The pursuit of a sculpted back not only enhances aesthetics but also improves posture and overall strength. For many of my clients, targeting the area commonly referred to as “bra flab” is a priority. These workouts focus on toning and strengthening the muscles in the back to help reduce excess fat and create a more defined silhouette. Incorporate these six effective back workouts for bra flab into your routine to achieve a leaner, more toned upper body. Remember to prioritize proper form and technique to maximize the benefits of each exercise.

Keep reading to learn all about my six best back workouts for bra flab, and when you’re finished, be sure to check out I Tried 3 Pairs of Brooks Running Shoes & One Beats the Rest by a Mile.

Workout #1: Pull-up Variations

This list of back workouts for bra flab kicks off with pull-up variations. Pull-ups are a classic exercise for targeting the upper back, shoulders, and arms. Variations of this exercise can provide a challenging workout while effectively toning the muscles responsible for bra flab.

1. Wide-Grip Pull-ups

woman doing pull-ups
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Grab the pull-up bar with your hands wider than shoulder-width apart, palms facing away from you. Hang onto the bar freely with your arms fully extended. Engage your back muscles, and pull your body upward until your chin reaches or clears the bar. Slowly lower yourself back down to the starting position. Perform three sets of eight to 12 reps.

2. Reverse-Grip Pull-ups

Grip the pull-up bar with your palms facing toward you and your hands shoulder-width apart. Hang onto the bar freely with your arms fully extended. Pull yourself up until your chin is above the bar. Lower yourself back down to the starting position. Perform three sets of eight to 12 reps.

3. Commando Pull-ups

Begin holding onto the pull-up bar with both hands. Pull yourself up toward one hand, bringing that shoulder toward the bar. Lower yourself back down, and repeat on the other side. Alternate sides for each repetition. Perform three sets of eight to 12 reps on each side.

Workout #2: Bent-Over Rows

Bent-over rows target the middle and lower back muscles, helping to strengthen and define the area commonly referred to as bra flab. This exercise also engages the core for added stability and balance.

1. Dumbbell Bent-Over Rows

illustration of dumbbell bent-over row
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Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing each other. Bend at the waist, keeping your back straight and chest up, until your torso is almost parallel to the ground. Pull the dumbbells toward your waist, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position. Perform three sets of 10 to 15 reps.

2. Barbell Bent-Over Rows

woman doing barbell row, concept of back workouts for bra flab
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Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, holding a barbell with an overhand grip. Hinge at the hips, keeping your back straight and chest up, until your torso is almost parallel to the ground. Pull the barbell toward your waist, keeping your elbows close to your body. Lower the barbell back down to the starting position. Perform three sets of eight to 12 reps.

3. Resistance Band Rows

Anchor a resistance band at chest height. Hold the ends of the band with your arms extended, palms facing each other. Pull the band toward the waist, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Slowly release back to the starting position. Perform three sets of 12 to 15 reps.

Workout #3: Lat Pulldowns

Lat pulldowns are an excellent exercise for targeting the latissimus dorsi muscles, which contribute to the width and definition of the back. This exercise can help reduce bra flab and create a more toned upper body.

1. Wide-Grip Lat Pulldowns

lat pulldown illustration, concept of back workouts for bra flab
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Sit at a lat pulldown machine with your knees positioned under the pads. Grasp the bar with your hands wider than shoulder-width apart, palms facing away. Pull the bar down toward the chest, squeezing the shoulder blades together. Slowly release the bar back up to the starting position. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

2. Close-Grip Lat Pulldowns

Sit at a lat pulldown machine with your knees positioned under the pads. Grasp the bar with your hands closer than shoulder-width apart, palms facing away. Pull the bar down toward the chest, focusing on engaging the middle back muscles. Slowly release the bar back up to the starting position. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

3. Single-Arm Lat Pulldowns

Attach a single handle to the lat pulldown machine. Sit facing the machine with one knee positioned under the pad. Grasp the handle with one hand, palm facing away. Pull the handle down toward the chest, focusing on engaging the lat muscles. Slowly release the handle back up to the starting position. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps on each arm.

Workout #4: Deadlifts

Deadlifts are a compound exercise that primarily targets the back, glutes, and hamstrings. Including deadlifts in your back workout routine can help strengthen the muscles surrounding the ‘bra flab’ area while promoting overall back strength and stability.

1. Conventional Deadlifts

barbell deadlift
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Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and a barbell on the ground in front of you. Bend at your hips and knees, keeping your back flat and chest up, to grip the barbell with both hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Engage your core, and drive through your heels to lift the barbell off the ground, standing up tall. Lower the barbell back down to the ground by hinging at your hips and bending your knees. Perform three sets of six to eight reps.

2. Romanian Deadlifts

illustration of dumbbell deadlift, concept of back workouts for bra flab
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Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a barbell or dumbbells in front of your thighs with an overhand grip. Hinge at your hips, keeping your back flat and chest up, as you slowly lower the weights toward the ground while maintaining a slight bend in your knees. Feel a stretch in your hamstrings as you lower the weights until you feel a slight pull. Engage your hamstrings and glutes to return to the starting position, squeezing your glutes at the top. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

3. Sumo Deadlifts

sumo deadlift, concept of back workouts for bra flab
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Stand with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes pointed slightly outward, and a barbell on the ground between your feet. Grip the barbell with both hands using an overhand grip, hands inside of your legs. Keep your back straight, chest up, and core engaged as you lift the barbell by straightening your hips and knees. Lower the barbell back down to the ground by bending your hips and knees. Perform three sets of eight to 10 reps.

Workout #5: T-Bar Rows

T-Bar rows are an effective back exercise that targets the middle and upper back muscles, including the rhomboids, traps, and lats. Incorporating T-bar rows into your routine can help sculpt and define the muscles in the bra flab area.

1. T-Bar Rows with Handle

Place a T-bar row handle into the designated slot on the T-bar row machine. Load weight plates onto the opposite end of the handle to provide resistance. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, hinge at your hips to bend over, and grasp the handles with both hands. Pull the handles toward your abdomen, retracting your shoulder blades and keeping your elbows close to your body. Slowly lower the handles back down until your arms are fully extended. Perform three sets of eight to 10 reps.

2. T-Bar Rows with Barbell

Place a barbell into the designated slot on the T-bar row machine. Load weight plates onto the end of the barbell to provide resistance. Straddle the barbell with your feet shoulder-width apart, and hinge at your hips to bend over. Grasp the barbell with both hands, palms facing toward you, and pull the barbell toward your abdomen. Lower the barbell back down until your arms are fully extended. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

3. T-Bar Rows with V-Bar Attachment

Attach a V-bar handle to the T-bar row machine. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, and hinge at your hips to bend over. Grasp the V-bar handle with both hands, palms facing each other. Pull the V-bar toward your abdomen, retracting your shoulder blades and keeping your elbows close to your body. Slowly lower the V-bar back down until your arms are fully extended. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

Workout #6: Back Extension Series

This back workout series focuses on reducing bra flab by targeting and strengthening the muscles in the upper and lower back. By incorporating exercises specifically designed to engage the back muscles effectively, such as back extensions on the Roman chair, dumbbell pullovers, and hyperextensions, this workout routine aims to sculpt and tone the entire back area.

1. Back Extensions on Roman Chair

Position yourself on a Roman chair with your feet secured under the footpads and your upper body hanging freely. Cross your arms over your chest or place your hands behind your head. Engage your lower back muscles to lift your torso upward until it’s in line with your hips. Lower yourself back down with control. Perform three sets of 12 to 15 reps.

2. Dumbbell Pullovers

dumbbell pullover, concept of back workouts for bra flab
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Lie flat on a bench with only your upper back resting on it, feet flat on the floor. (You can also do this exercise while lying on the floor.) Hold dumbbells above your chest, arms slightly bent. Lower the weights back behind your head while keeping your arms slightly bent. Return the dumbbells to the starting position using your back muscles. Perform three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

3. Hyperextensions

Lie face down on a hyperextension bench with your hips at the edge and your feet secured under the footpads. Cross your arms over your chest or place your hands behind your head. Engage your lower back muscles to lift your upper body upward until it’s aligned with your hips. Lower yourself back down with control. Perform three sets of 12 to 15 reps.

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