For those looking to up their weight on foundational exercises like squats and deadlifts, the Good Morning engages the assisting muscles for bigger gains. For those who have spent too much time on glamour muscles like the abs and quads, the movement balances oft-neglected posterior muscles. Say “Good morning!” to forgotten power friends: the hamstrings, glutes and lower back muscles.
Step 1: Place a barbell across the upper back on the traps (trapezius muscles). Use light weight, even just an exercise band is good to start. Grab with a firm, wide, but comfortable grip. Stand with legs shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent, chest out and eyes forward.
Step 2: Begin the movement by pushing glutes and hips backward. Keeping shoulders back and straight and maintaining an arched back, lower the chest to the ground with eyes still looking forward.
Step 3: Bring the torso as close to parallel with the floor as possible. Engage the hamstring and glutes and push hips forward to return to the starting position. Keep knees bent throughout the entire movement to avoid hyperextending. Do 2-4 sets of 10-12 reps.
*Use just body weight if the barbell is too heavy or the back weakens and loses its arch before the torso can be lowered to parallel.
Demonstrated by Mike Lynch, a personal trainer with 20 years’ experience and the owner of lynchfit.com.