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45 degree hyperextension (arms in front of chest)

45 degree hyperextension (arms in front of chest)

The 45 degree hyperextension with arms in front of the chest is a fantastic exercise that targets the lower back muscles. It is especially effective for strengthening the erector spinae, which play a crucial role in maintaining proper posture and spinal stability. The added resistance from holding your arms in front of your chest engages the muscles of your upper back and shoulders, providing a well-rounded workout for your posterior chain. When performed correctly, this exercise can improve core strength, stability, and help prevent lower back pain. It is commonly used by athletes, weightlifters, and fitness enthusiasts alike to enhance their overall physical performance and functional strength. Incorporating the 45 degree hyperextension into your workout routine can be a valuable addition, as it not only strengthens your lower back but also engages your glutes and hamstrings. Remember to prioritize form over weight and perform the exercise in a controlled manner to avoid any strain or injury. For optimal results, it is best to complement this exercise with a well-rounded fitness routine that includes a variety of exercises targeting different muscle groups.


  • Start by adjusting the hyperextension bench so that the angle is set at 45 degrees.
  • Position yourself on the bench with your thighs resting on the padded section and your upper body parallel to the floor.
  • Cross your arms in front of your chest, or hold a weight plate against your chest for added resistance.
  • Engage your core and slowly lower your upper body towards the floor, allowing your hips to bend slightly.
  • Continue lowering until you feel a stretch in your lower back, but not to the point of discomfort or pain.
  • Pause briefly in this lowered position and then use your lower back muscles to lift your upper body back up to the starting position.
  • Keep your movements controlled and avoid using momentum to lift yourself up.
  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Tips & Tricks

  • Focus on engaging the core muscles throughout the exercise.
  • Start with a light weight or no weight at all to ensure proper form and technique.
  • Maintain a slow and controlled movement to maximize the effectiveness of the exercise.
  • Avoid rounding the back and instead, keep it straight and aligned with the spine.
  • Remember to breathe properly - exhale on the way up and inhale on the way down.
  • Keep the neck relaxed and in a neutral position, avoiding excessive tension.
  • Gradually increase the weight and intensity as your strength and endurance improve.
  • Perform the exercise on a stable surface and use a mat or cushion for added comfort.
  • If you experience any pain or discomfort, stop the exercise and consult with a professional.
  • Always warm up before performing the exercise to prepare the muscles and joints for activity.