A strong back is a healthy back. Regular strength training for the back can be a great way to prolong your back’s overall longevity and health throughout the course of life. There are multiple ways to strengthen the back, and one of the most popular ways to train the lower and middle back specifically, is with back extension machines. Back extension machines are designed to strengthen the hamstrings, glutes, and lumbar, which all play a vital role in our core stability.
Back extension machines look relatively simple from afar, but they’re all created slightly differently. For example, some will work better for beginners, while others are designed to be a little more advanced. In this round-up, we dive into the best back extension machines for multiple purposes.
Best Back Extensions
Valor Fitness CB-13 Adjustable Back Extension
The Valor Fitness CB-13 Adjustable Back Extension is a fantastic option for fitness enthusiasts who want a reliable and true back extension machine similar to what they would find in a commercial gym. This machine has heavy duty 12-gauge steel construction and can support up to 350 lbs.
Valor Fitness CB-13 Adjustable Back Extension Pros
- Strong and reliable 2″ x 2″ 12-gauge steel construction frame.
- Dual padding for comfort for a variety of movements.
- 3-year warranty on the frame, 2-years on the padding, 1-year on the popper pins.
The Valor Fitness CB-13 Adjustable Back Extension is a great option for fitness enthusiasts who want a solid, simple, and true back extension machine.
Best for Versatility
soges Multi-Functional Adjustable Bench
The soges Multi-Functional Adjustable Bench is an awesome piece of equipment for the fitness enthusiast that wants versatility for their investment. The back extension on the adjustable bench can be detached, so you can use this as a true back extension machine, or as an adjustable bench.
soges Multi-Functional Adjustable Bench Pros
- Versatile piece of equipment with adjustable bench and detachable back extension.
- Heavy duty powder coated metal frame can support up to 660 lbs.
- Pads on the back extension and bench promote overall comfort.
The soges Multi-Functional Adjustable Bench is a great option for fitness enthusiasts that want a back extension, but also a versatile bench to provide variety.
Finer Form Upgraded Multi-Functional Bench
The Finer Form Upgraded Multi-Functional Bench is a great option for the fitness enthusiast on a budget. This back extension and adjustable bench has a strong construction and can provide versatility to any home gym for a fair value.
Finer Form Upgraded Multi-Functional Bench Pros
- Sturdy construction that can support up to 600 lbs.
- Versatile back extension machine and adjustable bench accommodate variety.
- High-density foam padding make this a comfortable option.
The Finer Form Upgraded Multi-Functional Bench is a great versatile back extension and adjustable bench option for the value shopper!
Best for Space
Stamina Hyper Bench
The Stamina Hyper Bench is a great, simply back extension option for the space conscious fitness enthusiast. This machine folds up and can support basic back and core training with relative ease.
Stamina Hyper Bench Pros
- Decently sturdy construction with steel frame.
- Pad has durable stitched vinyl upholstery.
- Folds up for easy storage.
The Stamina Hyper Bench is a great option for the apartment dweller or fitness enthusiast that wants a fold up machine to save them space.
CAP Strength 45 Degree Hyperextension
The CAP Strength 45 Degree Hyperextension is an awesome option for the fitness enthusiast that wants a true back extension machine, but may not want it to be super elaborate in design. This machine is constructed pretty solidly and offers three adjustment sizes.
CAP Strength 45 Degree Hyperextension Pros
- Standard back extension machine with three adjustable heights.
- Sturdy steel construction and comfortable pads.
- Fair price for a back extension machine.
The CAP Strength 45 Degree Hyperextension is a solid option for the fitness enthusiast that wants to equip their home gym with a standard back extension machine.
How We Picked
We picked every back extension on this list based on two core criteria. First, we assessed the overall construction and warranty each back extension offered. Second, we looked at their versatility and what type of fitness enthusiast they would benefit most.
The construction that goes into a back machine is important for two reasons. First, you want your investment to go the distance, and secondly, you want the back machine to hold up to serious workouts.
To assess each back extension’s construction, we looked at three main criteria:
The culmination of these three construction traits help us decide which back extensions are the best constructed and can stand up to even the toughest workouts. Generally, you want a back extension to have a steel frame, a poundage limit provided, and at least a year long warranty.
The second attribute we assess for back extensions is their versatility. Generally, back extensions will come in two options. The first option is a plain back extension with no attachments, and the second option is a back extension connected to a bench.
Both options are great for progressing in the gym, but one should consider how they want to use the back extension most before investing. For example, some fitness enthusiasts already have a bench and only want a back extension, while others may want the best of both worlds. There’s no “best” when it comes to versatility, it all comes down to your needs and wants.
1. What muscles are worked with back extensions?
BarBend: Multiple muscles can be worked with back extension machines. The primary way fitness enthusiasts use them is by performing hyper-extensions which work the hamstrings, glutes, and lumbar. You can also add dumbbells into the mix and do a row at the top to work the middle and upper back. If you turn your body angle sideways you can target obliques, and if you turn around, then you can work the core.
2. How many times a week should I train with back extensions?
BarBend: That totally depends on your goals and program. Generally, back extensions will be performed on back days or days you’re training the posterior chain.
Back extensions can be an extremely useful piece of equipment when used correctly. When looking to invest in a new back extension machine, it’s best to consider their overall construction and how you plan to use them both.