The FST-7 Back Workout | The Ultimate Guide!


The upper back is one of the most difficult body parts to develop. There are so many different upper back muscle groups you have to train, including your lats, traps and spinal erectors.

Most people also have a really hard developing a good mind-muscle connection with their upper back musculature.

There are many great bodybuilding program that you can use to develop a world-class back. However, one of the most popular ones is the FST-7 program. If you want to learn how to build a massive upper back with Hany Rambod’s FST-7 training program then this article is for you!

Introduction

  • Part 1: The FST-7 Training Program
  • Part 2: The FST-7 Back Workouts

In this comprehensive guide I will teach you everything you need to know about how to build a massive back using the FST-7 training program.

Hany Rambod created the FST-7 training program to help advanced bodybuilders take their training to the next level. FST-7 literally stands for “fascia stretch training.” Hany Rambod likes to finish his upper back workouts by performing 7 sets on an exercise with 45-60 seconds rest between sets.

Hany says that this technique actually stretches out the fascia surrounding the upper back muscles. Check it out:

“FST-7 stands for fascia stretch training. The 7 is the amount of sets that you do at the end. The expansion of the fascia is what is going to trigger the growth.

So when we go in there and trigger the ultimate pump, you’re going to get really good round muscle bellies with maximum separation.”

A typical FST-7 back workout would include 3-5 heavy loading exercises, followed by the FST-7 exercise with very short rest periods.

Hany Rambod says his FST-7 workouts give you the best of both worlds: high intensity training AND high volume training for maximum upper back development. Here is a simple FST-7 back workout that you can try. Check it out:

FST-7 Back Workout #1

  • Exercise #1: Lat pulldown (medium / supinated grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #2: Lat pulldown (narrow / neutral grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #3: Bent over ez-bar row (wide / supinated grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #4: Seated cable row (v-handle), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #5: Straight arm cable pullover, 7 sets of 10-15 rep, 45 seconds rest

Here is the training video:

Hany Rambod says the key to building a huge upper back is to establish a great mind-muscle connection. He tells his athletes to focus on contracting the lats, traps and rhomboids as hard as possible on every rep.

Hany uses some unusual exercises in his upper back workouts. For example, he really likes to focus on supinated grip pulldowns and rows. Hany says most bodybuilders have underdeveloped lower lats, and the supinated grip lets you target this muscle much more effectively.

“Everyone asks me why do I like to do the reverse grip rows so much? I like to do both but most people end up having a weaker lower lat than an upper lat. So I like to emphasize the lower lat by using the reverse grip.”

Hany Rambod has his client finish this workout with 7 sets of cable rope pullovers. These are the FST-7 sets that Hany uses to stretch out the fascia of the lats and upper back. Here is Hany Rambod describing this technique:

“We’re going to start with 4 base exercises and our 5th exercise is a FST-7 set. FST stands for fascia stretch training and the 7 stands for the pump sets we’re going to do at the end of the workout.

The first 4 exercises are designed to build strength and power and the 5th exercise is designed to give the muscle the full, pumped up look.”

The cable rope pullover is probably Hany Rambod’s favorite exercise to use for the FST-7 sets. However, he also likes to use lat pulldowns and other lat-focused exercises for these sets. Check it out:

FST-7 Back Workout #2

  • Exercise #1: Machine pulldown (narrow / neutral grip), 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps**
  • Exercise #2: Barbell bent over row (supinated grip), 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #3: Seated cable row (v-handle), 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #4: Lat pulldown (medium / supinated grip), 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #5: Lat pulldown (wide / overhand grip), 7 sets of 10-15 reps, 45 seconds rest

**Train to failure, then perform several partial reps in the stretched position

Here is the training video:

This is another normal looking FST-7 back workout. Hany says that this workout was more focused on the lats to make the upper back appear wider.

“The purpose of this back workout is to really widen the lats and also give that 3-dimensional look from the back.”

Throughout this back workout Hany Rambod really places a huge emphasis on getting strong muscular contractions in the upper back. He says that contracting your lats correctly is absolutely critical.

He likes his athletes to “flare” his lats during pulldowns and rows as if they were performing a front lat spread pose. He also has his athletes pose in between sets to further reinforce that mind-muscle connection.

“Back is a finesse body part. You want to be able to manipulate your back into growing. You’re not going to just throw a bunch of weight on the bar.

That’s great for PRs and everything, but for actually growing your back, especially your lower lats, you have to feel the muscle working.”

Here is another FST-7 upper back workout that you can try. Check it out:

FST-7 Back Workout #3

  • Exercise #1: Nautilus pulldown (wide / supinated grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #2: Nautilus pulldown (wide / overhand grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #3: One-arm DB row, 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #4: Lying DB pullover, 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #5: Barbell bent over row (supinated grip), 7 sets of 10-15 reps, 45 seconds rest

Here is the training video:

As usual Hany Rambod places a huge emphasis on feeling the lats contract on every single exercise.

“Back is a finesse movement, it is a finesse muscle. So you really need to get that mind-muscle connection and not use your ego because you’ll end up using your arms and your lats.

You should use your arms as hooks and really focus on contracting your lats.”

This time Hany Rambod decides to finish the workout with one of his favorite upper back exercises: the supinated grip barbell row. This is an exercise that Dorian Yates popularized in the 1990s, and it is still a great exercise today.

Hany says that this is one of the best exercises for targeting your lower lats. Hany says that using the supinated grip row for your final FST-7 exercise is a great way to bring up your lagging lower lats.

“We’re going back to the very end and we’re getting good contractions on the bent over row.

We want to re-emphasize the squeezing of his back, not only at the beginning of the workout but also at the end of the workout to continue working on his form.”

So far we’ve looked at FST-7 workouts where Hany Rambod uses his fascia-stretching technique at the end of the workout.

With his more advanced bodybuilders Hany sometimes performs the FST-7 sets at the beginning of the workout instead. He calls this a “preload” technique because you are pumping your back full of blood and pre-exhausting the lats before moving onto heavier compound exercises.

Here is a workout where Hany kicks things off with 7 sets on the straight arm cable pullover. Check it out:

FST-7 Back Workout #4

  • Exercise #1: Straight arm cable rope pullovers, 7 sets of 10-15 reps**, 45 seconds rest
  • Exercise #2: Lat pulldown (medium / supinated grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #3: Seated cable row (narrow / semi-supinated grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps
  • Exercise #4: Machine chest supported row (medium / neutral grip), 4 sets of 8-12 reps

**Perform 1 set of straight arm pullovers, then immediately perform 1 set of cable rope rows. Repeat for 7 total rounds.

Here is the training video:

Here is Hany Rambod describing his pre-exhaust technique:

“We want to focus on activating this upper lats and we’re going to do that with the straight arm pulldowns.

We’re going to preload his workout with the FST-7 and then focus on reverse grip pulldowns to target the lower lats.”

Hany actually has his client superset cable pulldowns with cable rows. He performs 10-15 reps on the straight arm cable pullover, then immediately performs 10-15 reps on the cable rows.

Hany loves to use high-intensity techniques like this to increase the time under tension of his sets and make his back work even harder.

Conclusion

Hany Rambod is one of the world’s top bodybuilding coaches. He has trained some of the greatest bodybuilders of all time including 4x Mr. Olympia champion Jay Cutler and 8x Mr. Olympia champion Phil Heath.

Hany Rambod’s goal when he performs his FST-7 back workouts is to get strong muscular contractions in his lats and to really feel the target muscle working on every rep. He also likes to use specific exercises to target his lower lats, such as supinated grip lat pulldowns and supinated grip rows.

If you are stuck at a back training plateau then you have to try Hany Rambod’s FST-7 back workouts. They may be just what you need to take your training to the next level.

“The mind is the limit. As long as the mind can envision the fact that you can do something, you can do it, as long as you really believe 100 percent.”

Thank you for reading and I wish you the best of luck on your strength training journey!

 

Dr. Mike Jansen, PT, DPT

What's going on! My name is Dr. Mike Jansen, I'm the creator of Revolutionary Program Design. If you want to take your training to the next level, then you've come to the right place... My goal is to make RPD the #1 strength training resource available anywhere in the world!

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