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10 Strength Exercises To Get Rid of Lower Back Fat

A trainer shares his best exercises to help you develop a slimmer lower back.
FACT CHECKED BY Alexa Mellardo

Reducing lower back fat can be challenging, mostly because localized weight loss doesn't necessarily exist. To develop a slimmer lower back, you can prioritize a workout regimen tailored to enhancing lean muscle in your posterior chain and core; these strength exercises for lower back fat are an excellent place to start.

Concentrate on exercises that engage your hamstrings, glutes, erectors, and abdominal muscles, employing diverse positions and movements for optimal results. Complement your fitness efforts with a balanced diet, ample hydration, and adequate recovery to accelerate your progress toward achieving your desired physique!

This terrain isn't unfamiliar to me; as an experienced fitness coach, I'm often asked questions like these. I've created a set of 10 strength exercises to get rid of lower back fat, firmly grounded in the fundamental pillars of exercise, dietary precision, and effective recovery. Carefully examine these movements and consider incorporating a few into your weekly workout regimen for notable results.

Supermans

illustration of superman back extensions exercise
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Supermans (or back extensions) are as isolated as they get when considering shaping and strengthening your lower back muscles. However, they are pivotal for engaging your erectors paired with your glutes to solidify strength and the ability to erase lower back fat.

Start by lying face down with your arms extended in front of you and legs stretched out behind. Engage your core to stabilize your spine, then simultaneously lift your arms, chest, and legs off the ground. Hold this position for a few seconds, focusing on squeezing your glutes and lower back muscles. Slowly lower back down with control.

Complete 10 to 15 reps with 60 to 90 seconds of rest between sets. Opt for sets with reps; otherwise, switch things up by completing three to four sets of 30-second holds.

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Suitcase Deadlifts

The suitcase deadlift targets multiple muscle groups, building lower-body strength while enhancing core and low-back stability. It engages leg muscles like the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps to lift the kettlebell while activating core muscles such as the obliques, transverse abdominis, rectus abdominis (six-pack abs), and erectors to maintain balance and posture.

Start with your feet shoulder-width apart and a kettlebell beside one foot. Maintain a neutral spine as you grip the kettlebell handle with one hand and bend at the hips and knees to lift it off the ground. Drive through your heels to stand up straight, keeping the kettlebell close to your body. Pause briefly at the top, then lower the kettlebell with control. Repeat for the desired reps on each side, focusing on core engagement and proper form.

Perform three sets of 10 to 15 reps per side with 90 seconds of rest between sets.

Good Mornings

good morning exercise
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Good mornings are a highly effective exercise for strengthening the posterior chain, comprising muscles like the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. This move primarily targets these muscle groups by hinging at the hips and lowering the torso forward while keeping the back straight, promoting improved stability and power.

Strengthening the posterior chain enhances athletic performance and plays a crucial role in reducing fat in the lower back region. As these muscles become stronger and more defined, they help support the spine and improve overall posture, which can reduce excess fat in the lower back area.

To execute a good morning, begin by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a weight, such as a barbell, dumbbells, or kettlebells, either across your upper back or in front of your chest. Engage your core muscles to stabilize your spine and ensure a straight back throughout the movement. Slowly hinge at the hips, lowering your torso forward until it's parallel to the ground or slightly above. Keep a slight bend in your knees to prevent strain on your lower back and maintain tension in your hamstrings. Keep the weight close to your body as you descend, focusing on feeling the stretch in your hamstrings and glutes. Return to the starting position by engaging your hamstrings and glutes and standing tall.

Complete three to four sets of five to 12 reps with 90 seconds of rest between sets.

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Single-leg Romanian Deadlift (RDL)

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Single-leg Romanian deadlifts are an incredible exercise for strengthening your posterior chain. They target your hamstrings and glutes through unilateral training while enhancing stability and size. You'll feel a deep stretch in your hamstrings, aiding mobility, while your core and lower back muscles help stabilize your movement. Begin by controlling yourself with a squat rack or wall, gradually advancing to free-standing single-leg RDLs as your balance and confidence grow.

Stand with your feet hip-width apart, slightly bend one knee, and extend the other leg straight back. Hinge forward at your hips while keeping your back straight, lowering a dumbbell or kettlebell toward the ground on the same side as your supporting leg. Maintain a neutral spine and engage your core for stability. Pause when your torso is parallel to the ground, feeling the stretch in your hamstring. Drive through your heel to return to the starting position, squeezing your glutes at the top.

Perform eight to 12 reps per side with 90 seconds of rest between sets.

Suitcase Carry

A suitcase carry is a viable option when looking for strength exercises to reduce lower back fat. Suitcase carries rely on your erectors, core, and other lower-back muscles to stabilize the torso as your body engages in anti-flexion (bending) movements. The unilateral nature of this exercise inherently ramps up the intensity of the movement.

Start by selecting a suitable weight, such as a kettlebell or dumbbell, and hold it firmly in one hand by your side. Stand tall with your feet shoulder-width apart, engaging your core for stability. As you walk, maintain an upright position and steady breathing, focusing on balance and avoiding leaning to either side. Aim to walk for a certain distance or time, depending on your fitness level, while holding the weight.

Complete three to four sets of 30 seconds per side with 90 seconds of rest between sets.

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Side Plank with Leg Lift

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Side planks with a leg lift embody a comprehensive approach to attacking lower back fat in your fitness regimen. Strengthening these muscle groups tones your core and fortifies the surrounding areas of your lower back and hips. Begin with a modest one to two-inch leg lift, then advance by heightening the lift or extending the duration for optimal results.

Start in a side plank position with your elbow under your shoulder, lifting your hips to form a straight line. Lift your top leg straight up, engaging your hip muscles, and hold briefly before lowering it. Switch sides and repeat.

Perform three sets of 15 to 20 reps per side with 60 seconds of rest between sets

Glute Bridges

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The classic glute bridge is a stellar strength exercise for lower back fat due to the versatility in its execution. Whether using just your body weight, incorporating dumbbells, or adding heavier resistance with a barbell, there are various ways to perform this movement. Not only are glute bridges practical for getting rid of lower back fat, but they're also an effective activation exercise during warm-ups and daily maintenance routines.

To perform glute bridges, lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat, hip-width apart. Squeeze your core, then push your hips up, squeezing your glutes at the top, maintaining a straight line from shoulders to knees. Slowly lower your hips, focusing on controlled movement. Keep your core engaged and avoid excessive arching when completing your reps. Coach tip: Pause at the top of each rep for two to three seconds to reinforce glute development.

Compete three sets of eight to 12 reps with 90 seconds of rest between sets.

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Bent-over Rows

Woman doing Dumbbell bent over row
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Dumbbell bent-over rows offer significant benefits for lifters who minimize lower back fat and enhance strength. This exercise targets the lower and upper back, lats, and biceps while stabilizing the core. Dumbbell bent-over rows are also versatile, allowing you to utilize dumbbells, kettlebells, barbells, and bands to keep your workouts fresh and avoid stagnation.

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart to perform dumbbell bent-over rows, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Hinge at the hips, keeping your back straight and chest up, with your torso at a 45-degree angle (close to parallel with the floor). Engage your core to stabilize and prevent rotation. Pull the dumbbell toward your hip, keeping your elbow close to your body, then lower it with control.

Perform three to four sets of eight to 15 reps with 60 to 90 seconds of rest between sets.

Kettlebell Swings

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Kettlebell swings pack a punch in your fitness arsenal, igniting your posterior chain and sculpting lean muscle in your hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. They're dynamic and perfect for interval weight-loss workouts, cranking up the intensity and aiding in the battle against lower back fat.

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, grasping a kettlebell while standing tall. Hinge at your hips, maintaining straight arms, then explosively drive your hips forward to swing the kettlebell to chest height, powered by momentum from your lower body. Return the kettlebell between your legs in the hinge position and repeat the movement.

Complete 10 to 15 reps with 60 seconds of rest between sets. For interval style sets, complete 40 seconds of work with 20 seconds of rest.

Russian Twists

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Russian twists are one of the best strength exercises for lower back fat, as they zero in on the often neglected transverse abdominis while targeting the erectors (lower back muscles) with a rotational approach. This engagement of the erectors aids in minimizing lower back fat by strengthening and toning the muscles surrounding that area. As you twist, the dynamic movement challenges your core from various angles, promoting better definition and functionality.

Start by sitting on the ground with your knees bent and heels on the floor, maintaining a slight lean and straight back. Hold a weight or medicine ball with both hands. Twist your torso to the right, bringing the weight or ball to the outside of your right hip. Return to the center before twisting to the left, repeating the movement.

Perform three sets of 10 to 20 reps per side with 60 seconds of rest between sets.

Jarrod Nobbe
Jarrod Nobbe is a USAW National Coach, Sports Performance Coach, Personal Trainer, and writer, and has been involved in health and fitness for the past 12 years. Read more about Jarrod