Generation IronGet the aesthetics of a classic bodybuilder.

The V taper was a hallmark of the classic bodybuilders in the days of Frank Zane, Sergio Oliva, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. It’s remained a staple to this day and it’s a look that any bodybuilder should aim for. Besides having a defined chest and abs, obtaining the V taper requires working the shoulders as well as the upper and lower back. Here are some tips that will get you closer to coveted V shaped form.

Contraction is Key

Don’t be lazy when performing any of these movements. A conscious effort to maintain form and technique is key to muscle development. The contractions while performing each exercise will offer better results. Controlled and slow motions are important to building up the key muscle groups.

Lat Pull Downs


This exercise is great for packing on definition and size onto your lats. By performing the exercise in a slower, controlled fashion, you’ll be able to see the best results.


Generation Iron Chin Ups


The chin-up can be performed in a number of different ways in order to work different portions of the lat muscles. Both actions are performed overhand. The wider grip is designed to work the outer and upper lats and the narrower grip works the lower lats.

Yates Row


The Yates Row popularized by none other than Dorian Yates himself is a great exercise for the middle and lower region of the back. As mentioned before slow motions and even pausing when the bar is lifted helps isolate the back muscles to give them a great burn.

The Snatch Lift


This powerlifting classic will be paramount in building breadth in the shoulders and traps. The movements for this one are less about measured contractions and more about explosion.

Three-Way Lateral Raises


The three way lateral raises will be great for working out your shoulders and upper back. The regular and forward laterals target those shoulder muscles while the bent raise will work the upper back.


What workouts do you use to develop you V taper? Share you ideas in the comments below and be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


Header image courtesy of beastmotivation.com

Jonathan Salmon
Managing editor of Generation Iron, Jonathan Salmon is a writer, martial arts instructor, and geek culture enthusiast. He has been writing about bodybuilding, combat sports, and strength sports for over 8 years. Check out his YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Sound Cloud for in-depth MMA analysis.