How to build a V-shape back with calisthenics exercises

Most, if not all men that train desire a v-shape back. It is viewed as a very manly physical trait and most men can agree, it delivers a very powerful look on most men that wear it. That being said, while some men are naturally blessed with a v-shape back, most of us will certainly have to work for such a figure.

But fear not, for this article will be a guide to those who are clueless on where to start. More specifically, in this article, I’m going to go over 4 of the best v-shape back workouts. Each workout will serve its own unique purpose in developing this physique so try to ensure you read carefully, let’s get into this!


If pull-ups were not included on this list, then you will have surely run into a scandal. When it comes to building a wider back one thing is certain, pull-ups will provide you with the strongest foundation in this area. Let’s delve a little deeper into the movement.

How to perform pull-ups

To perform pull-ups, you will need some form of pull-up bar that can handle your weight. Once you have this, begin the movement by standing directly below the bar. Extend your arms to slightly larger than shoulder-width apart and then grip the bar.

Ensuring that your grip is tight, cross your legs over each other for stability, and then pull all the way up. When your face reaches the bar, you can lower yourself back down. During the movement, ensure that your chest is pointing up and that you are squeezing your back. When done correctly, you will feel the tension in both your forearms and your latissimus dorsi – lats.

Australian pull-ups

Once you have effectively mastered the pull-up, you should now be able to handle this much more advanced pull-up variation. The Australian pull-up is no joke, it not only requires a very similar pulling motion as the first movement on this list, but it also requires you to keep yourself elevated throughout the entire movement.

How to perform Australian pull-ups

To set up for this movement, you can either use gymnastic rings or a pull-up bar. The pull-up bar itself should be lowered down as you will be horizontally performing this movement. So, to begin this movement, start by gripping the bar/rings at a grip that is greater than shoulder-width apart.

Whilst you are gripping the bar/rings, place your feet together and then straighten your legs out. If done correctly, this will look as though you are performing an upside-down plank. With your form firmly executed, you can now begin by pulling yourself up until your elbows are locked out. Be sure to lower yourself slowly to induce more muscular damage.

Front levers

Out of all the movements on this list, the front lever certainly takes the cake in terms of difficulty. Not only will you have to acquire great strength to position yourself for this hold, but you will require even greater strength to pull this off for extended periods of time.

How to perform front levers 

To grasp the correct posture for this static hold, you must begin by gripping either the bar or gym rings at a shoulder-width position. Pull yourself up and slightly over the bar/rings – (this will allow you to get into position). 

Once you have done all this, slowly lower yourself down. As you lower yourself down, pull the bar towards your upper chest and straighten out your legs. Once your legs are completely straightened out, extend your arms. After you have completed all the steps, your body should be positioned horizontally below the bar/rings. Hold this pose until failure for increased strength.


Last but not least on this list are muscle-ups. Muscle-ups will help you achieve a v shape back in a few ways, one, they will engage your lats, two, they may enlarge your side delts. The side delts are the muscle located on the shoulders, growing these helps give the illusion of a wider frame/bigger back.

How to perform muscle-ups

To begin this exercise, you will need a pull-up bar. While this exercise can be done with gym rings, they are not the most ideal. Firstly, start by gripping the bar slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Then, explosively pull yourself up to the bar until the bar reaches your chin. Swiftly alternate your arm positioning by jolting your body up and simultaneously pushing down with your arms.

You should push all the way down until your arms reach full extension and the bar reaches roughly waist level. Once you have mastered this technique, it should look like the beginning of a pull-up followed by a half push-up on the bar. Keep in mind, this exercise is very physically exerting and it will take practice.

So how do we get a v-shape back?

As a beginner, these exercises will be very difficult. Not only will the techniques be hard to grasp, but the amount of muscular force you will have to apply may be beyond your abilities.

However, like anything, practice and hard work are all you will need to master these exercises. As for the v shape back exercises themselves, I would advise utilizing them all if your goal is primarily to build a wider – v-shape back.

As always, train carefully and always warm up beforehand to reduce the risk of an injury