When they're wearing long sleeve tops, many of my training clients don't think much about their back muscles. But with warmer weather nearly on its way (along with opportunities to wear cute dresses and bathing suits), a lot of people tell me they want to focus more on toning and strengthening their back—especially my clients over 40.

Once women are in their 40s, they typically lose up to 8% of their muscle mass (back muscles included) per decade. That decline only worsens when you factor in how much daily strain we put on our back. Everything from hunching over a computer screen at work to carrying around DDs can seriously compromise back strength and function.

While there's no such thing as spot reduction (sorry!), smart strength training is arguably the single-best way to gain confidence in showing off your back and slow muscle decline, which is a win for your metabolism, too. Ready to muscle up? Start by integrating seven of my favourite back- and confidence-defining moves into your workout routine.

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