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45 Degree VS 90 Degree HyperExtensions Explained

45 Degree VS 90 Degree HyperExtensions Explained

BY Tifani Esco

PUBLISHED ON Jun, 14, 2024

What’s the difference and which one should you be doing?

This movement could fix your low back pain, and you can do it right from home. (With the right equipment) 

The back extension is an effective movement to strengthen your low back. It transfers to all major lifts and even every day life.

In this guide, we'll talk about why the back extension is so important. We'll also give you tips on how to do it correctly so that you get the most out of the movement.

Performing the 45° Back Extension at Home

Proper Form on a Back Extension Machine:

Proper form is crucial for maximizing benefits and decreasing the risk of injury.

Here's a step-by-step guide on how to perform the 45° back extension at home with a back extension machine:

  1. Adjust the Machine: Set it up according to your height. The back extension pads should sit just below your hip. As shown below.

     2.  Position Yourself: Make sure you are comfortable.

To Start The Movement: 

     1. Arm Position: If you are dealing with low back pain, use handles for assistance.

     2. To Start the Movement: Hinge at the hips until you feel a stretch in your low back/hamstrings.

     3.Slow and Controlled Extension: Flex your quads. Use your lower back muscles to lift your upper body.

     4. Squeeze Glutes and Hamstrings: Try not to overextend.

     5. Repetition: Start with a moderate number of reps. Increase gradually as your strength improves. 

     6. Pain Free Movement: Always make sure to work at your pain free ability level.

Progressions for the Hyperextension Machine:

Finding your pain free ability level means choosing the progression that is right for you.

Here are some regressions/progressions to consider:

  1. For Beginners:

    • Range of Motion: Focus on the full range before adding load.

    • Use handles: for added assistance. This lets you focus on proper form.

Advanced Variations

Add Resistance: Hold weights or attach resistance bands to the machine. 

Single-Leg Back Extension: Lift one leg off the footplate to increase demand on the lower back and glutes.

Other Variations

More Glutes- Round your upper back for the whole movement.

More Hamstrings/Low Back- Keep your back extended.

Benefits of Training the 45° Back Extension

Performing back hyperextensions offers numerous benefits:

  • Lower Back Strengthening: It enhances lower back stability which results in better posture. Strengthening the low back reduces the risk of pain and injuries.
  • Glute Activation: It improves overall glute strength.
  • Strengthens hamstrings
  • Core Activation: Engages core muscles, crucial for overall stability and balance.
  • Sports Performance Enhancement: Targets muscles used in sport, enhancing overall performance.
  • Longevity: A strong back means more pain free movement for years to come.


90 Degree VS 45 Degree- What’s the difference?

     45 Degree                 VS                90 Degree 


This variation involves bending at a 90-degree angle instead of a 45 degree angle.

The 90 degree variation will have more focus on the glutes and lower back over the hamstrings.

It is beneficial for rebuilding strength after a lower back injury or overcoming years of low back pain.

If you are looking to maximize glute hypertrophy and strengthen the low back, then the 90 degree back extension is for you!

If you are looking to open up the hamstrings while strengthening the lower & mid back then the 45 degree back extension is for you!



Similar to the 45-degree version, adjusting your form can target different parts of your back and legs.

  • Straight Back: To focus on the low back
  • Rounded Back: To focus on the glutes
  • Sorenson Hold: To increase strength in the hardest part of the movement, try holding the top position for as long as you can.

Both 90 and 45-degree back extensions contribute significantly to overall strength. Consider your specific goals when deciding which is best for you.

Experience the Nordic Hyper GHD from Freak Athlete

For those eager to perform back extensions at home with the most versatile home gym machine on the market, the Nordic Hyper GHD from Freak Athlete is the solution.

Offering six machines in one, it scales your training with multiple movements and progressions.

Not only can you do back extensions, the Nordic Hyper GHD also functions as:

  • A full sized Nordic Bench: With 10+ levels of regressions
  • GHD Reverse Hyper
  • Hip Thrust Bench
  • Decline Sit-up Bench

Ready to start building your home gym? Click here to shop the Nordic Hyper GHD- the one and only all in one machine for the lower body. 

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