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If you want to strengthen your lower back and spine muscles at home, the best equipment is a Roman chair or a hyperextension bench.
But, if you have checked this equipment, you saw there are two “versions,” the 90 or the 45-degree ones. The 90-degree version lets you do the back extension in a horizontal position. And the 45-degree equipment, you are almost standing.
Which is more efficient and comfortable? Which is more suitable for you?
Here I’m going to list the pros and cons of both, so you will know which is the best buy for you.
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The 90-Degree Roman Chairs
Typically, this type is recommended for intermediate-advanced trainees because it requires existing strength to perform the motion correctly.
Full range of motion
This equipment allows moving as far as anatomically possible during the back extension. Since you are in a horizontal state, you can go deep. This way the range of motion is full. That leads to better strength development, joint stability, and muscle balance.
Additional sections for strength training
In most of the cases, these units come with bars allowing you to do dips. That is a very powerful bodyweight upper body exercise. Particularly beneficial for your triceps, chest, and shoulders.
Also, you can do Roman chair sit-ups, crunches, twists or side bends to strengthen all your abdominal muscles.
90-degree equipment is not foldable and requires space to store and use. Hence, if you are lack of place, it is better to get a 45-degree version.
A bit more challenging to mount yourself
You need to “climb” up to the top of the chair and set yourself to the proper position. That is a bit complicated if you want to use additional weight for your workout for example dumbbells.
45-degree Hyperextension benches
This version is recommended for beginner-intermediate level trainees since it is easier to do the back extension.
Easy to get into
You can quickly get into the starting position even if you want to use extra resistance, for example, a barbell.
In most of the cases, these benches are foldable and have a compact design. So, they are suitable for people having smaller space to work out.
Usually combined with sit up bench
These exercise equipment are typically combo machines meaning they come with a hyperextension and sit up section. This way you get two equipment at once allowing you to do more types of exercises.
Partial range of motion
Obviously, you cannot go do deep, so the range of motion is shorter. But, that does not mean this shortened movement does not strengthen the muscles.
Features that are common
Both versions are adjustable so you can set them to your height to perform the move safely and comfortably.
Most of the products for home support about 250-300 lbs maximum load which is enough for most of the people.
Although, gym quality equipment can handle over 500 lbs. That capacity is enough for serious trainees. Also, these items provide an excellent training experience, but more expensive.
Which is better for you?
Well, if you are at a better fitness level and have space at home, get a 90-degree Roman chair. Otherwise, a 45-degree hyperextension bench will do.