What Is A Roman Chair Used For?

The use of a roman chair differs from person to person, which is why you may see some people lifting their torso upwards, facing down, or bending at a certain angle. Whether you need to strengthen a particular body part or tone your muscles, it’s good to know what is a roman chair used for and how it can create a unique body workout.

What Is A Roman Chair Used For? 

The main purpose of a roman chair is to work your entire core area, most often to hyperextend and strengthen your lower back. This powerhouse apparatus is also a great way to tone glutes, strengthen hamstring, and build abs in one go. 

Furthermore, a roman chair targets underdeveloped muscles, which is advantageous for anybody who does any kind of physical activity or sport. In the same way, a roman chair helps people who suffer from back and posture problems get fitter and healthier. 

The Anatomy of a Roman Chair

A roman chair has two pads with varying sizes at different heights. The larger pad supports the back or hip while the smaller one lets you hook your legs when exercising. 

It usually features heavy-duty steel construction, high-density foam cushions, padded handles, sturdy footing, and powder-coated finish to make workouts as comfortable as possible.  

Woman wearing a mask doing exercises outdoors while using a Roman Chair

Some roman chairs have a degree of adjustability where you can tweak the angles to modify the difficulty and intensity of exercises. 

Why Is It Called a Roman Chair?

The United States All-Around Weightlifting Association credits gym owner and personal trainer Louis Attila to be the inventor of the roman chair after seeing a Roman lifter perform exercises in a somehow similar device.   

While the medieval roman chair was an actual chair of torture for people in Europe up until the late 1800s, today’s roman chair has taken a new role by becoming a workout bench to improve physique and create a healthier lifestyle.   

The Benefits of Using a Roman Chair

A Roman chair is a versatile piece of workout equipment that helps strengthen several body parts. Here are the reasons why using a roman chair can help achieve your fitness goals: 

Reduces Back Pain

If your work routine is hurting your back, use a roman chair for hyperextension exercise to get rid of back pain. This basic exercise reinforces the lower back and abs, resulting in less weight set on your spine.

When strengthening the backbone, you’ll need to position your body so that the hips lie directly on top of the upper pad. With your back parallel to the floor, moving slowly to bend at the hips and lower the trunk toward the floor helps build endurance in the lumbar spine’s muscles.

Improves Posture

Another reason to use a roman chair is to reduce tension in the lower back and core area, resulting in strengthened back muscles and better upright posture. 

If you have a job that requires you to sit 90% of the time, your back muscles weaken and cause spine issues over time. You can alleviate most of the problems concerning bad posture when you use a roman chair and perform back extension exercises. 

Shapes the Glutes and Hamstrings

Developing the glutes and hamstrings help prevent back pain and injuries. If you want to add volume for bodybuilding purposes, you’ll need to strengthen the glutes and hamstrings using a roman chair.

Whenever you place the hips forward of the pad, they will flex and extend as you move, activating the hamstrings and glutes along with the lower back. You should feel the glutes contracting when raising and lowering your torso.

Sculpts Abs

Due to the varying heights of the pads, you’ll need to hook the tops of your feet under the lower pad to raise or lower the torso. This movement lets your abdominal muscles act as stabilizers, thereby strengthening them in the process. 

For example, whenever you do sit-ups or twists on a roman chair, you will target the abdominal wall’s rectus abdominis muscles that work the upper and lower abs. 

Trains the Entire Body

When using a roman chair, your whole body makes an effort to move. While the body’s lower part anchors you to the chair, the upper portion moves the body. 

Even if a roman chair mainly targets the lower back, core, glutes, and hamstrings, it also works on the upper back, arms, neck, shoulders, and deltoids. The positive side effect of a toned body is gaining increased physical performance and ability. 

Accommodates Various Physical Needs 

Some roman chairs have multiple back extensions, making them adjustable depending on a person’s fitness level and needs. Even if you only have one at home, you can adjust it so that all individuals, regardless of their size, can exercise.   

Final Words

A Roman chair is a glorious sculpting tool that allows you to safely perform strength-conditioning exercises in the comfort of your home gym. Whether you want to tone your muscles, strengthen the spinal cord, or improve posture, a roman chair will deliver exceptional results.

Robert Lemus has been a natural competitor for 6 years, starting in Men’s Physique, then Bodybuilding, and then into Classic Physique. He is the Orange County Bodybuilding champion in 2016 for the Musclemania Organization. In 2018, he received his Pro Card with the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) in Classic Physique.