Dumbbell Row
For Back Strength



Use the dumbbell row and its variations to strengthen the muscles of your back. Find out how to use the best technique and avoid injury with these videos and instructions.

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Bentover rows work many muscles of your back, shoulders and arms. Variations are with barbells or dumbbells, free standing or leaning on a bench, bentover at 45 degrees or 90 degrees. They're all good workouts.

The best way to build strength evenly, is to use dumbbells. That's why the dumbbell row is a must in any workout plan.

When it comes to strength training, whether you're toning or building bulk, you should always have balance in your thoughts.

Balance in this sense means working all areas of your body - front, back and sides. The obvious example is doing an equal amount of chest exercises and back exercises.

The good thing about dumbbells is that they allow you to also work your left and right sides equally. With a barbell, your stronger side may compensate for the weaker side and the imbalance could get worse.

Note: If you have any sort of back injury or back pain, see your health professional before doing any strength exercises.
Click here to see more about back pain and other back exercises.

Your back has a large amount of muscle mass. Doing the dumbbell row will help tone those large muscles, which in turn will raise your metabolism and lead to faster fat burning.

Combine this with fat burning exercises, and your body will soon be melting fat for fun.

Lots of benefits from such a simple exercise, great! But you still have to remember good technique, especially when working your back.

The quality of your movement is so much more important than the quantity of the weights. You'll build strength quicker and avoid injury with slow, controlled movements.

Standing Dumbbell Row

Here is the standing bentover dumbbell row. Not sure about your reps and sets? Click here.

  • Holding the dumbbells with your palms facing in, stand with your feet hip width apart and knees slightly bent.
  • Bend forward from your hips, to a 45-90 degree angle. Keep your back straight and brace your core, let your arms hang straight down with a slight bend in your elbows.
  • Row both dumbbells up by bending at your elbows. Keep going until your elbows are level with your back.
  • Then slowly lower them down to the starting point.
  • Repeat until you've completed your reps and sets.

Tips:

  1. Keep your legs and body still throughout. If you have to rock your body or use momentum then the weight's too heavy.
  2. Don't let your shoulders shrug up. Keep them down and back!
  3. Remember to breathe - exhale when lifting up, and inhale when recovering back down.
  4. Control the lift on the way up and down, don't let gravity bring it down.
  5. For even more control, try lifting the dumbbells 1 arm at-a-time. Rest your non-lifting arm on your thigh.
  6. You can vary this exercise by holding the dumbbells with your palms facing ahead or backwards.

Exercise Pictures

Dumbbell Row On Bench

Here is a variation of the bentover dumbbell row, using a bench.

  • Place the dumbbell to the right of the bench.
  • Place your left knee on the bench, keep your right foot on the floor beside the bench with knee slightly bent.
  • Bend forward from your hips, keeping your back straight and parallel to the floor. Rest your left hand at the top of the bench.
  • Pick the dumbbell up in your right hand, palm facing in.
  • Row the dumbbell up by bending at your elbow. Keep going until your elbow is level with (or just beyond) your back.
  • Then slowly lower it down.
  • Repeat until you've completed your reps.
  • Repeat on the opposite side.

Tips:

  1. Keep your legs and body still throughout. If you have to rock your body or use momentum then the weight's too heavy. Slow, steady lifts with good technique will produce faster results and keep you injury free.
  2. Don't let your shoulders shrug up. Keep them down and back!
  3. Remember to breathe - exhale when lifting up, and inhale when recovering back down.
  4. Control the lift on the way up and down, don't let gravity bring it down.

Dumbbell Row Videos

Enjoy these dumbbell exercises! Want a visual idea of the best technique? Check out these great videos:



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