For strength and size, master one of the most effective unilateral back exercises.
One of the most popular exercises is the single-arm dumbbell rows. It is very simple to perform — simply kneel on a bench to row your side and a dumbbell to load it. This exercise is also unilateral, meaning that it only trains one side of your body. Because you are effectively doubling your work load, single-arm movements can help balance muscular imbalances and reduce calories.
Your upper back and lats will grow, but your core and lower back will stabilize your torso. They are a powerful tool for mass building and can be used by bodybuilders such as Arnold Schwarzenegger or powerlifters such as Janae Kroczaleski. This article will cover everything you need to know regarding the dumbbell row.
How to do the Dumbbell Row
Although the dumbbell row won’t allow you to lift the most weight, it will let you isolate certain muscles. Here’s how it works.
Step 1 — Grab the back and set it.
Place a dumbbell on either side of the rowing bench. Stand perpendicularly to it. Your non-rowing hand should be on the bench. Place your other foot on the ground. Tend your back to make it flat. Grab a dumbbell with your free hand and reach down. Now, you can reset your spine so that your back is straight again.
For more full-body tension, drive your non-rowing hand into a bench.
Step 2 – Initiate the Row
You should not lift the weight on your shoulder. You should keep your shoulders relaxed. Your shoulders should be relaxed. As if you were starting a lawnmower. The dumbbell should reach your hips and your elbow should extend past your torso.
Tip: These should be done correctly. You should feel a lot more tension in your lats on your side.
Step 3 — Reduce the weight
To increase muscle engagement, contract your back muscles maximally once you reach the top position. Repeat this for each repetition. After you feel the back contracting, lower the load with the same arching motion as when it was lifted.
Form Tip: Do not loose tension in your back muscles when you lose weight
The Dumbbell Row has many benefits
These are the three benefits of adding the dumbbell rows to your training program.
Stronger back and grip
For athletes, lifters, and all fitness enthusiasts, the dumbbell row is an important back-building exercise. To increase back strength and muscle hypertrophy you can do dumbbell row. Additionally, higher volumes of training will provide additional benefits such as increased grip and biceps growth.
Because it works many muscles that retract the shoulder blades, the dumbbell row can improve back strength and posture. To strengthen and improve posture, people who sit down, slouch, or round their back during deadlift sets can incorporate dumbbell rows.
The dumbbell row targets the arms, back, grip, and shoulders. These muscle groups assist in movements such as deadlifts, squats and bench pressing. They also maintain positional strength for Olympic lifts. Higher lifts can be achieved by strengthening the back muscles.
Muscles Worked By the Dumbbell Row
When performed correctly, the dumbbell row can be a back exercise that emphasizes large amounts of muscle tissue. Below is a list of primary and secondary muscles that are used when performing dumbbell row.
Your back’s largest triangular muscle, the lats, is a large triangle-shaped muscle. Strong backs are essential for lifting weights and being upright.
As you are hinged and arched throughout the movement, the spinal erectors (aka the lower back) help stabilize the spine during dumbbell rows. The row variation can also challenge the erectors unilaterally.
To prevent your shoulders from moving, single-arm dumbbell rows require your shoulder blades (aka scapula) to be squeezed together. The smaller stabilizer muscles in the scapula are strengthened because they are contracted throughout the exercise. It’s important to target this area because strong, stable scaps are essential for any pulling exercise.
Forearms and Biceps
The arm muscles, or the arm, grip the dumbbell to assist in pulling (elbowflexion). A proper row does not require the use of the biceps, but the lats. High rep rows are a good way to increase arm strength and muscle growth.
Who should do the dumbbell row?
Here are some reasons dumbbell rows can be beneficial for strength, power and fitness.
Strength and power athletes
You can use your improved back strength and mass to pull, squat, carry, and press.
* Powerlifters and Strongmen/Strongwomen: Movements like deadlifts, squats, and carries are dependent on strong back and grip muscles. Doing dumbbell rows or other accessories can increase your lean body mass, improve your posture, and help you build strength.
* Olympic Weightlifters. Olympic weightlifters use their back muscles to maintain strength in the clean and jerk, squat and snatch movements. These movements are key to weightlifter’s overall development. However, dumbbell rows can also be used to train your grip strength, lean muscle mass, and back development.
Dumbbell rows can be beneficial for competitive CrossFit and fitness competitors as they improve unilateral back strength, posture, and increase upper body hypertrophy. Dumbbell rows can be used by lifters who have difficulty pulling pull-ups and deadlifts.
You can reap the same benefits for any lifter, regardless of their level, by adding dumbbell rows to your workout.
Dumbbell Row Sets and Reps. Programming Recommendations
We have listed three methods to incorporate dumbbell rows into your workout, depending on what your goal is.
To Gain Muscle
Muscle building is all about increasing volume and gaining weight. You can do three to five sets of eight or twelve repetitions, each time with a heavy to moderate load. To manipulate your time under tension, you can also play with the speed of your lifting.
To gain strength
When you feel confident performing dumbbell row, you can increase the weight and gradually decrease the reps to concentrate on strength gains. Begin by doing four to six sets with four to eight repetitions and very challenging loads.
To Increase Muscle Endurance
You can do two to three sets of 20-30 reps with a moderate load if you want to strengthen your arm and back muscles. If you want to improve your grip, wear lifting straps.
Dumbbell Row Variations
Here are two dumbbell rows to increase strength, hypertrophy and pulling performance.
Dumbbell Renegade Row
A unilateral row in plank position called the renegade dumbbell rows. It strengthens core stability, scapular strength and overall coordination. This exercise can improve core strength and back muscles.
Incline Bench Dumbbell Row
To perform the incline bench dumbbell row, lie down on an inclined bench and face downwards. The bench allows you to reduce stress and/or muscular demands, and stabilize the body and load.
This position can help to reduce strain on the hips and back. This position can help maximize your back strength and development. It also minimizes fatigue from supporting yourself in a bent-over position.
Dumbbell Row Alternatives
Here are three dumbbell rows that can be used for improving back strength, muscle hypertrophy and posture.
Bent-Over Barbell Row
The Bent-Over Barbell Row is a common row movement that increases strength and size, and improves pulling performance. This row is performed with a barbell which allows for heavier loads to be lifted. This is a great way to increase your strength.
Row of Trap-Bar Seals
Seal row is a chest-supported row that targets the back muscles and minimizes the involvement of the hamstring, glutes and lower back. This movement is very close to isolation. The trap barensures a more secure grip that allows you to lift more weight.
The Meadows row is named after John Meadows, a pro-bodybuilder and coach. It uses a unique angle and hand placements to increase back strength and size. To promote muscle growth and damage, the increased range of motion allows lifters a better chance to squeeze and stretch their lats.
Do dumbbell rows are a beginner’s mistake?
People often perform rows where they allow their shoulders and chest to protrude into the hunch awards. This does not effectively hit the back muscles and reinforces a slouched position.
What’s the difference between a one-arm row and a two-arm?
Two-arm rows allow you to train your back faster by using less time. The one-arm row is more efficient because you can train with heavier loads and train closer to failure.
If your back muscles are not feeling the fatiguing when you row, it is possible to do one-arm rows with support. You can also do two-arm rows by performing the chest supported two arm row option.
Do dumbbell rows work best for building muscle?
Sets of 15-30 reps can be done with a moderate weight. You should not be able to do more than 30 reps at a time. To get the best results, perform 30 reps at a time, failing to do so with perfect reps. You can add weight, pauses, and slow-tempo reps if you are able to do more.