4 Keys To DB Rows

Kelsey Lensman, ATC


     Any type of row movement is very hard to perfect. It’s easy for your biceps, obliques, and other main movers to want to take over and to not really feel it in your back at all. However, here are a few keys that will help you engage your back musculature in your rows.


1. Keep your torso parallel to the ground: By keeping your torso parallel in the ground, you are not allowing the movement to be compensated by the obliques When the weight is very heavy, many times you’ll see individuals opening up with their torso to use the momentum to row the weight up. If this is the case, drop your ego and the weight! To better isolate your rhomboids, lats, and shoulder stabilizers you should keep your torso parallel to the ground and limit the amount of excess movement from anything other than those muscles.

2. Set your scapula first: When rowing it is imperative to focus on the mind-muscle connection between what you’re trying to activate and work. Your bicep, obliques, and other main movers are going to want to take over to lug that weight up if it gets too heavy. The first aspect you want to focus on is squeezing those shoulder blades together. This allows for activation of your rhomboids and scapular stabilizers, but also sets your scapula in the right position for the elbow drive.

3. Drive that elbow back past your hips: After simultaneously squeezing setting that scapula, you want to focus on driving that elbow past your hip. This will complete the row and engage lower lat/lower trap activation. Do not shrug your shoulders and try to drive your elbow to your upper back. This will cause for neck/upper trap pain. Keep that scapula set, drive back past your hips and activate that low trap, rhomboids, and lat. (Refer to picture)

4. Keep that core engaged: A huge low back saver will be focusing on keeping that core engaged throughout this entire movement. Do not let there be a huge dip in your low back. If this is the case, engage your tilting your pelvis forward and finding that pelvic neutral position. Keep that core engaged throughout the entire movement!

Try these tips the next time you do any row movement and let me know how it goes!


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