Return to Homepage

Dumbbell Rows

Dumbbell rows -- exercise to strengthen the upper back, biceps and shoulders

Dumbbell rows are an excellent exercise to strengthen the upper back and biceps. Since you do each side separately you get independent development of each arm and each side of your back.

Developing each side independently is important if you have one side that is much stronger than the other. It will help you stay in balance.

Start with one hand supported on a bench and the other arm holding the dumbbell

Dumbbell rows -- starting position

Dumbbell rows -- starting position

You should have your feet a little wider than shoulder width. The knees should be slightly bent. This will give you a very stable stance for the exercise.

Bend forward but keep the back straight. Stabilize yourself with one hand on a bench. Grip the dumbbell firmly in the other hand.

Bring the weight up until your upper arm is parallel with the side of your chest

Dumbbell rows -- second position

Dumbbell rows -- second position

Your upper arm should be parallel to your chest. Your elbow will be at about 90 degrees.

You'll feel the contraction in the lats along the side of the back and in your biceps muscle at the front of the arm.

Lowering the weight -- "eccentric" movements

Lowering the weight is the "eccentric" phase of lifting. Eccentric in this case means exercising a muscle while it is lengthening.

Don't just let the weight drop. A lot of the benefit of the exercise is gained during the eccentric phase.

Make sure that you lower the weight with good control. Feel the muscles working as you lower the weight.


This exercise can be done with a barbell as well. The barbell row is a more advanced exercise. In that exercise you don't have the advantage of a free hand on a bench for balance and support. There is also an increased risk of straining the lower back.

Where to start:

There is a lot of information on this site. The links below will get you off to a good start.

Most popular pages:

These are some of our most popular pages. They are also some of the most helpful if you are finally ready to lose weight.

You can always reach us:

  • 28960 US Highway 19 North, Suite 115
  • Clearwater, FL 33761
  • (727) 771-8282

  • Or to use our contact form click here.

top of the page