Exercise of the Day: Inverted Back Rows

When someone tells me they can do 100 push ups, I usually ask if they can also do 100 back rows using their bodyweight.  In other words, I’m not that impressed – sorry.

Push ups will work your chest, triceps, shoulders and core, but you will get injured if your body is out of balance.

Inverted back rows (also called supine rows or bodyweight rows) are the antagonist exercise that will target back, biceps, shoulders, and core muscles.

*Start by:

  1. Hanging from a bar with your hands positioned wider than your shoulders
  2. Legs straight with your hips lifted (you can perform exercise with knees bent to make it easier)
  3. Chest open
  4. Shoulder blades engaged
  5. Neck in a neutral position

 You body is in a straight line.



  1. Bend elbows, pulling yourself up to the bar
  2. Bar hits your chest, elbows bent at 90 degree angle
  3. Slowly lower back down, keeping abdominals pulled in
  4. Repeat motion to fatigue


Need it easier?  Have bar higher, so you are in more of an upright position or sit on a bench as you perform your rows (to shorten the load).

Need it more challenging? Position your feet on a bench or stability ball, or add a weight plate on your hips (you’ll need to have your feet higher so the plate doesn’t slide off).  You can even perform this exercise one-legged.

See exercise in motion here.

Try it and let me know how you do!

*Please see your physician before starting any new exercise program.


8 thoughts on “Exercise of the Day: Inverted Back Rows

  1. I love these. I have a jungle gym in my back yard that has hanging rings that I used to do this exercise. I also do this with the Smith machine at the gym (when I go). This would be a great compliment exercise to do with Coach Doug’s Plank/Push up routine he posted.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s