Barbell bent over row is one of the best back exercises to help increase strength and size in your back. Due to your position, the exercise will also help strengthen core and ab muscles too!

Barbell bent over rowThe main aim of the Barbell bent over row is to keep your shoulders down and your elbows close to your body. This makes sure you are not using other muscles to take over the pulling action.

As I mentioned above, you will also use your core and abs, by holding a strong bent over position throughout the whole exercise.

You should keep your belly button pulled back to engage your underlying core muscles and brace your abs to hold yourself in position.

Take a look at our video tutorial below where I guide you through the exercise and outline the main technique points of how to do a perfect barbell bent over row.

If you need something to print off and take to the gym as a reminder, the step-by-step exercise technique is further down this page.

How To Do A Barbell Bent Over Row – Step-by-Step Technique

    • Step 1: Stand in front of the barbell, in a strong athletic stance, making sure your feet are just past shoulder width apart, your back is in neutral alignment and your core is tight.
    • Step 2: Bending your knees, and keeping your back straight, lower down to pick up the bar and set your grip. You can choose from an ‘hooked' grip, or a ‘wrapped’ grip.
    • Step 3: Lift the bar by performing a deadlift move, keeping your back straight and driving through your knees.
    • Step 4: Bend yourself forward by hinging at the waist and pushing your butt back, so you reach just lower than 45 degrees with your body. Your arms will hang down with the weight just lower than your knee.
    • Step 5: Breathing out, pull the bar into your belly button, making sure you keep your shoulders down and your elbows close to your side. Squeeze your back throughout.
    • Step 6: Breathing in, lower the bar back to the start point, maintaining neutral spine and a tight core throughout.
    • Step 7: Complete the prescribed number of reps, then using the deadlift motion, lower the weight back to the floor.

** Pro Tip: We recommend starting 3 sets of 15-20 reps.**

To learn more exercises that you can use in your training, visit our complete exercise library on the Fit Father Project YouTube channel.


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* We hoped you enjoyed this article. Remember to always consult your doctor before starting any new exercise program and that this is not medical advice – just well researched info. Please see our disclaimer at the bottom of this website. Exercise intelligently and safely at your own risk.