The upright rowing is a common strength training exercise . Popular with bodybuilders, athletes, and sportsmen alike, the upright rowing is generally performed with the goal of increasing the size of the back and shoulder.
Women often steer clear of this exercise as it tends to increase neck girth as well, while soccer and rugby players do it for the same reason.
Execution Of The Vertical Or Chin Row
The upright row (also called the chin row) is a free weight exercise commonly performed with a barbell. Grab a barbell with a wide grip.
Stand with your feet wide at the hips and the weight resting on your thighs. Pull your shoulders back, lift your chest, and arch your lower back slightly.
Lead with your elbows and pull the bar across the front of your body and just below your chin. The elbows should be higher than the hands.
Slowly lower the bar down to full arm extension and repeat.
Don’t use your knees, hips, or back to pull the weight , as this reduces the effectiveness and technique of the exercise.
Muscles Involved In Upright Rowing
The upright rowing is a compound exercise. The compound exercises use multiple joint actions and, therefore multiple muscle groups.
The primary muscles involved in the upright rowing are the upper trapezius, deltoids, and biceps.
The upper trapezius and delts work together to raise your shoulder girdle and lift your arms, while your biceps work to flex your elbows. In addition to the main muscles, the smaller muscles called synergists and fixators control other parts of your body to facilitate the performance of this exercise.
The muscles in your core , for example, must generate tension to hold your spine as you lift and lower the weight.
Variations Of The Upright Row
This exercise is most commonly performed using a barbell for resistance but you can also use weights or a cable machine from below for variety.
Some prefer to perform the exercise with a shoulder width grip rather than the traditional wide hand grip. Another variation is the high pull row , which uses a strategic leg push to allow you to lift heavier weights.
This is a common exercise in weightlifting and is also popular with athletes.
Considerations Before Starting The Exercise
The upright rowing involves considerable medial or internal rotation of the shoulder. This action creates significant torque within the shoulder joints .
This in turn, places a potentially damaging load on the small muscles that control the stability of the shoulder joint, specifically the rotator cuff.
Some fitnasts and athletes find that upright rowing places their shoulders in a mechanically disadvantageous position that can result in shoulder pain.
If you find this happening to you and it is detrimental to your shoulders, perform shrugs for your trapezius muscles instead.