Previously, I discussed the benefits of barbell rows. Today, I will be discussing the benefits of dumbbell rows. Both are very similar exercises, however, they have unique benefits to them!
Within this article, I will be providing three of the primary benefits of this exercise. So… enough talking, let’s get to the information!
Benefit #1 – Greater Range of Motion:
The dumbbell row provides a greater active range of motion compared to the barbell row. Why might this be? Our elbows are not forced to stop when the bar meets or chest. Since we are using dumbbells, our elbows have the freedom to travel behind our back and into greater extension.
This provides a greater range of motion, which in this case, produces a stronger contraction of the muscles within our back. The stronger contraction creates more training stimulus by making the muscle work harder and it also has the potential for a greater mind-muscle connection which can be beneficial for muscle growth!
Benefit #2 – Unilateral in Nature:
Any exercise that is unilateral in nature has the benefit of being able to isolate one side of our body from the other. In this instance, we are working one arm at a time, rather than both simultaneously if they were attached to a fixed object, like a barbell.
This allows us to easily work on any muscle imbalances we have as we can emphasize one side over the other. If our left arm is weaker than our right during pulling exercises, there are a few tactics that we can implement.
These include training the left side with more volume or performing the sets for our left arm prior to our right arm. Or, if training volume is an issue, we can reduce the volume of our right arm. Typically, I would suggest sticking to the first two options if possible.
Benefit #3: Highly Versatile:
Seeing as the back is such a large and complex muscle group, there are many options we have when training it. The dumbbell row is a specific example that can gain a lot of benefits from different variations.
First of all, this exercise is great for training heavy or light. The compound exercise aspect is great for heavy training, but the unilateral nature makes it great for lighter training as well since we are typically weaker for this style of exercise. It’s great for pause reps at peak-contraction to help engage the muscle to a greater degree for a stronger mind-muscle connection.
Additionally, the dumbbells allow you to change and manipulate how the exercise is performed as far as the movement path of the dumbbells and their orientation. An example of this would be pulling them towards your upper/mid-back for more rhomboid and trap focus or supinating your wrists and pulling them close to your sides for a lat focus.
I have seen reps with the style of “3-point pauses” being used a lot lately where you pause at peak contraction, in the middle of the eccentric and the bottom portion. The primary benefit of this would be to help grow the mind-muscle connection of our back.
Well folks, that’s the article! Short and sweet with the information you need to understand some of the primary benefits of the dumbbell row. This information also serves as a beneficial contrast to the benefits of the barbell row!
Got any questions? Be sure to leave them in the comment section below where I will be sure to respond! Thanks for your time everyone and enjoy the remainder of your day!
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Until Next Time,
Please refer to my liability disclaimer to ensure you know who is responsible for use of this information after reading.