How To Do Underhand Bent Over Rows

YouTube Exercise Video

How To Do Underhand Bent Over Rows

We’ve touched before on how difficult the middle back can be to safely target with your work out. It’s not an easy group to directly work, and it can be dangerous if you overdo it. It’s especially problematic for people with existing back problems for which there are previous few work arounds. 

The exercise we’re going to cover here involves a barbell, and is absolutely not something for beginners due to the posture and motion involved. It’s also not for someone with moderate to severe back troubles, though those with mild back troubles may find it helps strengthen trouble areas. 

The reverse grip bent over row has a long name, but the exercise itself is pretty basic. It works the middle and part of the upper back, with secondary benefits to your laterals, biceps and forearms. 

What You Need 

You need two things – a reasonably-weighted barbell, and a spotter. When you’re hoisting this kind of weight, with risky postures, you should always have someone on hand in case you injure yourself or find yourself in a situation you can’t easily get out of. 

Underhand Bent Over Row Muscles Worked

Latissimus dorsi muscle animation


  • Grip the barbell, palms facing outward/upward, about shoulder length apart. 
  • Bend at the waist at about a 45-degree angle. 
  • Your starting position will be with the bar at your knees, arms mostly straight. 
  • Bending at the elbows, lift the barbell to waist height. Your elbows will flare slightly outward. 
  • Gently lower it back down under your own power, never gravity. 


If you have severe back or joint problems, do not try this exercise. If you have mild to moderate problems, consult a physician first. Always, always have someone nearby when working with barbells, as it’s so very easy to injure yourself with this equipment. 
Don’t overdo the weigh, know your limits and pace yourself. 

To learn more about exercises like this and how to do them safely, subscribe to our YouTube channel today.

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