Tip: Master the Low Cable Row

Build your back and keep your cranky shoulders healthy with this smart row variation. Take a look.

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The low cable row is one of the best exercises for building muscle and strength while training around chronically cranky shoulders. Due to the slightly declined angle of pull and the use of a close grip and neutral hand position at the bar, the shoulder joint is more naturally placed in a centrated position, decreasing unwanted joint and non-contractile tissue stressors.

While there's no inherently problem with the low cable row using the traditional V-bar, a quick and easy way to add some novelty to this exercise while targeting the back is by using two handles on the cable setup.

Pronating Low Cable Row with Dual Handles

The use of two handles on the cable setup allows both upper extremities and shoulders to improve their positioning during the pull. It also enhances the synergistic spiral effect at the shoulder joint, increasing stability and recruitment of postural stabilizers in the posterior shoulder girdle.

The natural rotation of the arms during the low cable row using the dual handle setup is literally the best of both worlds. During the concentric pulling action, your hands will rotate slightly into a more neutral position with palms facing one another. That will enhance the position of the shoulder.

The eccentric stretching portion of the exercise will rotate the hands into a palms down position, allowing the shoulder blades to protract slightly and place a targeted stretch through the lats and upper back musculature, which are common spots for functional tightness.

Execution and Placement

Be sure to do these smoothly with a pumping action that emphasizes a big flex on the back side of the movement while really slowing down the eccentric stretch to achieve a full range of motion.

Work these into your back day during your first primer movement or as a metabolic stress based finisher and reap the benefits of strength and hypertrophy gains without crushing your shoulders to pieces.