How To Do The Seated V-Grip Cable Rows: The Complete Guide

The Seated V-Grip Cable Rows is a go-to exercise of many trainees looking to build upper back strength and hypertrophy. The seated cable row targets primarily target the back muscles such as the latissimus dorsi (middle back), the rhomboids (between shoulder blades), and the trapezius (neck, shoulders, and upper back) while providing secondary emphasis to the forearm muscles and biceps brachii. This exercise will tone and strengthen your upper body, which is essential for everyday movements, including pulling. Having a strong upper body also improves posture, protects your shoulders, and reduces your risk of injury.

How To Do The Seated V-Grip Cable Rows: The Complete Guide Image

Learning The Seated V-Grip Cable Row

  1. Sit on the bench with your back straight and firmly plant your feet on the floor or the foot-rest provided in the cable machine.
  2. Position yourself with your knees slightly bent and so that you have to reach to grab the handle with outstretched arms yet without curling the lower back over. Brace the abdominals and you’re ready to row.
  3. Pull the handle towards your abdomen while maintaining the starting position (neutral spine, feet firmly planted). 
  4. What you have to keep in mind while pulling the handle towards your abdomen is that you should not pull them with the help of your biceps but you should feel it in the upper back. Make sure that you are not flaring your elbows outwards and not using momentum by moving your torso forward and backwards. 
  5. Target the middle to upper back by keeping your back straight and squeezing your shoulder blades together as you row, chest out.
  6. Breathe in as your let go of the handle and exhale when you pull the weight backwards.

Tips & Mistakes To Avoid

  1. Rounded Back – Your back should be straight at all times, not bent. You can flex slightly at the hip to allow a full range of motion.
  2. Moving Torso – Use your arms for the motion rather than moving your torso. Keep your torso still throughout the exercise.
  3. Too Fast on Return – Return the weight under tension to the starting position. Don’t crash the weights and don’t pause or bounce at the bottom of the lift.
  4. Outward elbows – Keep your elbows against your body during the pulling phase (except during the wide-grip row). Avoid lifting your elbows up and out, which engages the biceps instead of the lats and rhomboids.
  5. Shrugged shoulders – When you pull the weight, keep your shoulders back and down. Shrugging your shoulders toward your ears will place too much focus on the traps
  6. Locked Knees – Locking your knees can be stressfull on the joints, it is advised to keep it slightly bent.
  7. Range of Motion – Performing the exercise completely is the most important thing to reap the full benefits, while you can lift more weights with half reps, it’s not fruitful to do so.

This is everything that you need to know the next time you are going to perform the Seated V-Grip Cable Rows. Always make safety a priority before performing the exercises in the gym and always warm up before lifting weights.


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