How To Do Kettlebell Bent Over Row Properly

If you’re looking to strengthen your back and core muscles then Kettlebell bent over row is an ideal drill for you.

The kettlebell bent-over row is an essential drill that strengthens the back muscles and improves your core strength.

It is preferable to use kettlebells to perform this exercise because gravity will challenge your grip due to the design of a kettlebell.

Also known as Two kettlebell row.

Targeted muscles: Upper back, arms.

Requirements: Kettlebells.

Level: Beginner

Steps:

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and grip a kettlebell in each hand.
  • Slowly bend forward until your upper body is parallel with the ground.
  • Start the motion by moving your elbows behind your body while drawing in your shoulder blades.
  • Pull back the kettlebells close to your body such that your elbows are slightly past the midline.
  • Lower the kettlebells gently to resume the starting position.
  • Repeat the process until you attain the desired number of reps.

Tips:

If you wish, you can start the drill with the kettlebells in a set position on the ground and row them. Using this static position will challenge the drill a little because of the lack of motion but significantly improve your speed. Ensure you control the motion throughout the drill. The momentum should not dictate how you move the kettlebells.

MUSCLES WORKED BY KETTLEBELL BENT-OVER ROW

Kettlebell bent over row works the upper back and the lats most. This exercise also works the biceps, shoulders, lower back, triceps, and deltoids to a lesser degree. These muscles are more involved in the lift and pull motion.

BENEFITS OF KETTLEBELL BENT OVER ROW

PREVENTS INJURIES

Usually, the kettlebell bent over the row incorporates midline balance through the lift. It does not strain the shoulders too much. The drill isolates the shoulders, back, and glutes. This makes it an ideal exercise for core strength and stability. Likewise, the drill will allow you to engage your back muscle fibers and in turn prevent you from probable training injuries. Kettlebell bent over row does not require much twisting on the shoulder. It is a great lift even if you’re training with an injury and cannot execute a full-range motion pull-up.

BUILT TORSO AND IMPROVED CORE STRENGTH

Kettlebell bent over row engages several muscles at once and will significantly improve your core strength.

This exercise specifically targets the muscles that will aid breaking through challenging phases to improve core strength for other exercises such as push-ups, pull-ups, and bench press.

Bent over rows also create a strong mind-muscle connection that engages the lats as you pull up.

MINIMIZING THE RISK OF CHRONIC DISEASE BY BURNING FAT

Performing the kettlebell bent over a row will significantly build your lean muscles and in turn, increase your basal metabolic rate.

The more calories you burn, the leaner body composition you get.

Lean body composition significantly lowers the heart rate and blood pressure and therefore a lower probability of chronic disease. General fitness and exercise advantages reach great lengths!

ALTERNATIVES TO KETTLEBELL BENT OVER ROW

RING ROWS

Ring rows, also known as body rows, are an ideal and easy ring drill for beginners. It is great for building up strength if you are looking to perform unaided pull-ups.

Like a kettlebell bent over a row, this exercise targets the torso and the biceps.

Level: Beginner

Steps:

  • Set the rings at a height that is appropriate for you. Remember the lower you set the rings, the more challenging the drill gets.
  • Hold the rings and lean on your back as far as possible such that your arms are straight.
  • Maintain your body posture and pull up your chest close to the rings. Go as high as you can.
  • Maintain the position temporarily at the top before you lower yourself back down to resume the starting position.
  • Repeat until you get the desired reps.

You can lower the rings to make the drill a little challenging.

Ring rows are a handy starter if you have not mastered pull-ups yet.

MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN DOING THE KETTLEBELL BENT OVER ROW

GOING TOO HEAVY

If you are consistent with exercise, you will gain the utmost benefits. This is the idea behind progressive overload. You may be tempted to cheat your way up in attempt to gain significant results in a short time. If you cheat in the motion range or use energy to swing the kettlebells, you fail to achieve the main goal of the drill.

Ensure you lift weights that you feel comfortable lifting and ensure you keep a good portion of that stimulus.

NOT USING THE FULL MOTION RANGE

The biggest driver of muscle growth is using the full motion range when performing the drill. The problem with using a slow-motion range is that you aren’t progressing.

Normalizing the motion range prevents you from adding more reps and gives you unnecessary fatigue. Ensure you extend your elbows fully at the bottom.

If you don’t do a full-motion, consider the set impractical.

When you increase the weight of the kettlebells gradually, you realize you’re building your muscles and gradually increasing your core strength, and not compromising the drill.

POOR BODY ANGLING

This is the biggest mistake most beginners tend to make. Angles, levers, and momentum all play a huge role in weightlifting.

When you change the angle of a drill, you change the point of focus. (The muscles worked). When the angle of your torso is high, so is the point of focus.

Since you want to engage your mid-back, going upright is not the correct way to do it. Make sure you lower your body such that your torso is aligned to the floor.

This way, the focus will be on your mid-back, right where it is supposed to be.

CONCLUSION

The kettlebell bent-over row is an effective drill for an optimized back, strong shoulders, abs, and back muscles.

It is easy to perform and has many alternatives that you can choose from if you’re not comfortable with the movements.

You can do so much with the kettlebells and one way you can is by trying this exercise. You will get a full-body workout and get the best results from kettlebell bent over row with constant practice.

Best of luck!