3 Inverted Row Alternatives You Can Do at Home

Although the inverted row is an effective exercise, there are numerous inverted row alternatives.

The inverted row is primarily an upper-body exercise centered around pulling movements that often work the back.

That said, it is low-impact despite being extremely effective. As such, it is within reason for someone with elite fitness levels to seek inverted row alternatives.

Some of the inverted row alternatives include:


The bent-over row is one of the more high-impact inverted row alternatives. The trick when it comes to this exercise is ensuring that you pick the right weights without losing form.

To do the exercise;

  • Hold onto a barbell with your palms facing down.
  • Bend your knees slightly and bend forward at the waist while keeping your back straight. It should be almost parallel with the floor.
  • The barbell should be directly in front of you; your arms should be perpendicular to the floor. This is the starting position
  • While keeping your torso stationary, lift the barbell toward you. Your elbows should be kept close to your body. Use only your forearms to hold the weight. When you get to the top, squeeze your back muscles and hold for a few seconds.
  • Slowly lower the barbell back to the starting position.
  • Repeat the process for the number of repetitions in your workout routine.


The pull up is one of the most recognized exercises globally in spite of the fact that it is extremely high impact.

It is an exercise that tests your upper body strength to its limits. To do the exercise:

  • Grab the bar with both hands roughly in line with your shoulders, or slightly wider, your palms facing away from you.
  • Hang from the bar with your arms fully extended. If your feet are touching the floor, bend your knees and pull your feet toward your bottom.
  • Pull yourself up until your chin is just above the bar.
  • Lower back down under control and repeat.
  • Reps: 8-10.


As one of the inverted row alternatives, the push press is a bit more of a full body workout as compared to other inverted row alternatives.

To do this exercise:

  • Stand with feet hip-distance apart. Place the barbell across your chest at shoulder height so that it rests at your collar bone. Hands should be placed on the bar slightly wider than shoulder-distance apart with palms facing forward.
  • Elbows are relaxed below and slightly in front of the bar. Legs should be straight but not locked.
  • Knees and ankles should be aligned directly beneath the hips. Keeping the bar at your chest and keeping the torso strong, bend the knees into a slight dip.
  • Then push through the feet and start to straighten the legs. This movement is done quickly to gain momentum.
  • Once you reach full hip extension, press the bar up. You’ll have to move the head slightly back to make room for the bar to pass.
  • Extend the arms fully overhead, keeping the torso properly aligned (it should not feel like the chest is extended forward or the hips are arching back).
  • Once the bar has moved up past your head, move it back through its original position and slightly forward.
  • Return the bar to the starting position to begin another repetition.



As one of the inverted row alternatives, the bent-over row is an exercise that engages all the muscles of the back.

The back is made up of four groups of muscles. The latissimus dorsi runs down the sides of the back, the rhomboids occupy the upper and mid back and the trapezius occupy most of the back starting the upper regions.

All these areas are touched on when you do the bent-over row.


The pull-ups are one of the more direct inverted row alternatives. Much like the inverted row, they improve your body’s general upper body strength.

The primary area that the pull-ups engage are the biceps. This is because pulling your full body weight up against the drag of gravity requires the involvement of the biceps

As such, constant repetitions of the same movements strengthens the bicep muscles as an adaptive measure.


A trend you’ll notice with all inverted row alternatives is that they are all full body workouts. The same applies to the push press which works a number of areas both upper and lower body.

The glutes are one of the major areas of engagement.


In order to effectively complete the necessary movements to complete the inverted row, the shoulders play a huge role.

Firstly, they stabilise your movements in conjunction with the forearms and elbows.

They also help with holding the weights in spite of the magnitude of the force of gravity acting on your arms



The universal nature of the inverted row alternatives forces the upper body to grow stronger in order to handle the strain it is put under.

In the long run this translates in day to day life i.e., it makes it easier to carry heavy loads


As mentioned above, the inverted row alternatives are full-body workouts. These kinds of exercises are important for anyone who works out.

A lot of times we have personal goals in regards to fitness revolving around different areas. However, the ultimate goal of fitness should be uniform conditioning.

This means that from top to bottom you are balanced with zero chinks in the armor in regards to weak points.

As a uniformly conditioned person, you’re more likely to gain from your workout in day to day life than someone who isn’t


The inverted row alternatives are a group of exercises you can do in place of the inverted row and achieve the same if not better results.

One of the biggest advantages of engaging in these exercises are that not only do they make you a better athlete, they can improve the standard of your life.

So if you’re looking for a wholesome group of exercises to do, these are some prime examples,

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