Upright Rows (Barbell)
Branch Fitness
Category: Shoulders

Build your shoulders, rhomboids, and traps with the full range of motion upright row.


The upright barbell row is a full range of motion compound exercise to build shoulder strength and help widen your shoulders and upper body. Dumbbell shoulder presses also target similar areas of your shoulders, and the upright row adds the pulling movement to help you activate and build your traps, shoulders, and deltoids.

Step 1

Grip the bar slightly wider than shoulder width (for wide-grip rows), or slightly narrower than shoulder width (for close-grip rows).  Close-grip rows allow for a higher pull and extended range of motion, and wide-grip rows activate a larger area of the front shoulders (anterior deltoids).  For either hand position, grip the bar overhand with your palms facing toward you.

Step 2

Keep your wrists and elbows above the bar, ensure your back remains straight, and pull the bar up towards your chin, keeping the bar as close to your body as possible.

Step 3

Keep your elbows above your wrists and contract your upper back and shoulders at the top of the lift.

Step 4

Slowly lower the bar back to the starting position.

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