The Seated Row is a battle-tested back-building exercise that we all know. But…

…depending on the choice of grip handle you use when performing the seated row, it can significantly increase or decrease the safety and effectiveness of this exercise.

Here’s a great video from Dave Parise, owner or Results Plus Personal Training and recent Personal Trainer Hall of Fame inductee, showing you what grip handles may be a poor choice, and which grip type is a smarter choice to use for Seated Rows –

More Personal Trainer Tips on Seated Rows:

– If you can’t find a wider handle, or don’t have access to the PVC handles with straps (as shown in the video above), you can perform single arm seated rows, which also allow you a greater and more comfortable rowing range of motion.

– Using a lat bar to perform wide-grip seated rows is another  safe and effective rowing option we use at Performance U.

– If we’re working with grappling athletes, especially wrestlers; we’v e been known to use the close grip handle on the seated row to create a S.A.I.D training effect, which replicates the joint actions and specific force generation patterns the upper-body goes through when pulling in a cradle.

Go ahead and use close grip seated rows if you’d like…

No one is saying that using the small handles for seated rows will make your shoulders explode or that you should NEVER do them.

Remember: If we get get caught up in an overly simplistic black & white style of thinking that where we’re always trying to classify exercise concepts as either ” good” or “bad”… it means we’ve STOPPED thinking!

Exercises are just tools that are only as “good” or “bad” as they way we choose to APPLY them. What’s a good application in one scenario may not be so good (i.e. bad) in another. We’re simply displaying why WE choose to use a wider grip handle and why we feel it offers a bigger bang for your buck for most personal training situations we see.

Furthermore, if you’ve found great results with using close grip seated rows, you have no reason to stop doing them. Our suggestion is to be opened enough to try using the wider handles and see if don’t find, as we have, that they get even better results from seated rows… for the majority of training situations.

Heck, if you find you like both options (close grip and the PVC Handles), there’s no reason why not to use both in your back training (pulling) workouts.

Finally, if you use the “free” handles, it allows you or your clients to place their hands as wide or as close as they wish. However, with the close grip handles, everyone is fixed into the same width. Plus, the fixed handles don’t allow for any of the natural hand rotation that most people do as they pull. Due to this, we’ve found the free handles to create less stress in the elbows of people who occasionally have issues there. So… since the free handles offer everything the close grip (fixed) handles do, with the additional options of other grips and hands positions the fixed handles don’t – we can’t see any logical reason to not get yourself a set of the free floating PVC handles.

Performance U News:

The long awaited Secrets of Back Training 2-DVD set will (finally) be released in mid-November. And, it will come with the ultimate (limited time) Free Bonus gift!!!