Dumbbell Incline Row

Exercise Summary
Primary Muscle(s) Middle Back
Secondary Muscle(s) Biceps, Lats, Shoulders
Equipment Dumbbell
Emphasis Compound
Type Pull

Dumbbell Incline Row Instructions

  • Set an incline bench to about 30-40 degrees.
  • Lay with your stomach and chin pressing against the bench. Situate your legs on each side with your feet secure to the floor.
  • Hand placement will dictate your back stimulus.
    • Neutral grip= more lats 
    • Pronated grip= mid-back
  • Pick up the dumbbells up. Let your arms hang fully extended in front of you. You do want a slight bend in your elbow.
  • Pronated Grip
    • Activate your scapulas to raise the DB's up slowly towards your chest.
    • Imagine you are pinching a quarter between your shoulder blades.
    • Do not actively pull with your arms, they remain passive.
    • At the top, you should feel like a scarecrow.
  • Neutral Grip
    • Use your lats and mid-back to pull the DB up & around your body.
    • Don't let your upper traps shrug.
    • Your arms are a lever tor the DB's, they remain passive in the exercise.
    • The DB's should be slightly above your hips at the top,.
    • Feel like you are pulling the DB's around your body  
  • Pause briefly at the top, then, lower the weights in a controlled manner.


  • You can use Dumbbells or Kettlebells to complete the movement.
  • If going heavier in weight, the size of the implement being used will have an effect on what grip you employ.
  • Your torso remains tight and in the same position from start to finish. Don't pull your torso up/back or overextend/arch your back to move the weight. 
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