plank rows for upper body fitness.

plank rows

Given the right equipment and enough resolve, the chin-up/pull-up is superior to most other upper body workouts. But…not everyone has something to pull up from…and not everyone wants to work that hard! While no single move that I know of will have the same effect, the plank row comes very close to working the same muscles without the Spartan-like determination, strength, and confidence. The basic plank is a deceptively difficult move by itself. Making it a plank row by adding an alternating row makes the move even more challenging in terms of balance (improving your core strength and stability) and adds another element of shoulder, chest, and upper back work.

how to do plank rows.

Lie face down with your legs straight behind you, toes to the floor, slightly wider than hip-width, and palms on the floor out to the sides of your chest. Keep your neck extended straight out from your spine. Focus on pulling the belly button into the spine to keep your abs tight. Inhale, then exhale and push yourself up by straightening your arms, maintaining a straight line from the tip of your head to your feet. Walk your hands towards each other so they are at shoulder level but centered under your chest. Keeping your hips level, slowly lift one hand toward your chest by pulling the elbow up and back. Lower the hand back down and repeat on the opposite side.

technique & proper body mechanics for plank rows.

Make sure to keep belly button drawn up and in and shoulders down and back.

Keep wrists directly under shoulders and hips level to prevent wrist, back, and shoulder strain.

plank row alternatives.

If you’re not strong enough to stabilize yourself on one hand at a time, start with a static extended plank, leaving both hands planted at shoulder level centered under your chest and building up the time for which you hold the position.

If you find that your wrists are uncomfortable, try holding the position with your hands in a fist instead of palms on the floor.

If you’re ready for a little extra challenge and have some basic dumbbells or any other weighted object, try the move with weights in your hands to increase the intensity of your efforts.

post plank row stretch.

After a set of plank rows, sit back on your heels, stretch your arms out in front of you, and bring your head to the floor.

ready for more? join the 30-day jumpstart challenge!

30-Day-Jumpstart-Challenge

No matter what your fitness level, you can jump into this 30-day challenge and get your health & fitness journey started. Let your body and your knowledge of your time, commitment, and fitness level determine what intensity is best for you. Over 30 days, you will complete 8 basic moves 5 days each week. You’ll start out small, but if you choose to start and progress at suggested levels, you should be able to do the following at the final workout:

  • Cardio Warm-Up – 10 minutes
  • Push-ups – 45
  • Squats – 45
  • Bench Dips – 45
  • Glute Bridges – 45
  • Plank Rows – 90 (45 each side)
  • Lunges – 90 (45 each side)
  • Basic Plank – 2 minutes
  • Side Jackknives – 90 (45 each side)
  • Cool-Down Stretch

Read more about the challenge or sign up for updates in the sidebar now ↗ and I’ll send you a discount code to download it for FREE!

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