Renegade Rows – Do You Make These Mistakes? Part II

A reader of this site, Andy, asked me in Part I of the renegade rows series what to do once renegade rows become way too easy. He says he doesn’t feel his abs sore after workout. I will answer this in two parts. First, I wanna make something clear regarding muscle soreness. It is a sign of only one thing – that your body was not ready or adapted for the stress that caused the soreness. Nothing else. So you may continue to workout, especially when training for strength as opposed to muscle size (these are two different goals!), without needing to blast your body so that it’s sore every time.

The second issue is whether you do the renegade rows with proper form to ensure that your core gets maximum stimulation. So in this article I will address the issue of proper form in more detail.

Good Explanation Of Proper Form


This video is very helpful in understanding how to transfer the weight between your arms so that you can row with the free arm. Just watch it and you will see what I mean.

My Buddy Vasko Doing The Exercise PERFECTLY

Vasko is very strong for his size 6’2”, 190 lbs, can deadlift 200kg+. Note that he is an athlete and needs his body weight to stay down, yet his strength needs to be as high as possible to be fast and explosive. This is what the relative strength advantage is all about.

Here Are Examples Of How NOT To Do It

This guy is twisting like mad. Remember, this is an exercise in stabilization. It is NOT a back/rowing exercise.

Renegade Rows are done to teach and enhance core stabilization. Low reps are the only option here. Sets of 10 while good for fatiguing the muscle and building it up, are USELESS here. Maximal contraction is the goal when training for stabilization.

This guy is actually walking around with the exercise. He is not getting the core strength benefits from this exercise.

It is true that he is burning some calories – but again the renegade row is NOT a fat loss or general physical preparedness exercise. It is a drill that makes your abs freaky strong and rock hard. If done correctly!

Babe by Vincent

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