Exercise You Should Be Doing: Batwing Rows

by 2 years ago


Your posture sucks. It’s downright terrible, actually. Chances are you’re walking around like the hunchback of Notre Dame, only you’re not a charming Disney character.

The primary cause of this is all of the horizontal pressing you like to do on international chest day, shoulder day, and every other day of the week. All of that pressing leads to serious internal rotation at the shoulder joint, and inhibited back muscles.

You’re probably thinking it’s all-good because you do rows, but I’m here to tell you that you’re probably screwing those up to. Sure, rows are awesome. I love rows. But you need to do them well to get benefit from them.

Which is why we’re talking about the batwing row today.

Batwing rows are one of the best rowing variations out there for waking up your rhomboids and retraining your shoulder blades to protract and retract properly, which can do wonders for your posture.

Why batwing rows work so well.

Most rowing variations tend to hammer the lats, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Well-developed lats lead to an awesome v-taper. But batwing rows change the game because they place the focus on the rhomboids and rear delts, which can dramatically improve posture, appearance, and upper back strength.

And in case you’ve forgotten, your posture is pretty damn important. Not only does it make you look like you actually know what the hell you’re doing with your life, it makes you more attractive, and actually impacts your confidence levels. Batwing rows can very seriously make you a more confident and attractive individual.

One of the biggest reasons having improved rhomboids is such a big deal is they act as stabilizers for so many different exercises. However because most people have such terrible posture, the rhomboids are inhibited, or not firing properly.

This can impact your stability in a variety of upper body lifts, and lower body lifts like the front squat.

How to start incorporating batwing rows.

Batwing rows are a simple exercise to start working into a program. There’s no need to hammer them with incredibly high volume or heavy weights. Instead, just start finishing each pulling workout with 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps a piece while focusing hard on holding the weight at the top of each rep. On the last rep of each set I like to recommend holding the weight for 8-10 seconds to really hit the rear delts and rhomboids.

One major coaching cue I love to use with clients is to let the shoulder blades control the movement; everything should be controlled by letting your shoulder blades protract around the bench, and then retract by pulling them together.

Give the batwing row a try on your next upper body day. Your lifts will improve, and so will your posture. As a result, you might just get laid more, because there are weird chicks out there who get off on good posture.

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