Inverted Rope Row Video Guide

Exercise Profile

  • Strength
  • Rope
  • Compound
  • Pull (Unilateral)
  • Beginner
  • Abs, Biceps, Forearms, Lats, Lower Back, Shoulders
Upper Back Exercises Diagram Target Muscle Group

Inverted Rope Row Overview

The inverted rope row is a variation of the inverted row and an exercise used to strengthen the muscles of the back.

Using a rope to perform inverted rows provides a unique grip challenge as you fight to maintain your grip while performing the exercise.

The inverted rope row is also performed unilaterally, promoting balanced strength and a more symmetrical physique.

Inverted Rope Row Instructions

  1. Assume a seated position and grasp the rope with one hand using a neutral grip.
  2. Anchor your heels and extend your hips.
  3. Pull your chest towards the rope with your arms by flexing at the elbow and extending the shoulder.
  4. Slowly lower yourself back to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Inverted Rope Row Tips

  1. If you have access to two ropes side by side, that may be a better option at least initially.
  2. Given this is a single arm movement, you may need to set the feet wider to help prevent any rotation during the movement.
  3. To scale the movement, one may have to lower or raise the height of the rings. The closer you are to perpendicular with the floor, the tougher the movement will be.
  4. If regular repetitions with just bodyweight are too easy, progress by elevating the feet or adding a weight vest/plate to the torso. You can also use an old bookbag if you have it lying around but you should load this on the front of the body instead of the back as that can pull you into excessive extension.
  5. Remember, this is about movement quality. Just because an exercise is hard doesn’t mean it’s better, work within your wheelhouse and don’t force progression if you haven’t mastered the fundamentals.
  6. Don’t allow the head to jut forward as you pull.
  7. Keep the ribcage down and don’t focus on arching the back or forcing the chest up excessively.
  8. Make a straight line from your head to your heels.
  9. If you find the biceps take over primarily, then utilize a thumbless grip and think about leading the movement with your elbows. Your hands are just hooks at this point, focus on your upper back.