Hyper Training Lab #30: Upright Row Variation
Exercises Shown in the Video: Upright Row with Variations
Set-up: For the following exercises, stand in an athletic position with your knees slightly bent. Be sure not to arch your back or lock your knees. Control the SandBell through each exercise—don’t let the weight and momentum of the SandBell pull your arm down. If you have trouble maintaining a solid, deep grip into the SandBell, use a lighter weight SandBell until you build up enough grip and forearm strength for the heavier weight. Use proper breathing technique at all times—inhale while pulling the SandBell up and exhale while controling the SandBell down.
Repetitions/Rounds: We recommend starting with 10 to 12 repetitions per exercise and seeing how many rounds you can complete in 15 to 20 minutes. To make this circuit more challenging, increase the number of reps, weight or time period.
- Upright row—focus on maintaining a good grip into the SandBell. You may have to increase tension and pressure in your hand to ensure you’re gripping into the ‘meat’ of the Bell and not just holding the SandBell by its rim. If necessary, re-grab the SandBell to adjust your grip.
- Upright row with re-grip at the top—Focus on maintaining a solid, deep grip into the SandBell. Re-grab the SandBell at the top of the reach and decelerate SandBell momentum on the way down. Decelerate means don’t let the acceleration of the falling SandBell pull your arm down; use both grip and arm strength to resist and control the downward movement.
- Upright row with accelerated re-grip—This exercise is a maximum grip-strength challenge that focuses on grip, forearm and shoulder muscles. At the top of the movement, be sure to decelerate—don’t let the momentum of the SandBell pull your arm down.
- Pull-to-push upright row using center grip on the SandBell—Change your grip from a deep, solid grip around the rim to a center grip. Make sure to keep a handful of sand when gripping the SandBell—don’t hold the SandBell just by the neoprene shell. Re-grab the SandBell at the top of the exercise and full-force accelerate the SandBell onto the ground. When accelerating the SandBell downward and then picking it up, make sure to use proper squatting position—feet sit back into the heels, bottom tucked in (as opposed to arching the back with bottom parallel to the ground) and knees line up behind toes.
Targeted Muscle Groups: Grip, forearm, shoulder, arm and core (front and outside of the deltoid, the biceps and trapezius)
Upright row exercises are ideal for those training to:
- Build muscle strength—especially grip and shoulder
- Improve grip strength for football, basketball, baseball and softball
- Improve muscle coordination
- Improve fast-twitch response in grip and forearm muscles
- Increase overall upper-body strength
Recommended Equipment: For the upright row exercises, we recommend using a SandBell that’s approximately 15% of your body weight. Using a heavier weight builds muscle mass and strength, especially in the grip and forearm muscles. Listen to your body, if 15% is too much weight then use a lighter weight until your muscles get stronger. If you choose to exercise with a lighter weight, or have been instructed to do so, try increasing the number of repetitions to build muscle strength and endurance. If you’re able to handle more than 15% of your body weight, use a heavier weight as long as you can maintain correct form and control of the SandBell.
The upright row exercises can also be done using a SteelBell, dumbbell or any other free-weight. We encourage using a SandBell or SteelBell, as these tools work grip and forearm strength because you must grip into the Bells to perform the exercises.
Pre-Caution: These exercises and weights are recommendations and should not be completed if you have any pain or ailments in your grip, arm, shoulder, core or back. Hyper Training Lab exercises are designed to get you healthy, toned and fit. We don’t encourage over-training or strenuous exercising that leads to injury.