I love training.
I love just about all of the stuff you can do with barbells, dumbells, kettlebell and everything else.
I absolutely HATE dumbbell rows.


They are hands down, the Worst Exercise Ever.

Why are they the Worst Exercise Ever you ask?

Well, if you do them right they will kick the shit out of you, leave you gassed and sore as a $20 hookers ass after the Navy comes in.
Heavy weight, high rep dumbbell rows are the Worst Exercise Ever.


  • Your grip gets fried.
  • You sweat like my old roommate at a paternity test and it drips in your eyes, down your arms and on the bench leaving a big salty puddle of DNA.
  • Your forearms get a painful, awful pump.
  • Your lats lock up.
  • You feel like you just sprinted with the Prowler and want to puke after a set.
  • And the WORST THING, once you finish one arm, you have to do it all over again right away with the other arm.

If I forgot any reasons why these are the Worst Exercise Ever, leave a comment!

All of the things that make dumbbell rows Worst Exercise Ever are also what makes them one of the best assistance/accessory exercises ever.
Dumbell rows:


  • Increase your bench
  • Increase your deadlift
  • Increase your squat
  • Give you a huge back
  • Make your yoke bigger
  • Make your forearms and biceps bigger and stronger
  • Give you a Harry Selkow like grip

The Worst Exercise Ever

I just hate them because they are probably the hardest accessory exercise I can think of.
Go ahead, hit me with a few.

The answer will be no.

Dumbell rows are still harder.
If you don’t think so, you aren’t going heavy enough for high enough reps.
Here are a few ways to make it a safer and more effective exercise.
There are 1000 ways to do exercises and many are good and some are bad.
If you are doing the classic knee on the bench fashion dumbbell row, I suggest you stop.



The Worst Exercise Ever

Not a fan of this variation.




Listen, we beat the stuffing out of our spines and skeletons with the big lifts. Let’s go easy on the spine on the accessory lifts.
Doing the Worst Exercise Ever in the knee on the bench fashion makes it super easy to twist your spine into ugly positions.

Twisty spine is no bueno.

Twisty spine is no bueno.


While I’ve never heard of anyone rupturing a disc from rows, I have heard of them doing this from picking up a pencil.
Do you think it was the act of picking up a pencil that ruptured the disc or the totality of all of the other stuff they did over the years that led up to it?
You’re all smart on this one.
It is the totality of wear and tear on the spine that leads to injury more often than not.
Let’s do our best to protect the spine on our lifts. I am not saying that you have to become a Brace Nazi, but set yourself up with little room to screw up.
We also see people using the knee on the bench fashion using their hips and legs taking the lats out of the equation.
If you want to train your hips, deadlift.
If you want to train your legs, squat or do lunges.
Rows are for your back dummy.

How to do the Worst Exercise Ever Safer

This is easy.
Use a 3 point stance as shown below.

The Worst Exercise Ever
This allows you to:


  • brace your abs and stabilize your spine
  • keep your spine in a much more natural position
  • limit the use of the hips
  • more effectively contract your lats
  • not jack up your back

But wait.
There’s more.

Want make the Worst Exercise Ever even more awful?

Use a thick dumbbell, wrap a face cloth around the bar or use Grip4orce.

You’ll curse me first and thank me later.


You can also add a metric shit ton of chain too.


The Worst Exercise Ever

Chains equal gainz


Now go and load up a dumbbell with something HEAVY and give me of 20.
Each side.

Ask me a question-Be sure and Type to Murph in the header

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Vincere vel mori

Total Performance Sports