T Nation

2 Alternates To UR Rows


I promised to post these two "shoulder healthy" UR row variations. I use a foam noodle centered on a thin bar. In the first one, I grip with a wide grip-elbow to elbow span. I "roll" the bar up my front. This actually turns it into a good external rotation/serratus movement. I've only gotten up to 60 pounds for 15 reps, but it works. If you do heavy benching, I recommend instead of lateral raises.


The second is Haney "shrugs" (sort of). Again, roll it up the back. It is great for the rear delts


Can you explain how to do these? Is it just a shrug followed by bending your elbows and pulling the weight up further?


Just a question, how do you determine these were shoulder healthy. Im not criticising simply asking for clarification.


Excellent idea, using the noodle. I've seen people using them for all sorts of things but not like this, I've been using PVC pipe but that noodle looks like a nice alternative.

That first exercise looks good for rotators ... very important movement.

Also noodle might be a good thing to use to stop deadlifts scraping shins, if there is perhaps a skinny noodle. Or maybe a noodle over a pvc pipe, that way it will easily roll around the barbell and also be padded.


Your first exercise looks very similar to the muscle snatch complex (see Coach Davies' articles on healthy shoulders). It's a very good exercise, especially for those of us with shoulder issues.


Just that anatomically they avoid the internal rotation and impingement problems of UR rows, and for some, of over head presses in the upper half ROM


I don't worry about the "shrug" part. If it happens, it happens. I use this purely for rear delts. The thing is that the upper traps actually raise the humerus forward, and in this movement you are raising it backwards so using it as a shrug is a little oxymoronic.


How about face pulls, rope rows to the neck, bent rows to collar bone, and seated DB cleans. I'm guessing cuban press is out unless you use a wide grip and light weight, but that's pretty similar to mertdogs safe upright.