T Nation

Barbell T-Bar Row Setup


I want to add these to my routine.
The last time I tried them i had trouble with the setup as i couldn't wedge the bar properly so the back end would stay in place.
Has anyone experienced similar problems?

I'm thinking that since i'm kinda tall i should have more of an upright angle than normal. Or maybe put plates in the other end as well. And I'll probably have to put the plates in the front end on a step so that I'll have an easier time getting into position.

Any thoughts?


Just put the back end up against a wall or in a corner.


That's kind of what I did the last time but it didn't work. Problem is, my gym doesn't really have corners where i could put it, at least not without a mirror as the wall that could be broken.


We use the base of the power rack or smith machine. I've even seen some plate racks the will work well.



Wedge it in the base of the power rack and have someone put their foot on the unloaded end of the bar


Put a 30 or 40 pound dumbbell against the wall to hold the barbell in place.


Yeah make sure you have someone put their foot on it. I dind't realize that it wouldn't work otherwise lol (I had it wedged up against a monolith (sp?))


Thanks for everyone's input.
I might have to try putting a dumbell on the other end. my gym does not have a power rack and the rack we have is built so that I can't wedge a bar in there, same for the smith machine i think.


Put a two 25 lb plates at the end of the bar. That is what I do.


Yes I might have to try this as well, thanks.


-agree: get someone to put a foot on the bar


I use a suitable corner at the base of a cable crossover machine, and lay a plate on top of the unweighted end.

Also exactly how you do the initial pull off the floor seems to make a difference. I can actually a lot of the time do it without anything put onto the unweighted end, but as I'm not 100% reliable with that, I weight the end. But the point is, for me there are ways of doing the initial pull that will jack an unweighted end right up, and others that don't. I'm not really sure what the difference is except that I expect the angle of force I'm applying is flatter -- not as sharply vertical -- in the pulls that don't lift the unweighted end up.

But it's better to have something sitting on top of the other end.


ive seen someone do it on a calf raise.


Ok so I did these today with a 10kg plate on top of the other end. I also found a better corner to wedge the bar to, now I found an actual corner of a wall instead of a shitty wedge I used before in with the seated row station.

Everything went well this time so I might have to stick to this setup. It still felt a bit unsecure though, but maybe it's just my mind. Bill, I was also wondering about the angle at which you lift the bar up. It seems difficult to consistently lift it up in a manner that the angle would be suitable.

What I find weird is how you say that it works better when you are less vertical. For me it works better when I'm more upright, that way I kind of feel like I can 'push' the bar to the corner and not have it come up.
Thanks guys.


Well, ultimately the arc of the bar is going to be the same no matter what.

And the degree to which one's force can be lengthwise (towards the unweighted end) is limited if, as I do, one is using for example a V-handle that is in no way physically attached to the bar.

But there is friction and so some force can be in that direction without the handle sliding.

It's just an experimentation thing, noticing when it works and when it doesn't, trying the pull differently.


Shorter guys can have more problems with this movement because being closer to the ground, their force applied can cause the back end of the bar to raise up as well.

Someone taller should actually find this easier to handle than that.

I don't believe Dexter Jackson even uses 45lbs plates on these because it would reduce his overall range of motion.


Yeah it makes sense, and true about the V handle, I kind of have to find the sweet spot where it stays there. But it's like you said, experimenting with how it works.


That makes sense. That's partly what I mentioned earlier and what i experimented with today with the angle in which i have my body. I think previously my angle was too low and it caused the back end of the bar to come up.


The sad thing is you had to be this specific ... face palm