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bent over barbell rows?

I just started doing these. I’m not sure if I’m doing them exactly right. I did them for the first time yesterday and today my hamstrings are totally sore (along with my back). I know they’re not sore from anything else cause I didn’t do anything that involves legs. Should I be using the hammies that much with this exercise?
If anybody can help me out, I’d appreciate it. Thanks!


I had the same problem when I first started doing Bent Over Rows. After including more Deadlifts, Stiff-Legged Deadlifts, and more Bent Over Rows the weakness of my hamstrings was brought up to par. Try to do some work for your hamstrings as well and keep doing your rows; eventually you’ll get used to it. Good luck.

The weight is partially supported by your hamstrings during BOR’s. Like Jeff T said, it could be an indication that your hamstrings are weak. You may want to add some RDL’s into your routine for a while and prioritize hamstring work.

Like the others said, your hams are stabilizers for the movement, as is your lower back, so if you work these groups a little more, you’ll strengthen them and you’ll be fine. If you bring your lower back up, you will find virtually every exercise you do will benefit. Do some deads! Whatever you do, don’t give up on the rows.

Agree with most of what’s already been said. Just want to add, it might help for you to:

  1. MAke sure that there is always a slight bend in your knees.
  2. Try to bring the bar up to mid-abdomen instead of to your groin (you might need to drop weight some).
  3. Keep you upper body (torso) STILL at around a 45 degree angle to you upper legs (which are bent).

    If you DON’T do these, then you are really performing a combination of a BOR and a stiff legged deadlift- not wanted!

    Give it a try. Hope this helps, SRS