T Nation

Thick Dumbell for Rows?


#1

As I'm now training at home I need to get a dumbbell bar for rows. Would I be better off getting a thick 2" bar rather than the standard 1" specifically with this exercise in mind?


#2

Are you looking for a plate loadable dumbbell since you train at home or a fixed weight dumbbell with a thick handle?

And if it’s plate loadable, Olympic plates or standard?


#3

Thanks for the reply! I was thinking of an olympic plate loadable bar, unless here’s a reason that another option would suit better.


#4

Fastest/cheapest/easiest is as follows.

-Go to Home Depot or any store that sells plumbing supplies. You should be able to buy like a 10’ galvanized steel pipe. You want it to have a 1.5" inner diameter (which will be a 1.9" outer diameter).

-Have them cut it at 2.5’. You now will have a 7.5’ pipe and a 2.5’ pipe.

-Take a roll of gorilla tape, measure about 11’ from the end of the 2.5’ pipe, and just wrap the tape around it over and over until you’ve build up a substantial bulk. Do this on both ends.

-You’ve now built a thick handle plate loadable dumbbell. Use pony clamps or locking collars to hold the weights on.

-With that 7.5’ pipe, do the same thing with the gorilla tape. You now have a fat grip barbell/axle. This all cost you like $60.

In this thread, I make a circus dumbbell using a similar procedure. You won’t need the home depot buckets to pull it off though.


#5

That’s genius, fair do’s. I’m pretty sure I’ve got most of the materials in work to do this. Is there any reason why not to use a thick grip dumbbell for the majority of my rowing?


#6

[quote]slog wrote:
That’s genius, fair do’s. I’m pretty sure I’ve got most of the materials in work to do this. Is there any reason why not to use a thick grip dumbbell for the majority of my rowing?[/quote]

It’ll mean that your limiting factor will be grip rather than your back most likely. What you want to train/target with the movement will dictate the method. I would try 1 week thick handle 1 week regular, alternating each week, in order to keep things balanced myself, or 1 week thick grip without straps/1 week thick grip with straps.

Matt Kroc used to use the alternating approach with straps for his Kroc Rows (granted, with a normal width dumbbell, but still).


#7

Thanks so much for the advice! Today is operation dumbbell…


#8

If you can make a good DB handle, have at it. The only good DB handle is the one that Spud Inc. sells. It holds over 500 pounds of 10 pound plates and is a cut-down Texas Power Bar. Buddy actually makes them so they are awesome.

If you want the best in quality with GREAT knurling and the desire to move weight, that is my recommendation. Add FatGrips if you want to Chubby Chase for a few sets.


#9

Thanks for the recommendation, no wonder they call it The Cartoon Dumbbell!


#10

Unless your grip is very strong or your row is very weak, a thick bar will limit the maximum weight you can do. But your forearms will get much stronger in the process.