Of all the grand names assigned to exercises, the renegade row might have the most to live up to. How undertaking a tricky exercise with the aim of producing a chiselled upper body makes you renegade is hard to see, but it does sound better than the “press-up position plank alternating row”.
The combination of keeping yourself stable and lifting weights means the renegade row is tough on all manner of muscles. Almost every part of the upper body is working during the rows, especially the back and arms. Meanwhile the core is challenged, as you attempt to avoid toppling over.
How To Do a Renegade Row
Grab a pair of light dumbbells or kettlebells – err on the side of caution with the weight the first time you try the renegade row. You’ll probably need weights with a flat side to rest on – round dumbbells may roll under the inexperienced. Get into a press-up position with a dumbbell in each hand. Brace your body, then raise one of the dumbbells, supporting yourself on the other arm.
Row the weight upward until your upper arm is slightly higher than your torso, then slowly lower it back down to the ground. Aim for three sets of eight to 10 reps on each arm, you can either do one side all at once, or alternate. Once you can complete 10 on each side comfortably, increase either the reps or the weight.
You can build up to this in a variety of ways. Either opt for a very light weight, or rid it of weights altogether. Another is to rest your knees on the ground throughout. If you want to keep the weight up, then other easier row exercises might be a good bet. The one arm bent-over row reduces the difficulty while still targeting most of the same muscles. Put two dumbbells either side of a bench, then mount the bench supported by your right leg and arm and bend over until your torso is parallel to the floor. Grab a dumbbell with your left arm and perform five to 10 rows, before switching to the other side.