Single Arm Dumbbell Row Performance Exercise

01 Sep Single Arm Dumbbell Row Performance Exercise

The development of lower and upper body strength is imperative for all athletes. Increases in total body strength allow the athlete the potential to generate more power, reduce injury, and increase overall performance during competition.

The athlete, coach, and trainer must recognize the kinetic chain operates as a collective unit to perform athletic actions during competition. As a result, the strength and conditioning program of the athlete must develop the neuromuscular system of the body in accordance to the requirements of the athlete. This necessitates the strength and conditioning coach develop the kinetic chain as a unit through multi-joint exercises and limit isolation movements.

The completion of this aforementioned requirement can easily be achieved by understanding how to develop the strength parameters of the kinetic chain via push and pull patterns. Addressing these strength patterns will allow the strength and conditioning coach the ability to train the kinetic chain as a unit. The push and pull patterns of the kinetic chain will include modalities for the both the upper and lower body.

These modalities will address the following strength patterns; lower body push (knee dominant), lower body pull (hip dominant), upper body pull (vertical and horizontal patterns), and upper body push (vertical and horizontal patterns). Additionally, the strength coach should also address bilateral and unilateral patterns. This would include patterns such as the single leg squat  and single leg dead lift.

A very good and basic upper body horizontal pull exercise is the single arm dumbbell row. This would be classified as a unilateral exercise as it is performed in a unilateral action.

Improves Your: Upper  body unilateral pull strength

Target Area: Posterior chain of the upper body

Why It’s Important: Optimal performance of all athletes requires a baseline of neuromuscular strength. This allows the athlete to generate power, limit the potential for injury, and increase overall performance.

The Common Problem: The athlete is limited in terms of neuromuscular strength within the kinetic chain.

The Solution: A comprehensive strength and conditioning program where the functional strength parameters of the entire kinetic chain are developed.

Single Arm Dumbbell Row

Set Up:

  • Grasp a dumbbell with the right hand and place the left hand with the arm slightly bent on top of a bench
  • Set the feet shoulder width apart, knees bent, hips pressed backwards, and back flat
  • Extend the right arm straight while maintaining position of your body



  • Pull the dumbbell upward towards your torso by bending the right elbow
  • Continue to pull upward until your hand is next to the rib cage
  • Pause slightly, return to the starting position of the exercise and repeat


About Performance Coach Sean Cochran: Sean Cochran, one of the most recognized performance coaches in sports today. A career spanning positions with 2 major league baseball organizations, over 10 years on the PGA Tour and work with top professionals including three-time Masters, PGA, and British Open Champion Phil Mickelson, future hall of fame Trevor Hoffman, and Cy Young award winner Jake Peavy provides Sean a proven track record of success.  He has been involved in the production of numerous performance videos and authored books including; Performance Golf Fitness, Complete Conditioning for Martial Arts, and Fit to Hit. He has been a presenter of educational seminars for numerous organizations including the world renown Titleist Performance Institute.