Body Row

The body row is an excellent upper body exercise and useful for those wanting to progress to full bodyweight pull-ups as it uses the same muscle groups.

Primary Muscle Biceps
Secondary Muscle(s) Triceps, Back
Difficulty Beginner
Also known as Bar Row, Bodyweight Row, Australian Pull-up, Inverted Row, Horizontal Row
Optional Rings, Pull-up Bar

How to do body rows

  1. Grip a bar or rings that are suspended at around waist height, with the feet resting on the ground.
  2. Squeeze the shoulder blades together and pull your chest up to the bar / rings.


  • Maintain a straight line with the body.
  • The closer the body is to horizontal the more difficult the exercise becomes. 
  • Beginners may bend the knees and use more of the heels to help push up to the top of the exercise, if required. 
  • If you don’t have a bar available at the correct height, a set of height adjustable gymnastics rings can be a good alternative. 

Body Row Guide

The body row is a pull-up progression exercise suitable for beginners.

It’s a similar movement to the pull-up requiring the same muscles, but is easier to perform as you’re not lifting all of your bodyweight and have assistance with the feet on the ground.

Body Row Progressions

The body row is one of the final progression exercises when training for full bodyweight pull-ups

As you gain strength with the body row, continue to lower the bar to increase the difficulty of the exercise until you are able to perform unassisted bodyweight pull-ups.


Always consult your GP before undertaking any form of weight loss, fitness or exercise.