HomeExercise LibraryHow To: Seated Cable Row

How To: Seated Cable Row

Seated Cable Row
The seated cable row provided it's performed with strict form will help you build that elusive, wide cobra style back taper that's so desirable.

Movement: Isolation

Targets: Back

Required: Cable Machine + V Bar Attachment

Optional: Wide Grip Attachment

Seated Cable Row Form:

Sit down on your cable row machine and place your feet on the platform to keep yourself in place during your set.

Grasp the V bar attachment from your cable row machine while maintaining an upright torso.

Pull the V bar attachment back until your legs and torso form a 90 degree angle.

Maintain a slight backward lean and push your chest forward before squeezing your shoulder blades and contracting to pull the V bar attachment toward your torso.

Squeeze for 1 second once you've reached your abdominals.

Maintaining your posture slowly extend your arms, returning the cables to the starting position.

Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Seated Cable Row Variations

Unilateral Seated Cable Row

Encountering issues with muscular imbalances? Finding yourself pulling through one side?
Utilize a pair of single cable attachment handles and perform your seated cable rows one side at a time, this'll also place greater emphasis on core stabilization & development.

Common Seated Cable Row Mistakes

Using Partial Range Of Motion

Each repetition should begin with your arms fully extended below your torso and end with the barbell up against your torso with your shoulder blades squeezed together.
Most guys continue to up and up the weight as their range of motion and form begins to degrade... don't be one of them.

See also
How To: Kettlebell Push-Up

Jerking Your Body To Complete The Repetition

The duration of the repetition should be slow and controlled, the top (contraction) portion of the repetition is by far the hardest, and if you're jerking your entire body to get the contraction this is a clear sign it's time to drop the weight down a bit.

Not Squeezing The Shoulder Blades Together

Every back exercise comes down to getting the correct contraction - the contraction is a result of squeezing your shoulder blades together and tensing your back muscles as you've pulled the weight towards your torso. You cannot get this contraction without squeezing the shoulder blades.

I feel as if I repeat this point far too often, however for years I was merely training my back without contracting the muscles correctly... needless to say for a few years my back lagged behind the rest of my physique in terms of both size and strength.

Similar & Substitute Exercises 

  • Bent Over Row
  • Shotgun Cable Row
  • Lat Pulldown
  • Pull-Ups

Any Questions Regarding The Seated Cable Row? Ask Below!

Scott J.
Scott J.
I’m SJ. I’m a fitness enthusiast and published author. I transformed my body from a skinny fat 135lbs with 18% body fat to a solid 192lbs at 8% body fat. I became qualified in a field I was passionate about. I founded several online businesses that allow me to pursue ideas and projects in my life that I am passionate about without having to constantly worry about money. I published several eBooks explaining the training and dieting techniques I used to achieve the body I have today. I learnt a plethora of new information on dieting and fitness by reading and applying what I read, to find out what does work and what doesn’t work, because as I’m sure you’ve noticed the health and fitness industry is full of non-sense claims and BS. I found out what was true and what worked for me and applied that knowledge. And you bet I had fun during the whole process.

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