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Strength Exercise of the Week: 1-arm Band Rotational Row with Weight Shift

Written on July 4, 2012 at 7:52 am, by Eric Cressey

This week’s strength exercise is one I learned from Dave Schmitz of  Dave’s the “go-to” guy out there when it comes to training with resistance bands, and he has a knack for coming up with innovative exercises with minimal equipment.  This is one such example that we’ve been utilizing more and more in the strength and conditioning programs we write.

The beauty of the weight shift is that it adds an extensive decelerative component to the exercise and allows us to integrate scapular control in whole body movement the way it occurs in athletics.  It also allows us to get a better training effect with less resistance.

I like utilizing this with our pitchers because it educates them on how to “get long” out front (improve trunk tilt at ball release) and stiffen up on the front leg at the right time.  The eccentric overload created by the band serves as a good reminder to not get lazy and go to mush on the front side.

This can also be utilized in group training settings when you want a compound exercise that folks of many different strength levels can utilize.  Simply stepping closer to the band attachment point can reduce the resistance and make it appropriate for a weaker participant without having to change the load.  

The exercise can be done with a cable as well, but I just don’t think that the weight shift component works quite as smoothly in the cable scenario.

In terms of progressions, we typically teach the standing 1-arm cable row first to all our clients and athletes, as it educates them on proper interaction of the scapula and humerus during rowing.  This is an exercise we’d consider adding into strength and conditioning programs after the first 4-8 weeks of working with a client.  It’s usually done either first in the training session as a power exercise, or later in the session for higher reps.

Give it a shot!

Also, if you’re interested in checking out more of Dave’s innovative exercises, be sure to visit, as he’s one of my co-contributors to the site and adds great content each month.

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10 Responses to “Strength Exercise of the Week: 1-arm Band Rotational Row with Weight Shift”

  1. Rich Mowrer Says:

    Also great for swimmers!

  2. gregory Says:

    Is there supposed to be a very deliberate and conscious contraction of the scap capsule area
    when performing these type of exercises or just
    let muscles activate(contract) naturally of their own stimulus from pulling on the bands?

  3. Rick Kaselj Says:

    Thanks Eric.

    Simple, yet effective exercise.

    Rick Kaselj of


  4. Conor Says:

    Looks like a great exercise Eric! I utilize resistance bands in my programs with many of my athletes, especially youth just starting resistance training.

  5. Henning Villanger Says:

    This would be an excellent exercise for karate or other martial arts!

  6. Eric Cressey Says:

    Gregory – There should still be a focus on scapular retraction.

  7. Zack Says:

    This looks like an excellent exercise, I am always on the lookout for great new ways to “spice up” my routine. I only have one question. What is the other end of the band attached to?

  8. Vladimir Kelman Says:

    Great exercise. It looks very synergistic to Cable Bar rotational exercises offered by a very good site by Naudi Aguliar.

  9. Eric Cressey Says:


    That’s just a band attachment to the power rack. If you wrap the band directly around the square-shaped rack, it can wear on it over time. The connector takes some stress off the band by applying the forces more uniformly.

  10. Greg Justice Says:

    When Dave and Eric speak…I listen!

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