Smith Machine Upright Row Video Guide

Exercise Profile

  • Strength
  • Machine
  • Compound
  • Pull (Bilateral)
  • Beginner
  • Shoulders, Traps
Shoulders Exercises Diagram Target Muscle Group

Exercise Instructions

  1. Select the desired weight and load it onto a barbell.
  2. Unrack the bar by rotating the safety latches off the j-hooks.
  3. Inhale, brace your abs, and then lead the movement by driving the elbows high as you pull the bar to chest height.
  4. When the bar has reached its peak, reverse the movement slowly while controlling the bar back to the starting position.
  5. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Exercise Tips

  1. Don’t lean back as you pull the weight up, keep the motion under control and don’t rely on momentum.
  2. This exercise may be contraindicated for some folks as they have a higher chance of impingement during the movement due to anatomical factors, shoulder mobility, and hand positioning.
  3. If you can, limit elbow movement to chest height to decrease the chance of potential shoulder impingement.
  4. If upright rows bother your wrists, consider a dumbbell, cable, or banded options as these place less stress on the wrists.
  5. As you drive the elbows high, ensure the head doesn’t jut forward.

Join over 500k subscribers who receive weekly workouts, diet plans, videos and expert guides from Muscle & Strength.


2 Comments+ Post Comment

No Profile Pic
Posted Sat, 01/26/2013 - 14:49
Jason Hebert

Yes you can, but with a free bar you may have to go lighter in weight since you don't have the rail to keep it stable. In my opinion the Smith Machine is a great piece of equipment but may be for a beginner to intermediate person. The free bar works out a lot of stabilizer muscles as well as the muscle group you are working out.

No Profile Pic
Posted Wed, 08/01/2012 - 00:12

My gym doesn't have this machine, can i make it just with the bar ?