The barbell upright row is a good exercise for building size and strength in your upper back region and your shoulders.
To develop larger and stronger muscles, load the barbell with a weight that you can easily complete 4-8 reps of the exercise with.
To improve your muscle tone and endurance, choose a weight you can complete 12-16 reps of the exercise with.
Here’s how to perform the barbell upright row:
1. Put the barbell down by your feet and stand behind it with your feet a shoulder width apart.
2. Bend over at the waist and grab the barbell with both hands using an overhand grip.
3. Straighten up at the waist, raise the barbell up off the ground and rest it against the top of your legs.
4. Bend your arms and lift the barbell up to shoulder height. Use the muscles in your shoulders and upper back as you perform this movement.
5. Straighten your arms and lower the barbell back down so that it’s in front of your legs.
6. Go over steps 4-5 for your desired number of reps, then place the barbell on the ground, stand up straight and rest for 1 minute.
7. Repeat the exercise two to three more times.
This exercise can also be performed using a straight bar attached to a low pulley as well as using dumbbells.
Word of Caution:
You should really only perfom this exercise with lighter weights, and you should make sure you have mastered the proper form and correct execution, as it is not uncommon to sustain shoulder injuries.