ERF 528: You Can’t Change Your Body Without These 5 Things

Join My Summer Challenge HERE

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast I talk about the 5 main things you need in order to change your body.

Not only the 5 things… but the ONE THING in common with all of them.

Hope you enjoy and if you are interested in joining my summer challenge, you can do so here below!

ERF 527: Most Powerful Motivating Tool, Macros When Bulking, Dealing With Mental Side Of Fitness

Join The Clubhouse HERE!

Work With Our Team 1:1 HERE

Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast I go over some questions pulled from my instagram Q&A!

I hope you enjoy and get some value from it. If you did please feel free to leave a 5 star rating and review whereever you may listen!


ERF 526: How To Lower Cortisol Levels, Breaking All Or Nothing Mentality, Menopause Weight Loss, & More

Join The Clubhouse HERE

Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

Work With Our Team 1:1 HERE

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast I go over 5 main questions pulled from my instagram story!

I hope you enjoy the episode and get some value from it.

If you did, please feel free to leave a 5 star rating and review on whereever you may listen!

Chat soon,


How To Not Lose Fitness Progress On Vacation

how to not lose fitness progress on vacation

You’re searching for how to not lose fitness progress on vacation for a reason.

The past few weeks or months you’ve been working so hard to lose weight and get in shape.

You’ve been hitting the gym, dialing in your nutrition, and finally for the love of all things holy starting to be consistent with your fitness.

But… here comes this vacation that’s due up ready to ruin all of your progress and completely throw you off track.

Well don’t you worry you brave warrior you. In this article we will make sure you know exactly what needs to be done to figure out how to not lose fitness progress on vacation.

It’s going to be very important that you read every single section.

Please don’t skip around, otherwise you might miss something, leading to lost progress. You don’t want that, right?

Cool, so you will read the whole way through right?

Man, I knew I liked you. Let’s get into it.

How To Not Lose Fitness Progress On Vacation

First, Think About This

I first want you to stop and think about something.

How long does it take for you to see progress?

Do you see or make a ton of progress in a week, two weeks, or even a month?

No, right?

You so dearly WISH you did… but you don’t.

It takes a long time to see & make progress.

The same is true for LOSING progress.

If it takes you months to make progress, you do not undo that progress in ONE week of vacation my friend!

Now, I know I hear it already..


First, stop yelling, I am right here, you don’t need to yell.

Second, I get it. Let me explain this by telling you a story.

My Client Gained 10lbs

how to not lose fitness progress on vacation Jennie

This is a story about one of my 1:1 online coaching clients, Jennie.

Jennie had been killing it for multiple months in a row. She was really starting to rack up the lbs lost and making some significant weight loss progress.

She had a beach vacation coming up and was worried about losing all of her progress.

We talked back and forth about what she should do.. Should she still stay on track, let herself “live a little”, stick to her diet & workouts….

So many “shoulds”.

Yet we decided what was going to be right for her at this moment in her journey was to let herself go, not super stress about it, and just enjoy it.

And enjoy it oh she did.

Jennie gained 10lbs on that vacation, her weight shown below.

Well, f*ck.

It happened.

Her progress was lost. You might be thinking “Eric… this is an article on how to not lose fitness progress on vacation.. You’re not really convincing or helping me here…”.

I know, stick with me young grasshopper.

I showed you Jennie gained 10lbs on vacation.

What did we do?

Well, we didn’t freak out. We didn’t do some crazy cardio routine nor did we cut her calories down to next to nothing to “make up for it”.

We simply just got back on track to her regularly scheduled plan that we were doing right before she left.

Now, let’s fast forward a week and some change to see where her weight was then..

how to not lose fitness progress on vacation

Yep, you are seeing that correct.

Jennie was not only down the 10lbs she had gained, but she was then down another lb or so on top of that.


So wait, Jennie DIDN’T lose all of her progress that one week of vacation?!

The weight came right back off when she got back home?!

Yep, yes it did.

Why? How?!

Well, let’s break it down.

Just because you gain WEIGHT on vacation doesn’t mean you inherently gain FAT on vacation.

For you to gain 1lb of fat, you would need to eat 3500 calories above your maintenance calories.

So for Jennie, if say she was eating around 1500 calories which was her calorie DEFICIT, this would be 500 calories BELOW her maintenance calories.

If her maintenance calories are 2000, she would had needed to eat about 5500 calories per day for her to gain 10lbs of fat.

Trust me when I say, I can eat and I know you can eat too.. You or I can’t eat that much to gain 10lbs of fat in one week.

(No, I can REALLY eat.. This is a typical 1/2 of a breakfast for me when I go on vacation..).

That sh*t is impossible to gain 10lbs of fat in a week.

What happened then? Jennie just gained some water weight.

A mixture of a bit more carbs, sodium, and some alcohol thrown in the mix lead her to gain 10lbs of water weight on vacation.

Which, in all honesty, is not uncommon or abnormal to do.

Yet the key part is what we talked about earlier. She came home and got right back to her regularly scheduled routine.

She started hitting her calories, getting her walks, and doing her workouts just as she normally was again.

From this, this allowed her to simply drop the extra water weight she was holding onto.

Then even go BELOW in weight than what she was at before she left because she got back eating in a calorie deficit which meant she would lose more body fat.

Therefore, no Jennie didn’t ruin all her progress on vacation, and neither will you.

Because one or two weeks doesn’t make or break your progress, it matters what you do MOST of the time, not SOME Of the time.

Now, let’s dive a bit more in depth into how to not lose fitness progress on vacation.

How To Not Lose Fitness Progress ON Vacation: A Few Options

The way I see it you have 3 main options when it comes to vacation, knowing that no matter what you pick, you don’t lose progress in a one or two week time frame.

The first is taking the approach my client Jennie above took which was basically take the vacation, enjoy it, maybe even over indulge a bit, then just come back & get right back on track.

There is nothing inherently wrong with that and I think for some people (maybe you) that is a great way to go about your vacation.

The second option is maybe a bit more of an “unpopular” one amongst people, but I’m just going to keep it 100% real with you.

Option 2: Stay On Track

I want to tell you another story about my 1:1 coaching client Nicole.

how to not lose fitness progress on vacation

This is a good story that comes full circle, so stick with me here.

Within the first few months of Nicole and I working together she had a vacation coming up.

While Nicole was in fact making some progress with her weight loss journey, she was still early on in the process.

Unlike Jennie, she hadn’t been at it THAT long and she was coming from a place of NOT being in control of her health & fitness for a long time.

So, again, we talked about it and decided what would be best for HER at THIS moment in time in her journey?

( See a theme here? Hint : it is going to depend on YOU and where YOU are!! ).

For Nicole, at THIS moment in her journey, we decided that it would be best for her to stay a bit more on track during her vacation.

We didn’t necessarily have goals of making a ton of fat loss progress that week, but we did continue to count her calories.

She ate more around her maintenance calories that week, not necessarily in a calorie deficit, but she was still tracking.

We made sure she still got her walks in.

She made it a priority to get her workouts in during this time as well.

It was a two week vacation. During this period of time Nicole fluctuated between the same few lbs up and down.

While she didn’t “lose any weight”, she didn’t gain any weight either, and most importantly she kept her routine to stay on track.

For her, at that moment in her life, it was best for her to not break her routine as she had been OUT of a routine for so long just a few months prior.

She didn’t want to halt any momentum she was having and quite frankly, she had felt like sh*t for so long she wanted to feel better about herself.

For Nicole, at that moment in time, it was the right choice to stay on track.

Fast Forward A Year

Now let’s fast forward a year.

Nicole and I are still working together (and she is still my client to this day!).

She is due up to take this SAME vacation in the SAME place for the SAME duration of time, 2 weeks.

Now, at this point, she is down about 55+ lbs, has made insane changes, and has completely rocked out her routine for the last year.

She is a completely different person.

So, what did we do for that same vacation a year later?

Well, now because she had made so many changes to her life, body, and routine, she took this vacation to treat it a bit differently.

She didn’t count calories this time, she ate in moderation and enjoyed some different foods ( we will talk about this next! ).

Nicole still got her workouts in because she enjoys working out, not because she ‘had to’ to keep herself from losing progress.

Her walks still happened because again, she enjoys walking & moving her body.

But the main point here is she didn’t overly obsess about “staying on track” this time because she had gotten to a point in her journey where she was in a different spot than she was a year ago.

For her, this was the right choice for HER at THIS moment in her journey.

Which leads me into the next option.

Option 3: Moderation

So far we have talked about the two main options of how to not lose fitness progress on vacation.

The first extreme of saying “yolo!” and enjoying yourself.

The second extreme of going out of your way to be on point and on track.

That must mean the third option has to be somewhere in the middle?

Yep, you got it right my friend.

The way I like to do this is by following a few simple guidelines.

“Dorito Rule”

I heard a good colleague of mine, Mike Vacanti, once talk about the Dorito Rule.

The Dorito Rule is basically the rule where on vacation, if you want to enjoy it but not go overboard, don’t stuff your face with food in excess just because it’s vacation.

For example don’t pound an entire bag of doritos just because #vacation. You can eat doritos anytime, anyplace, anywhere you want.

Or a snickers bar.

Or some sort of generic ice cream.

That’s not “native” to the place you’re going for vacation, so don’t treat it like a free for all that way.

Now, if there is a food that is native to that place, ie Pasta in Italy, then go for it!

But don’t eat just to eat if it’s something you can get all the time, anyplace, anywhere.

3 Bite Rule

The next rule I like to use is the 3 bite rule.

Now, a lot of people on my instagram (@ericrobertsfitness !) got real mad at me for saying this because you know, god forbid you have rules around food.

You should just be able to eat whatever you want whenever you want, right?!

Regardless, I am not saying you have to do this, I am saying this is something I have done with my clients in the past & it has helped them so it might help you too.

In fact, I did this with one of my 1:1 online coaching clients Sophie.

how to not lose fitness progress on vacation sophie story

She was going on a cruise and we were trying to figure out how she could “enjoy” some foods and try some things without necessarily overdoing it & making herself feel like sh*t physically from eating so much food.

We came up with the 3 bite rule.

All it is is whatever you are going to eat, cookie, ice cream, a entree, whatever.

If it isn’t apart of your regular meal, just simply take 3 bites of it, stop and wait about 5-10 minutes, and decide if you want to keep eating it.

A lot of times we “eat just to eat” or because it’s there. We don’t really practice any mindful thought to it.

The 3 bite rule will allow you to practice this mindful eating strategy, along with if you decide to not finish it, you can still get the “taste” and experience of it without overly racking up your calories!

Portion control is one of the best tools you have in your toolbelt when it comes to your fitness progress on vacation.

You can always control it no matter where you are or what you are eating!

Because let’s be honest, it all tastes the same after 3 bites anyway. At that point you’re just eating to eat, which isn’t inherently a bad thing!

Yet if you want to practice some moderation and nail down how to not lose fitness progress on vacation, consider giving the 3 bite rule a go!

Walk It Out

One of the greatest songs ever, shout out to Unk! Also big shout to you if you know this song.

Okay, really though, a goal to help practice some moderation on your vacation would be to simply get your steps in each day.

You would be SHOCKED at what this does for your metabolism.

There is something called your NEAT, Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis.

This just means how many calories your body is burning throughout the day the day that is NOT your “dedicated workout” like a strength training workout or hiit bootcamp class.

NEAT takes up 15% of your total daily energy expenditure for that day.

Therefore if you make it a point to walk, be active, take the stairs, walk to the store instead of drive, take the extra stroll down the beach instead of laying on it (like I would do).

This can drastically help your NEAT which can help your calorie burn, WHICH, can help you practice a bit more moderation on vacation.

As opposed to eating more AND moving less, you may eat a tad bit more but you are also making it a point to move a tad bit more.

Not that you have to “make up for the food you eat” because you’re not a dog, you don’t need to be a good boy and earn your treats.

Yet the fact remains if you can be a bit more active and it relatively is a “low commitment” or low effort hanging fruit, it can help you out tremendously with your fitness progress on vacation.

Prioritize Protein

Another pro tip on how to not lose fitness progress on vacation is to prioritize protein.

Especially in the morning.

Protein earlier in the morning can help you not be as hungry throughout the rest of the day.

If you know you are going out to dinner or lunch, you might as well set yourself up to NOT be so hungry when going into those meals.

As well as even when you do go out to eat, again, prioritize protein!

When you’re ordering, order something that has protein as a main part of the meal.

Maybe at home you would get the grilled chicken salad because you need to ensure you’re in your calorie deficit.

On vacation, maybe you get the pasta with the grilled chicken breast as the main protein source so you can enjoy the pasta, yet still hammer home the protein.

9/10 if you make protein a “focus point” with your food, everything else usually falls in place quite well.

Since protein is the most satiating macronutrient it will very much help you from overeating, which is our next point.

Stop Eating When You’re Full

I know this one seems “simple”, and it also is easier said than done sometimes.

Yet even still it holds true, when you are full, stop eating.

Again a lot of times on vacation we “eat just to eat”.

It’s there, it’s new, it’s something different….

Hell, we don’t have to cook it so why not enjoy all of it!!!

Or even more so, you are paying for it, so you better finish all of it!

I’m telling you now you don’t have to do that.

You’re not a garbage disposal.

You don’t have to finish every lick of food just because.

When you’re full, it is okay, and a “good” thing to stop eating.

This is why I like slowing down the pace at which you eat too because the slower you eat the more time your stomach and brain have to talk.

Your stomach can tell your brain you are full and you don’t need to keep eating, which can massively help you from overeating.

What About Losing Muscle?!

Okay so those were my top few tips when it comes to how to not lose fitness progress on vacation and practicing moderation along with it.

I now want to cover something that plagued me for a long while which is, do you lose muscle if you don’t workout on vacation?!

Oh man, 16 17 year old Eric ruined a lot of family vacations because I was overly obsessed about not missing a workout.

I mean, if I missed a lift, that CLEARLY meant I was going to lose all my size, strength, and lean muscle mass I had worked so hard for….


Yea, you can see where this is going.

No, I wasn’t going to lose muscle, and you don’t lose any muscle when you go on a week or two vacation man.

In fact, you will probably come back refreshed, recharged, and ready to absolutely kill some workouts if you just give yourself a chance to rest.

If you WANT to workout while you are on vacation because you just genuinely enjoy it and want to, like Nicole did, or like I do most times when I go on vacation then sure do it.

But please don’t think you HAVE to workout when you go on vacation otherwise you lose all your gains because it just isn’t true.

It takes you at the very least 3-4 weeks of not working out to start to lose muscle & strength gains.

Even then, the losses are quite minimal, and when you come back to lifting they come back rather quickly due to that whole “muscle memory” thing you’ve heard about before.

Don’t stress about it and please, don’t be like 16 year old Eric and ruin family vacations over it.

If you want to workout, sick. If not, sick too.

Either way, you’re all good homie.

How To Not Lose Fitness Progress On Vacation : Final Word!

There you have it!

You now know your three main options for your fitness on vacation.

Take the time to enjoy, and maybe over enjoy!

Still be “on track” as much as possible.

Or, practice a bit of moderation and both things can be true.

There is not inherently one right answer. There is only a “right” answer for where you are currently at in your own journey.

Please remember that.

Most importantly remember that one or two weeks of a vacation does NOT make or break your progress.

One last time, you don’t make all your progress in a week so you don’t lose it all in a week.

It doesn’t matter what you do SOME of the time, it matters what you do MOST of the time.

Got it?

I really hope this helped you out and if you are interested in becoming a client in our 1:1 online coaching program, you can head HERE to fill out our application form!

Chat soon


ERF 525: The Next Time You’re Struggling, Listen To This Join the Clubhouse!

Work With Our Team 1:1

Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast I give you another “3 Reminders” so to speak about what to do when things get tough.

Anyone can “do good” when it’s all sunshine and rainbows, but the people who figure out a way to win even when it isn’t sunny outside…

Those people win forever.

Hope you enjoyed the podcast <3


ERF 524: More People Need To Talk About This In Your Workouts

** if you want to skip to the information part of the podcast it starts around 7 minute mark!

In this episode I announce my summer challenge that is coming out, as well as we talk about a “dirty little secret” that a lot of people don’t talk about with your workouts.

I cover some ways to combat this and hopefully help you “live your best life”.

Hope this helps & if you are interested in coaching with us I can drop our options below!

Join The Clubhouse!

Work With Our Team 1:1

Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

ERF 523: Finding Time To Workout Being A Mom Of 6, Dealing With Life’s Up & Downs, Ditching Hiit Cardio, Corissa’s Story

Work With Our Team 1:1

Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast myself and my assistant coach Linda speak with one of her 1:1 online coaching clients Corissa.

Corissa is a mom 6, she had dealt with some ups & downs, and talks about how’s been able to conquer her fitness journey despite all of that.

Hope you guys enjoy the podcast and if you do feel free to leave a 5 star rating and review!


Single Arm Dumbbell Row Form : A Complete Guide

single arm dumbbell row form

In this short guide I am going to show you everything you need to know about the single arm dumbbell row form.

We will cover the different muscles worked, different variations, and most importantly the do & dont’s of this movement!

Because trust me, NOTHING is worse than going into your workouts doing things incorrectly.

It’s not only limiting your results and not using your time as efficiently as you could, but it also vastly increases your risk of injury.

Which, if you get injured, kiss those gainz goodbye my friend.

To avoid all that, let’s dive into everything you need to know about the single arm dumbbell row form.

Single Arm Dumbbell Row Form


To start us off one of the main benefits of doing the single arm dumbbell row is that you can strengthen your back muscles.

Now, just saying “your back muscles” actually is not doing much justice because there are many different parts of your back muscles you can hit.

Don’t worry, we are going to be covering that in a hot second.

I want to expand a bit on the benefits of working your back muscles.

What do we as humans do a good 6-12 hours of the day?

Either sit at a desk hunched over typing on our keyboard, or, staring down at our phone typing / scrolling.

( Hell, you are doing one of those 2 things right now in fact! ).

This makes it very easy for our posture to be very anterior dominant leading to weak posterior muscles.

Okay, those two fancy words just mean

Anterior – the front side of your body

Posterior – the back side of your back

If you are consistently in a position of being hunched over on the computer or phone, you start to develop imbalances.

These imbalances lead to poor posture and strength which then lead to injury over time.

Not to mention a lot of what people do either on a daily basis or in their workouts are what we call PUSHING movements.

These are movements where you are PUSHING things away from your body.

Think like a push up or a chest press. Or, you can think about lifting something overhead to put in your cabinet.

People do not do nearly enough PULLING movements, things like pull things into your body.

Think about it, are you ever just going around the grocery store doing cart pulls? Where you walk backwards and pull the cart into you as you walk?

You’d look more like a weirdo than you already are, right?

Thought so.

The biggest reason people tend to have shoulder, mid back, or neck pain is because of weakness in their posterior muscles.

Then what people try to do is “stretch” their neck, back, etc. While this can be a PART of your routine, what you really need to do is strengthen your posterior muscles (back muscles) through proper exercise.

( Hence, why we are covering the benefits of proper single arm dumbbell row form! ).

I cannot tell you how many people I have coached who I’ve helped with their neck, shoulder, or mid back pain just from simply strengthening their back muscles via proper exercise.

When you strengthen these muscles, you help the imbalance. When you help the imbalance, it leads to better posture and less stress being placed on your shoulder / neck / mid back area.

Thus, leading to less injury over time.

Help With Pushing Movements

Another benefit from getting down some good single arm dumbbell row form is actually to help with your pushing movements.

We talked about these pushing movements above and how a lot of people do them mostly in their workouts or day to day life.

That is not to say pushing movements are inherently bad, because they’re not. It’s kinda like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. You gotta do your best to mix a bit of both in, ya know?

Pushing and pulling movements are no different.

In any of my programs I write inside of my Clubhouse I like to have at least a 1:1 push to pull ratio.

Meaning, for every 1 push exercise that I do I like to have 1 pulling exercise.

So if I do a chest press, I will do a single arm row.

I can give some more examples of pushing and pulling movements below.

Pushing –

Shoulder press

Flat chest press

Incline chest press

Push ups

Chest flys

Pulling –

Single arm dumbbell row

Cable rows

Lat pulldowns

Chin ups

Face pulls

Rear Delt Flys

In your training program I’d encourage you to see if you are having at least a 1:1 push to pull ratio. If not, I may look to make that one slight correction.

Not only will this help prevent injury like we stated earlier but it will also actually help you get stronger at your pushing movements!

Your back provides the “base” to push from. If you work your back muscles, you are going to have a much stronger, stable base to PUSH from.

If you are looking to improve any of the pushing movements mentioned above but just can’t seem to get stronger at it, try throwing in some of these pulling movements.

I think you’d be shocked at how much they help.

Single Arm Dumbbell Row Form : Do’s And Don’ts!

When it comes to the single arm dumbbell row form, as we mentioned, there are actually multiple different ways to complete this exercise!

None are “right” or “wrong”, they’re just depending on what muscles you are trying to work!

The form will be slightly different depending on which muscle you’re targeting, yet a few things hold true for a single arm dumbbell row no matter what.

Let’s cover those first, and then we can get into more specifics. It will make more sense that way.

Shoulders Down

Whenever you are doing any sort of row variation, you typically want to think about keeping your shoulders down and away from your ears.

A cue I like to use is “shove your shoulders down into your back pocket” or “create space between your ear and shoulder”.

You do not want to be shrugging your shoulder UP as you go to do a row.

This is going to cause some massive discomfort and strain on your neck area leading to injury.

You also just won’t work your back muscles as much, you will usually end up working more of your forearm or bicep muscle this way.

As well as your neck like we talked about, it’s just not in a “good” way.

So really try to be sure to keep your shoulder down and away from your ears, tucked into your back pocket.

Do Not Pull UP

Probably the most common mistake when it comes to the single arm dumbbell row form.

You are thinking about coming UP with the weight.

I get it, you’re thinking of moving your hand up to move the weight.

I want you to try and rid your mind of that.

Instead, think about going DOWN and BACK first, THEN go up.

Again, this is going to vary slightly depending on what muscle you’re targeting, but you never want to think solely about coming UP.

This lead to you shrugging your shoulder up, using more of your bicep and forearm.

If you have ever wondered why your elbow hurts, this could be a reason why. You’re putting strain on your elbow and forearm muscles instead of your back muscles.

You’re asking your elbow and forearm to do work that your back is supposed to do. That is no bueno my friend. That will end up in an injury every time.

Think about starting the movement by going down and back almost like you’re scooping the ground with your elbow to start, then you can lead with your elbow going back and up wherever you need it to go (depending on the muscle you work).

Which that is the next correction.

Lead With Your Elbow, Not Your Hand

single arm dumbbell row form

Okay this is actually probably the most common mistake.

Because the weight is in your hand you are thinking about moving the weight, thus, moving your hand.

I don’t want you to think about moving your hand.

I want you to think your hand is just a hook. Your hand is simply along for the ride.

Instead you are really trying to lead with your elbow and pull through your pinky as opposed to pulling through your pointer finger.

If you think about leading with and moving your hand, you’re bound to make one of the mistakes mentioned above.

Whereas if you think about leading with your elbow and pulling through your pinky, you will be SHOCKED at how much more you feel your back muscles working.

(And how much less you feel your forearm, bicep, and elbow!).

Don’t Grip The Damn Thing So Hard

When talking about the single arm dumbbell row form, this isn’t necessarily a “form” correction, more so just a tip.

Stop gripping the dumbbell so damn hard dude.

You’re choking the damn thing which again is leading you to work a lot of your forearm and bicep because you’re death dripping it so hard.

I want you to either

  1. Get a lighter grip where you aren’t acting like you’re holding on for dear life
  2. Go a thumbless grip

This way you will take stress off your elbow and forearm muscle and put it more on your back muscle.

I’d also recommend you using wrist straps as you get into heavier weight rows as well, I will talk about that at the end of this article.

Control The Way Down

Most people think the movement is “done” when you actually row the weight up to your body.


That’s ½ of the movement down.

The other half of the movement is you controlling what we call the ‘eccentric’.

This means on the way down.

The eccentric part is where you are stretching your muscle under load (load being the weight you are using).

This is an integral part of gaining strength and muscle so if you just kind of let gravity take the weight back down…

You are missing out on literally 50% of the movement. Which means you are missing out on 50% of the potential results.

Be sure to give a good 1-3 second count on the way down. Control the weight don’t let it control you.

Single Arm Dumbbell Row Form : Muscles Worked

Now that we know some basic form tips, one of the of the really cool parts about a single arm dumbbell row is that you can target different muscles by slightly changing up the variation.

Any sort of row variation is going to primarily target your back.

Yet, there are different parts of your back that you can look to hit!

The 4 main muscles we are going to take a look at here are the lats, rear delts, traps / rhomboids / mid back, and upper back!

single arm dumbbell row form muscle worked

The reason this is important is because to target each of these 4 areas your form is going to be SLIGHTLY different.

All of the main form tips apply from above, but do you remember the one form tip we talked about?

Lead with your elbow not your hand?

This is how you are going to determine what part of the back you are working most, where your elbow travels.

Lat Focus

When you are trying to work more of your lats during a single arm dumbbell row, then you want your elbow traveling down and back towards your hip.

You also want to keep your elbow tight to the side of your body.

Notice how in the video my elbow is NOT going past the mid line of my body though? If you were to cut my body in half from the top of my head down to my feet (please don’t do that though, I know this article isn’t the best ever but still!)

That would be the midline of my body. During a lat focus row you do not want your elbow traveling past the midline of your body. This will turn it more into a a mid back movement as opposed to working your lats.

Therefore with those couple of things you will be hitting a lat focused single arm dumbbell row form!

Rear Delt Focus

If you are focusing a little bit more on your rear delt, you want to think more about driving your elbow back at a 45 degree angle.

Not keeping it super tight to your body but also not flaring it out SUPER wide.

Drive the elbow back at a 45 degree angle and really think about moving your shoulder back with you. Not SQUEEZING your shoulder like you’re trying to pinch a pencil between your shoulders.

More so extending your shoulder back like you’re chicken winging your arm back behind you.

Upper Back Focus

Now if you’re working more of your upper back, you are going to drive your elbow a little farther out wide at a 75ish degree angle.

( You don’t have to get out your damn protractor, but hopefully you see the difference here ).

I used to coach people going out at a 90 degree angle, but I do not coach that anymore.

Reason being is when you flare your elbow out that wide you open up your shoulder joint and make it more vulnerable.

This is where it can feel very uncomfortable and it leads to a higher risk of injury.

Therefore, keep it “wide” but not SO wide… make sense?

Mid Back Focus

Last but not least if you are working your single arm dumbbell row form to hit your mid back area.

You want to get your elbow tight to your body, driving to the middle of your body, and this time you DO want it to go past the midline of your body.

Unlike the lat focus row where you were NOT trying to past the middle of your body!

Wrist Straps!

Okay, now that we know form and know what muscles we are working, lemme give you a quick tip.

Your back muscles, no matter WHAT muscles you are trying to work, are infinitely stronger than your forearm / bicep muscle.

Therefore once you start doing rows beyond just the first few weeks of you working out in the gym, I highly recommend looking into getting some wrist straps.

Reason being is because you want the limiting factor of your rows to be your BACK muscles, not, your FOREARM muscles.

If your forearms give out before your back does, then you are limiting the gainz you could be having with your back.

Not to mention if your forearm muscles have to work so hard you’re not going to work your back muscles because all you will feel is your forearms burning!

This will stall progress and potentially lead to injury over time.

Therefore, I recommend grabbing some wrist straps that you can use during your workouts.

I can link my favorite ones here below!

Versa Gripps HERE

Regular Straps HERE

I will also drop a video below I did on how to use wrist straps!

Btw, I would use these for all pulling movements, lower and upper body.

So rows, pulldowns, deadlifts, RDL’s.

Even for things like holding weight during a lunge or bulgarian split squat!

If you can make the limiting factor of the movement the muscle you’re actually trying to work, NOT, your grip.. You will see better progress every single time.

Single Arm Dumbbell Row Form : Final Word!

Welp, there you have it! I told you you’d learn everything you needed to know about the single arm dumbbell row form right here right now!

I hope you enjoyed this article and found value from it.

If you are interested in gaining access to content like this on steroids and all of my best workout programs, consider joining myself, my team, and all of our members inside The Clubhouse.

The Clubhouse is my training program where we get strong as hell, lose body fat, and have a fun a** time doing so.

You can check it out right HERE.

Beyond that, hope it helped, and chat soon!


ERF 522: 3 Friendly Reminders You Need To Hear

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast I give you 3 friendly reminders that I know you need to hear.

This journey of bettering yourself can be really tough sometimes – and I just hope hearing these 3 things can help you out along the way.

Also, hope you enjoyed my stories to start 😉

Chat soon -E.

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Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

ERF 521: Powerlifting Meets, Calorie Surpluses, & Becoming A Coach With Coach Mary!

Work With Our Team 1:1 HERE

Join Our 1:1 Coaching Program!

Join The Clubhouse HERE

In this episode of the Eric Roberts Fitness Podcast Coach Mary and I chop it out about all things lifting, eating, and coaching!

I hope you enjoy this episode and if you do feel free to leave a 5 star rating and review!

Coach Marys Instagram – @coachmaryerf