Cable Row With Hold

An anatomical drawing of a man performing a cable row. He's at the start of the movement with his arms straight. The muscles that are active in performing the cable row are highlighted and labeled.

The cable row with a hold is one of my 2 favorite horizontal pulling exercises for wrestlers.

Although vertical pulling (pullups and chinups) are more commonly performed, rows are equally, if not more important.

Think about the pulling you do in a match…

Is it usually over head?

Or is it toward your torso?

Vertical pulling is most helpful when you’re in on a shot and your opponent has sprawled out and, as a result, you’re extended.

Learning how to power through this situation isn’t your best bet.

Instead, work on your technique and timing so you don’t get stuck there.

Not that having vertical pulling strength isn’t important, there’s just a lot more horizontal pulling going on during a match.

Here are just a few situations.

1. Pulling in a 2-on-1.

2. Securing a body lock.

3. Applying a tight waist.

4. Pulling in a high crotch or double leg.

5. Controlling an underhook.

See why I think horizontal pulling is pretty important?

Anyway, here’s a video on the cable row with a hold.

The hold at the end build static strength. This is required to secure the positions above once you’re there.

It also helps get better recruitment from the lats. Here’s a post that details the research- Quick Adjustment To Score More Takedowns.

Here’s a video of a single arm cable row (no hold shown).

Another way to increase recruitment is to add bands.

I anchored a hook near my pulldown/row machine.

A picture of a metal hook anchored to the floor with concrete anchors. A band is attached to the hook and is pulled up to the bar on a lat pulldown/low row machine where you can load plates.

However, the gym you go to may not want you drilling holes in their floor. So, use a dumbbell and run a band from it. Just make sure the dumbbell is heavy enough so it doesn’t go flying as you row.

A picture of a 50-pound dumbbell under a plate loaded Lat Pulldown machine with a band running between the band to the plate loaded portion.

Additionally, while there are many different attachments you can use, I prefer narrow grips.

Why?

Because most of the pulling you do in a match is done with your hands close together, or locked.

Finally, as far the hold goes- I suggest anywhere from 3-5 seconds. I think that’s about the average time you’ll need to apply it on the mat. If you think you’d benefit from a longer hold, by all means, feel free to extend it.

A picture of Kyle Dake and Dickie White.
Hi, I’m Dickie (the author of this blog). Here I am with my good buddy, Kyle Dake. While he doesn't have a nice coat like me, he is pretty good at wrestling. Here's what he said about my training system:

Before I began lifting using Dickie's system my wrestling skills were getting slightly better. I've now been lifting under his guidance for more than 5 months and I have begun to dominating ALL of my competition. At first I had little faith in Dickie and his program, but now I would run into a wall if he told me I would get stronger! I know it sounds insane, but I would. The bottom line is Dickie is an expert and knows what he is talking about. If you want to defeat those kids whom you've always lost to and reach a level you never thought possible, I suggest you start lifting using Dickie's system immediately.

-Kyle Dake, 4X NCAA Division 1 National Champion
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Want to see what other wrestlers are saying about my training system? Check out my Success Stories page.

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Want to learn more about Dickie? Check out my About page.

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Want to get started on a program today? Read this post and download your free program- 12 Week Training Program For Wrestlers.

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