Dumbbell Bent Row
Start in a standing position with a dumbbell in each hand. Then move your hips backwards and bend forward from the waist. The most important thing is to keep your back as flat as possible. Extra bend in the spine (lower or upper back), causes unwanted stress in the low back.
As a general rule, you don’t need to bend forward more than 45 degrees and the further you lean forward, the harder it becomes to keep the back flat. It’s more important to keep your back flat than leaning forward more, so if you can’t lean forward that far it’s okay. As your back/core strength improves, you will be over to keep your back flat while leaning over more. Once you are in this position, your legs and back shouldn’t move for the rest of the exercise.
At the beginning of the exercise, your arms should hang straight down, so the weights will be directly beneath your shoulders. To begin the movement, contract your lats/back and arms to raise the weights. To get the most out of this exercise, focus on how you are lifting the weights and what muscles you are using.
A common mistake people make is to raise the weights straight up. This movement causes the exercise to become more of a bicep/arm exercise, when it should be more of a back/lat exercise. Instead of pulling straight up, focus on pulling the weights towards your hips. Additionally, trying to keep your forearms as relaxed as possible (they will still have tension) will help you use the correct muscles.
Perform up to 15 reps of this exercise and breathe out when pulling the dumbbells towards your hips. Stop the exercise if you feel any low back discomfort or if you are unable to keep you back flat.