Programming the Renegade Row
There are two times during a workout when you can use renegade rows:
1. Before Workouts as an Extended Warm-up
You can use the renegade row as a “primer” exercise before heavy strength work. Because of the large amount of muscle mass and integrated stability required to do the exercise, you’ll fire up prime movers in your upper body while firing up deep spinal stabilisers.
If you do renegade rows after your warm-up but before heavy strength work, keep the weight light and do 1-2 sets of 5 reps per side. The goal here is to stimulate, not annihilate. If you do too much volume, you could fatigue muscle fibres needed to produce massive amounts of force on the compound lifts you’re about to do. Keep it light and controlled. The goal is priming and stimulation.
2. As a Finisher
At the end of your workout, your primary movers (triceps, chest, shoulders, lats) should be fatigued. Do renegade rows at the end of your workouts and you’ll fatigue the snot out of muscle fibres to increase metabolic stress to drive hypertrophy. Further, your core will work double time to prevent movement while you’re fatigued.
This will teach your body to prevent unwanted motion (and thus, prevent injuries) when they’re most likely to occur – when you’re fatigued. Try 3-4 sets of 5-7 reps with 60-seconds rest at the end of your workout.