This Single-Leg RDL Variation Will Help You Get Faster and Prevent Injuries


The Banded Single-leg RDL to Row is a great exercise to train the hamstrings, glutes, lower back and lats to decelerate and accelerate the body during all sports. Whether you want to sprint faster, throw a baseball harder, or protect your body from injury, this exercise should be a part of your training regimen.


One of the greatest benefits of using a band anchored low toward the ground as pictured below is simple, the band creates a diagonal pulling force, opposed to that of a dumbbell or kettlebell which creates a vertical force loaded by gravity. The diagonal force created by the band is the same type of force placed on the body when called upon to decelerate a high-velocity movement like a tennis serve or a baseball throw.


Think about the force a body must control when it’s called upon to stop the arm of a baseball pitcher who is throwing a 100 mph fastball. It takes a tremendous amount of strength from the hamstrings, glutes and lats to slow the body down safely during that high-velocity movement. The diagonal force seen during this particular RDL mimics that which the pitcher experiences while throwing.


Additionally, if you train the big muscles how to slam on the brakes, the little muscles like the rotator cuff won’t have to attempt to do all the work, which in turn leads to a healthy, injury-free athlete. From an acceleration standpoint, this exercise teaches the aforementioned muscle groups how to rapidly extend the hips forward and drive the opposite arm backward simultaneously, which is how we ultimately propel our body forward. For all those reasons, the Banded Single-Leg RDL is king when it comes to becoming a stronger, faster and injury-free athlete.


Before jumping right into the Banded Single-Leg RDL, it’s important that the athlete can do a proper Single-Leg RDL with their own body weight before progressing to this more advanced version. There are several progressions that should be done with excellent form before moving on to the Banded Single-Leg RDL. Ensure the athlete feels their hamstrings and glutes during the exercise and remember, if the athlete has trouble stabilizing the exercise on one leg, use an easier progression. Perform reps between 8 to 20 reps.


Progression 1: Staggered Stance RDL to Row

  • Assume a split stance.
  • Hinge from your waist, keeping both feet on the floor at all times.
  • Drive your hips forward to return to the starting position.
  • Perform a row at the top of the movement.


Progression 2: Toe Tap Single-Leg RDL to Row

Stand on your right leg with the band in your left hand.
Simultaneously hinge at the hips while tapping your right toe onto the ground behind you.
Drive your hips forward and knee upward to return to the starting position.
Perform a row at the top of the movement.


Progression 3: Single-Leg RDL to Row

  • Stand with right leg on the ground and band in the left hand.
  • Hinge over at your waist and kick the left leg straight back without touching the floor.
  • Quickly drive your hips forward and knee upward to stand up tall.
  • Perform a row at the top of the movement.




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