Barbell Rows are a full body, compound exercise. They work your upper-back, lower back, hips and arms. They build a stronger, muscular back and bigger biceps. Barbell Rows are one of the most effective assistance exercises you can do to increase your Squat, Bench Press and Deadlift. Barbell Rows are easy to cheat. You can lift heavier weights by using your hips. But your upper-back should do most of the work.