How to split a table horizontally in MS Word

Organizing text and numerical information on a table is a great way to present them. After all, the rows and columns can be customized. However, you may encounter difficulties like splitting a table horizontally into two separate ones. This is because it’s usually already too late before you realize that the data in your table is best split up. Well, you’re in luck! MS Word offers more than one way to split tables horizontally in your document.

Now, there are about two ways to split a table horizontally in Word. 

2 Ways to Split a Table Horizontally in Word

  • Using the Split Table button
  • Using shortcut keys 

Let’s dive right in. 

Method 1: Using the Split Table button. 

If you prefer using just your mouse to split a table, you are only around three clicks away with this method. Here, we will be looking at the Ribbon or the basic toolbar located at the top of your MS Word window.

Below are steps to access the Split Table button in Word. 

Step 1: Open up a Word document. 

First off, we’ll need to open up a Word document. Feel free to use your own personal file if you already have one open. Otherwise, you can always choose to create a new blank one. Just make sure to insert a table before proceeding to the next step. 

Step 2: Click on a table row. 

Once your document is ready, go ahead and click on the row that you want to turn into the header of the new table. 

For this example, we’ll click on the third row. 

Step 3: Access the Split Table button.

With your cursor staying on the table, you can click the Layout tab under the Table Tools category displayed last on the Ribbon. As mentioned earlier, the Ribbon is a basic toolbar found at the top of your MS Word window. From the Layout tab and click the Split Table button. 

Note that the Table Tools tab will only be visible if the table is selected beforehand.

Congratulations! You’ve just used the Split Table button to fix the problem. Still a little puzzled? Don’t fret, here’s an easier one.

Method 2: Using Shortcut Keys

There’s no faster way to split a table horizontally in Word than by simply pressing a combination of keys on your keyboard. This method allows you to split your table without removing your focus from the screen. 

Here’s how you can do just that. 

Step 1: Open up a Word document. 

Before we get started, we’ll need to open up a Word document. If you don’t have one yet, then you can start a new one and make sure there’s a table in it. With this, we’re already halfway done. 

Step 2: Click on the row. 

Once your document is open, click on the row where you want the table to be split. Note that MS Word will turn the selected row into a new table header. Next, press the CTRL + SHIFT + Enter keys on your keyboard. 

For this example, we’ll click on the fourth row. 

After using the shortcut keys, this is the result we got. 

Wonderful job! You’ve just used a shortcut key to split a table horizontally in Word. 

Merging Split Tables in Word

If you happen to be in a situation where you need to reattach two separate tables, we got you.  In this section, we’ll show you the steps on how to merge split tables when the Undo button just won’t cut it. 

Take note that the method presented below simply connects the whole row of the selected cells on a table to the one it is directed to.

To merge a table with one below it, simply select the entire first table and press the ALT + SHIFT + ARROW DOWN keys on your keyboard. Conversely, use the ALT + SHIFT + ARROW UP keys after selecting the second table. 

If there are text or other objects between the tables, just continue pressing the arrow key to the direction of the table you want to keep. You can even move the selected cells in between the rows of that table.

For this example, we’ll select the first table and merge it with the second one. 

If you have fewer columns on the second table, applying the same steps will give us a table like the one below. 


Congratulations! You’ve reached the end of this tutorial. We hope we helped you figure out how to split a table horizontally in Word. Before you go, allow us to give you a quick rundown of what we’ve discussed. 

There are a handful of reasons why you’d split tables horizontally in Word. Whatever yours is, you’ll surely find it to be essential. In this article, we showed you two methods to easily split tables in Word. We demonstrated how to access the Split Table button and what the keyboard shortcut is. 

We hope you’ve found this article helpful! 

Leave a Comment