Looking to Mix It Up: Try Rowing
Want to get a great all over body workout in one spot? Tired of
the same ole’, same ole cardio machines? Consider the
advantages of using a rowing machine traditionally known as the
Traditionally rowing machines were used to train rowers
(particularly sculling) indoors. However, recently their
popularity in gyms and home gyms is growing. This is because of
the diversity of the training and the benefit of the total
body workout you get from a rowing machine.
Basically you sit in a seat, place your feet in pedals, grip
handlebars and row! This is simulating the activity of rowing a
boat. The seat slides back and forth to allow for the free
flowing, fluid movement.
This piece of fitness equipment combines both cardio exercise
and strength training working all of the major muscle groups
all at once. Although it is considered to be a low impact
machine there are cautions for users, particularly the novice
Watch Your Back!
One of the most common beginner mistakes when using rowing
machines is using the back rather than the leg or arm muscles.
The lower back is at risk when you use the machine
improperly or have the wrong form.
Be sure to not jerk the handles rather move smoothly. Don’t
lean too forward or too much backward as you ‘row.’ Be sure to
keep your abs tight and emphasize using the legs and arms, not
the lower back. Start off slow if you’ve never used a rowing
machine before. It’s recommended the beginner start off with
just 10 minutes and gradually increase.
In addition to the back improper or overuse of this product can
negatively impact the knees, hips, shoulders, hand areas, and
elbows. If you already have existing problems in any of these
areas (especially the back) you may want to re-consider the
Although these machines can be costly, the higher quality ones
are usually well built and can last for years. Let’s look at a
few of the more popular rowing machines.
3 Popular Rowing Machines
Concept 2 Rowing Machine
Often found in gyms this model sets the standard for the
machines that soon followed. Retailing for $900 it’s an
investment to consider but this rowing machine is viewed as one
of the best on the market.
It measures 95 x 24 x 14 inches, weighs 57lbs, and has a 500lb
This rowing machine features a quiet flywheel for noise
reduction, a tracker that displays distance, speed, pace,
calories, and watts. There are preset workouts as well as FISH
games. It also comes with free online
Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 Rowing
basic type of rowing machine this retails for $150 and folds
up. It measures 23.5 x 46 (w x l) and weighs
38.8lbs. It tracks time, calories, and stroke
count. This rowing machine accommodates a user up to
Stamina 15-9003 Deluxe Conversion 11 Recumbent
This rowing machine retails for around $600 and can double as a
recumbent bike and leg press machine. It measures 74.5 x 25.5 x
10 (w x h x d.) It tracks speed, distance, time, calories, and
pulse displayed on the monitor. It weighs 102lbs and has wheels
to aid in mobility.
One of the most important considerations with this kind of home
exercise machine besides the health of your back is the room
you have. Although there are the fold up versions it pays to
invest a bit more money (if you have the room that is) on a
better rowing machine. Yes, it’s more expensive but well worth
it to get a high quality machine that prevents injuries and
keeps you motivated.