Rowing machines really are an all-in-one package, offering one of the most efficient uses of your time, ensuring you’re getting the most out of every second of exercise. While at first they may seem like a highly specialist device for serious rowers, many users are surprised by the many benefits that rowing machine exercises can impart to pretty much any type of trainer. They’re suitable to just about every fitness level, and their intensity can easily be modulated to suit the user. Below is a breakdown of the benefits of rowing machines to help you decide whether they’re right for you and how you can get the most out of them.
The leg and back muscles are the focus on the drive forward, as they’re engaged to stabilise the body throughout the movement. These include the hamstrings, glutes, calves and spinal erectors. On the pull back, the upper body muscles groups in the arms and torso are activated as you drive against the resistance of the machine. This includes the quads, biceps, forearms and lats. Throughout this, your core is working hard to maintain form, power and stability.
Total Body Workout
Rowing machines are probably the closest a single device can come to providing a full body workout, allowing access to most major muscle groups, and allowing the user to simultaneously improve cardiovascular health while maintaining muscle mass. The compound effect of working both the upper and lower body when utilising proper rowing technique means you expand a greater amount of overall energy in your workout. This makes them extremely effective at increasing intensity, and ensuring you’re always maximising the exertion of each exercise.
Accessible & Low Impact
One of the biggest advantages of rowing machines that will please many users is how easy they are on the joints. Rowing exercises minimise excess muscle tension, and allow you to get all the benefits with the comfort and security of reduced risk of injury. A rowing exercise is a type of horizontal pull exercise, which is commonly considered a safer and more effective alternative to vertical pull exercises such as pull ups. The fact that rowing exercises are seated also adds to their safety, as there is never any risk of falling or a piece of the machinery hitting or dropping on any part of the user’s body. This makes them a great option for users in rehabilitation or more generally recovering from an injury.
Appropriate for All Fitness Levels
The great thing about rowing is that you can really make it your own. Intensity can be adjusted to suit your level, especially when working with a dynamic resistance machine. While rowing technique is very important, it’s not as complicated as it may appear at first. For a more comprehensive breakdown on how to use a rowing machine, click here.
Rowing is highly effective at increasing your heart rate and always allowing you to work at your own maximum intensity. This makes them great for improving cardiovascular health, while also maintaining muscle and building strength, giving them an edge over other cardio machines such as treadmills.
Power & Endurance
Probably one of most important advantages of rowing is its focus on power, rather than speed. Power refers to the ability to exert the maximum amount of energy in the shortest period of time. Proper rowing technique will involve constant power to move your body back and forth on the machine.
Space Saving / Portable
All of our rowing machines are easily foldable and can usually be stored upright, meaning they can be easily fitted into just about any home workout space. Rowing machines will also have wheels and are generally lightweight, meaning they can be easily transported or moved about a space with very little effort. They’re a great alternative to a treadmill or cross trainer, which are both machines that usually take up a greater amount of space. This makes a rowing machine an efficient option for those wanting to save on equipment.
Efficient for Reaching Goals
Rowing exercises work multiple training modalities at once, making them an incredibly efficient tool at reaching a number of fitness goals in a short amount of time. Rowing can absolutely be your go-to workout to target a variety of goals, and can be your central fitness tool without really missing out on any fitness areas.
The compound effect of working both the upper and lower body when utilising proper rowing technique means you expand a greater amount of overall energy in your workout. This makes them extremely effective at increasing intensity, and ensuring you’re always maximising the exertion of each exercise.
This is great news for those looking to lose some weight, as weight loss is all about increasing the energy you exert.
While there are many fantastic tools out there to help with weight loss, such as treadmills or spin bikes, rowing machines will maximise your calorie-burning potential. The great thing about rowing is that you don’t necessarily need to increase speed to see maximum benefits. Rowing is more about the power and force that you can apply. It will be more focused on how hard your muscles are working to keep you moving and in a stable position.
Working the Core
One of the great advantages of rowing exercises is that you’re always working the core on both the drive forward and pull back. Your core and abdominal muscles will receive focused work as they are forced to stabilise your body throughout constant motion.
So is a rowing machine good exercise? Once you’ve nailed your technique and worked rowing into your regular workout, you’ll find that it will be hugely beneficial regardless of your fitness goals. Once relegated to the back of the gym and thought of as a boutique device for only a particular type of trainer, rowing machines are enjoying a surge in popularity as more users discover the benefits and advantages of rowing exercises.
Speak to our friendly staff today and we’ll get you started on your fitness journey.