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How to use a rowing machine, the benefits, and the workouts to try

When you’re at the gym, do you walk right next to the rowing machine? You shouldn’t do that because it’s a very effective piece of equipment. It builds strength and improves aerobic fitness, making it a great all-rounder. It’s also easy to use once you learn the right technique. Oh, and contrary to what you’ve heard, it doesn’t give you an overly developed upper body, it just gives you a strong upper body. What are you going to love?

What are the advantages?

A rowing machine session delivers a lot and trains up to 85% of your muscles including your legs, back, arms, shoulders and core. At the same time, it develops suitable aerobic exercise, for example, when taking a break from running due to an overuse injury. And when it comes to fat burning, it’s one of the best exercises you can do. Harvard Health found that 30 minutes of moderate adjustment can burn up to 210 calories for a 125-pound person and 294 calories for a 185-pound person. (With a drastic adjustment, these numbers increase to 255 and 440 calories, respectively). And because it’s a low-impact activity, strenuous exercise is less likely to cause injury.

Another benefit is that you can go as hard or as light as you like. As your fitness improves, you can increase your exercise level, for example by targeting a specific distance at a set time. Seeing these digital displays is a significant incentive. Who doesn’t want to beat the clock? And you can customize your sessions and challenge yourself in different ways by performing bodyweight exercises like squats between your efforts. Of course, you can also just sit back, relax and, if you like it, you can imagine rowing in the lazy river for a long time. Resist the urge to whistle.

man using a rowing machine

(Credit: Getty/Thomas Barwick)

How to use the rowing machine

First of all, using a rowing machine isn’t primarily an upper body exercise as it may seem, and the word “row” suggests that the arms are in charge. Instead, your glutes, core, and upper body should do the rest while your legs do most of the work. (The group American Fitness Professionals and Associates states that when using a rowing machine, strokes are 65-75% footwork and 25-35% upper body exercise.)

Pulling too early with your arms instead of using your large leg muscles to press is a form mistake many people make early on. Pelé Zachariah, head of performance at Rowbots (find Rowbots on social here), said other common mistakes in technique include reaching for a catch (first step of the shot, see below), leaning too much at the end of the shot, and trying to recover. Ignores slow slips. Here he explains good rowing machine skills.

Step 1: Catch

Sit up straight, pull your shoulders back, relax and tighten your core. Keep your arms long and your hips slightly behind your shoulders.

Step 2: Drive

In this step, use all the strength of your legs to explodingly push the footrest. Keep your arms straight for as long as possible, with your legs fully extended and your hips slightly bent (about 11 o’clock from your torso), pull the handle toward your chest.

Step 3: Finish

You have to keep your posture. At this point, you should lean back slightly. Release your hands quickly as soon as they touch your chest and do not bend your knees until your hands have passed the knee joint when you return.

Step 4: Recovery

After the hands have released their knees, slowly begin to slide back to the catch position, at which point the cycle begins again.

rowing machine workout

Next time you go to the gym, try one of these Rowbots-designed workouts. There is something for every ability and fitness level.

1. Time-limited training

This 20-minute explosion requires you to jump off the rower and then come back up again.

Beginner: 200m row, 8 push-ups, 16 air squats (weight squat)

middle: 350m row, 12 push-ups, 24 squats

Progressive: 500m row, 16 push-ups, 32 squats

Find the flow and move at a constant speed from start to finish. Keep similar split times for each coordination effort. Complete as many laps as possible before you get to the point where you gasp “No more!” Anyway, nobody listens.

2. Recovery training

Paddle at a pace you feel comfortable with for 20-60 minutes (depending on your fitness level). Complement your leisurely paddle movements by listening to a podcast or music (easy with BPM!). You fall into the groove and you lose yourself.

3. Interval training

500m row

60 second break

Perform 8-12 rounds

This will test your physical and mental strength, so be prepared to feel the burn and ignore your brain when you scream that you’ve had enough. Set a goal time for the first 500m and aim to hit that time with every effort thereafter. Perform all 8 rounds for beginners, 10 rounds for intermediates, and 12 rounds for advanced users.

4. Low-intensity training

One of the great things about rowing machines is that you can customize almost any workout to suit your fitness level or experience level. This session is ideal for those new to the gym or those who haven’t worked out in a while.

1 min: 40 sec low / 20 sec rest

2 minutes: Elbow plank 40 seconds / rest 20 seconds

3 minutes: 40 second row / 20 second break

4 minutes: repeat after rest

Aim for round 6, but feel free to increase or decrease it depending on your fitness level and skill level.

Looking for more educational inspiration? Here are the best treadmill workouts for runners of all skill levels and the best Stepmaster workouts you can try in the gym.


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How to use a rowing machine, the benefits, and the workouts to try

Do you walk right past the rowing machine when you’re in the gym? You really shouldn’t, because it’s a remarkably effective piece of equipment — it builds strength, improves your aerobic fitness, and is a great all-over workout. It’s also easy to use, once you have learned the right technique. Oh, and contrary to what you may have heard, it does not give you an overdeveloped upper body — just a strong one. What’s not to love? 
What are the benefits? 
A rowing machine session delivers a lot, working up to 85% of your muscles, including your legs, back, arms, shoulders, and core. At the same time, it also develops the kind of cardio fitness that will stand to you if you are taking a break from, say, running because of an overuse injury. And when it comes to burning fat, it’s one of the best workouts you can do: Harvard Health found that a 125-pound person can burn up to 210 calories with 30 minutes of moderate rowing and a 185-pound person can burn 294 calories (with vigorous rowing, those numbers rise to 255 calories and 440 calories, respectively). Furthermore, because it’s a low-impact activity, you are very unlikely to sustain an injury even if you do an intense workout. 
Another benefit is that you can go as hard or as easy as you like, so as your fitness improves you can up your effort level by, for example, aiming for a specific distance in a set time – watching that digital readout is quite an incentive. Who doesn’t want to beat the clock? And you can adapt a session and challenge yourself in other ways by doing body-weight exercises, such as squats, between efforts. Of course, you can also just sit in, switch off and imagine yourself rowing for a long time along a lazy river, if the mood takes you. Resist the urge to whistle.

(Image credit: Getty/Thomas Barwick)
How to a rowing machine
First off, using a rowing machine is not primarily an upper-body exercise, though it may look like one, and the word ‘rowing’ suggests your arms are in charge. Instead, your legs should be doing most of the work, with your glutes, core, and upper body doing the rest. (The organization American Fitness Professionals and Associates says the rowing stroke when using a rowing machine is 65-75% leg work and 25-35% upper bodywork.) 
Pulling too early with your arms rather than using your big leg muscles to push is a form error many people make early on. Pelé Zachariah, head of performance at Rowbots (find Rowbots on social here), says other common mistakes in technique include overreaching at the catch (the first phase of the stroke; see below), leaning too far away at the back of the stroke, and neglecting the slow slide for recovery. Here, he outlines good rowing machine technique:
Phase 1: The Catch 
Sit tall, engaging your core, with your shoulders back and relaxed. Keep your arms long and your hips slightly behind your shoulders. 
Phase 2: The Drive 
This phase utilizes the full force of your legs to explosively push away through the footplates. Keep your arms straight for as long as possible, only pulling the handle toward your chest once your legs are fully extended and your hips are slightly hinged (to roughly an 11 o’clock position from your upper body).
Phase 3: The Finish
Be sure to maintain postural integrity — you should have only a slight backward lean at this point. Release your hands quickly once they have touched your chest and only bend at the knees when your hands have passed the knee joint on the return. 
Phase 4: The Recovery 
Once your hands have cleared your knees, initiate a slow slide to return to the catch position, at which point the cycle begins again.
Rowing-machine workouts
Next time you’re in the gym, try one of these Rowbots-designed workouts. There’s something for all abilities and levels of fitness. 
1. Time-constrained workout
You will need to jump off and back onto the rower for this 20-minute blast.
Beginner: 200m row, 8 push-ups, 16 air squats (body-weight squats)
Intermediate: 350m row, 12 push-ups, 24 air squats
Advanced: 500m row, 16 push-ups, 32 air squats
Find your flow and move at a consistent pace from start to finish. Aim to hold similar split times on each rowing effort. Do as many rounds as possible before you reach the point where you’re gasping ‘No more!’. No one is listening, anyway.
2. Recovery workout 
Row from 20-60 minutes (depending on your fitness level) at a pace that feels comfortable. Listen to a podcast or some music (easy on those bpms!) to complement the leisurely rowing action. Get into a groove and lose yourself.
3. Interval workout
500m row
60 seconds’ rest
Do 8-12 rounds
This one will test your physical and mental strength, so get ready to feel the burn and ignore your brain when it screams that you’ve had enough. Set a target time for your first 500m and try to hit that time with each subsequent effort. Do eight rounds if you’re a beginner, 10 if you are intermediate and all 12 if you are advanced.
4. Low-intensity workout
One of the greatest things about the rower is that you can adapt almost any workout to suit your level of fitness or experience. This session is ideal for someone who is new to the gym or has not trained for a while.
Minute 1: 40-second row / 20 seconds’ rest
Minute 2: 40-second elbow plank / 20 seconds’ rest
Minute 3: 40-second row / 20 seconds’ rest
Minute 4: Rest and then repeat
Aim for six rounds, but feel free to scale this up or down depending on your fitness level and ability.
Looking for more workout inspiration? Here are the best treadmill workouts for all levels of runner, and the best Stairmaster workouts to try in the gym. 

#rowing #machine #benefits #workouts

How to use a rowing machine, the benefits, and the workouts to try

Do you walk right past the rowing machine when you’re in the gym? You really shouldn’t, because it’s a remarkably effective piece of equipment — it builds strength, improves your aerobic fitness, and is a great all-over workout. It’s also easy to use, once you have learned the right technique. Oh, and contrary to what you may have heard, it does not give you an overdeveloped upper body — just a strong one. What’s not to love? 
What are the benefits? 
A rowing machine session delivers a lot, working up to 85% of your muscles, including your legs, back, arms, shoulders, and core. At the same time, it also develops the kind of cardio fitness that will stand to you if you are taking a break from, say, running because of an overuse injury. And when it comes to burning fat, it’s one of the best workouts you can do: Harvard Health found that a 125-pound person can burn up to 210 calories with 30 minutes of moderate rowing and a 185-pound person can burn 294 calories (with vigorous rowing, those numbers rise to 255 calories and 440 calories, respectively). Furthermore, because it’s a low-impact activity, you are very unlikely to sustain an injury even if you do an intense workout. 
Another benefit is that you can go as hard or as easy as you like, so as your fitness improves you can up your effort level by, for example, aiming for a specific distance in a set time – watching that digital readout is quite an incentive. Who doesn’t want to beat the clock? And you can adapt a session and challenge yourself in other ways by doing body-weight exercises, such as squats, between efforts. Of course, you can also just sit in, switch off and imagine yourself rowing for a long time along a lazy river, if the mood takes you. Resist the urge to whistle.

(Image credit: Getty/Thomas Barwick)
How to a rowing machine
First off, using a rowing machine is not primarily an upper-body exercise, though it may look like one, and the word ‘rowing’ suggests your arms are in charge. Instead, your legs should be doing most of the work, with your glutes, core, and upper body doing the rest. (The organization American Fitness Professionals and Associates says the rowing stroke when using a rowing machine is 65-75% leg work and 25-35% upper bodywork.) 
Pulling too early with your arms rather than using your big leg muscles to push is a form error many people make early on. Pelé Zachariah, head of performance at Rowbots (find Rowbots on social here), says other common mistakes in technique include overreaching at the catch (the first phase of the stroke; see below), leaning too far away at the back of the stroke, and neglecting the slow slide for recovery. Here, he outlines good rowing machine technique:
Phase 1: The Catch 
Sit tall, engaging your core, with your shoulders back and relaxed. Keep your arms long and your hips slightly behind your shoulders. 
Phase 2: The Drive 
This phase utilizes the full force of your legs to explosively push away through the footplates. Keep your arms straight for as long as possible, only pulling the handle toward your chest once your legs are fully extended and your hips are slightly hinged (to roughly an 11 o’clock position from your upper body).
Phase 3: The Finish
Be sure to maintain postural integrity — you should have only a slight backward lean at this point. Release your hands quickly once they have touched your chest and only bend at the knees when your hands have passed the knee joint on the return. 
Phase 4: The Recovery 
Once your hands have cleared your knees, initiate a slow slide to return to the catch position, at which point the cycle begins again.
Rowing-machine workouts
Next time you’re in the gym, try one of these Rowbots-designed workouts. There’s something for all abilities and levels of fitness. 
1. Time-constrained workout
You will need to jump off and back onto the rower for this 20-minute blast.
Beginner: 200m row, 8 push-ups, 16 air squats (body-weight squats)
Intermediate: 350m row, 12 push-ups, 24 air squats
Advanced: 500m row, 16 push-ups, 32 air squats
Find your flow and move at a consistent pace from start to finish. Aim to hold similar split times on each rowing effort. Do as many rounds as possible before you reach the point where you’re gasping ‘No more!’. No one is listening, anyway.
2. Recovery workout 
Row from 20-60 minutes (depending on your fitness level) at a pace that feels comfortable. Listen to a podcast or some music (easy on those bpms!) to complement the leisurely rowing action. Get into a groove and lose yourself.
3. Interval workout
500m row
60 seconds’ rest
Do 8-12 rounds
This one will test your physical and mental strength, so get ready to feel the burn and ignore your brain when it screams that you’ve had enough. Set a target time for your first 500m and try to hit that time with each subsequent effort. Do eight rounds if you’re a beginner, 10 if you are intermediate and all 12 if you are advanced.
4. Low-intensity workout
One of the greatest things about the rower is that you can adapt almost any workout to suit your level of fitness or experience. This session is ideal for someone who is new to the gym or has not trained for a while.
Minute 1: 40-second row / 20 seconds’ rest
Minute 2: 40-second elbow plank / 20 seconds’ rest
Minute 3: 40-second row / 20 seconds’ rest
Minute 4: Rest and then repeat
Aim for six rounds, but feel free to scale this up or down depending on your fitness level and ability.
Looking for more workout inspiration? Here are the best treadmill workouts for all levels of runner, and the best Stairmaster workouts to try in the gym. 

#rowing #machine #benefits #workouts


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