Sun. Jun 2nd, 2024
How To Use Rowing Machine: Step-by-step Guide For Beginners

A rowing machine, also known as a rower machine, simulates the movements of rowing and is excellent for a full-body workout. You can increase your aerobic fitness by using a rowing machine for a low-impact cardio workout. Additionally, it tones your entire body and strengthens your muscles.

Many gyms have rowing machines, which are convenient to use. A rowing machine is also a flexible exercise option because it is easier to transport than a treadmill or an elliptical.

What is a Rowing Machine?

To simulate rowing motions indoors, use a rowing machine. A seat and a foot bar with straps to secure your feet are located on one end of the apparatus. The flywheel at the machine’s front is connected to the handle by a cable. You can move a rowing machine around your home with ease because it weighs a lot less than a treadmill or an elliptical.

An aerobic and strength workout is both possible on a rowing machine. It is a low-impact exercise as well, which makes it ideal for people who want to avoid overworking their joints. You can use a rowing machine exclusively or combine it with other exercises for a complete workout. It can be utilized, for instance, as a circuit in high-intensity interval training (HIIT).

Rowing Terms

Strokes Per Minute

How many rows (strokes) are completed in a minute is as follows. Davi suggests keeping this number at 30 or lower. Remember: It’s not just about jerking your body around; it’s about power.

Split Time

This is how long it takes to row 500 meters or about a third of a mile. Try to keep it to no more than two minutes. Don’t just pump your arms faster; push out with more force to quicken your pace.

Benefits of the Rowing Machine

Improved Aerobic and Muscle Strength

Strengthening muscles and increasing cardiovascular endurance are two benefits of indoor rowing. Your muscles are stressed as you row repeatedly, which encourages the development of stronger muscle fibers. To effectively use oxygen, you also use your muscles and lungs.

Improved Muscle and Joint Mobility

When compared to other cardiovascular exercises, rowing puts less strain on your joints because of its low impact. Additionally, it necessitates a broad range of motion, which promotes flexibility and lessens joint stiffness.

Promotes Healthy Body Composition

Rowing is primarily an aerobic sport that aids in effective calorie burning.

Reduced Stress

The rowing stroke’s steady, rhythmic motion has a calming effect that can aid in lowering stress.

How To Use Rowing Machine: Step-by-step Guide For Beginners

Step-by-step Guide

Step 1: Catch

Your shins should be roughly vertical as you sit tall on the rowing machine with your arms straight, back straight, and knees and ankles flexed. From here, tighten your core and pull your shoulders down using your lats. Your lower back will be better protected by this interaction. Maintaining a tall posture, then lean forward slightly.

Step 2: Drive

While keeping your core tight and braced, start pushing with your legs. Lean back approximately 45 degrees with your legs straight and your hips hinged. The final motion is pulling the handle towards your torso from a few inches above your belly button. Take note of the order of the body’s motions: legs, core, hips and shoulders, and arms.

Step 3: Finish

Although you won’t rest here for very long, this is the resting position across from the catch position. Legs are long, shoulders and back are angled away from the legs, hands (and handle) are drawn inward toward the body, and elbows are tucked in toward the torso.

Step 4: Recover

To get back to the catch position, execute the drive movements in the opposite order. Bend the knees after extending the arms and bringing the torso over the legs by hinging the hips forward.

Common Rowing Machine Mistakes

Failing to Use Your Core During the Drive

Check that your core is engaged before pushing back with your legs. Otherwise, you end up making the motion with your hips rather than your legs.

Rounding through the Back

Slumping forward and rounding through the back, which strains the back and shoulders, is another issue. Try sitting straight instead, with your spine neutral. For good posture, while rowing, you can also concentrate on using your core muscles.

Bending the Knees First During Recovery

You can establish a steady rhythm by performing the recovery movement in the correct order (arms, hips, torso, and then knees). The timing and effectiveness of the move are altered by bending the knees first.

How To Use Rowing Machine: Step-by-step Guide For Beginners

Rowing Machine Workouts

You can use a rowing machine in your workouts in a variety of ways. Exercises involving a rowing machine can be timed, distance–typically in meters–measured, or stroke–counted. HIIT classes can also include rowing exercises.

Usually, rowing machines have a resistance setting that ranges from 1 to 10. You will experience more resistance the higher the number. Make sure to adjust the resistance to the proper level prior to your workout. Rowing for five minutes at a moderate pace while paying close attention to your form will help you warm up. Three to five minutes of easy rowing to cool down should follow each rowing workout.

Start with five to ten minutes of work at a time if you’re using the rowing machine for the first time. When you feel more at ease using the rowing machine, start extending your workout by three to five minutes at a time, up to 30 minutes.

You could also give pyramid exercises a shot. You perform short bursts of exercise, followed by a relaxing period of recovery, in this type of workout. Up until you reach your maximum, each work interval is longer, farther, or comprised of more strokes. Then you start to get smaller with each interval until you get back to where you started.

Who Shouldn’t Use Rowing Machines?

Not everyone should use the rowing machine. If you experience any kind of lower back pain or an injury, make sure to consult a doctor first. According to scientific studies, using a rowing machine after suffering a lumbar spine injury may make things worse or even make things worse.

Researchers found that rowers with lower back pain or injuries perform the exercise with a more pronounced back rotation and with a less effective core movement. In turn, this might aggravate lower back issues.

Summary: Take Precautions

Speak to your doctor before starting any new exercise regimen, including rowing. Take extra precautions and make sure you’re using proper form when using the rowing machine if you have any history of lower back pain or injuries. Try something else if your provider says rowing might not be the best activity for you. When it comes to fitness, there are numerous options.