Rowing machines have fast been emerging as an excellent way to exercise more than just your legs, in fact all the major muscle groups get a complete workout on a rowing machine!
Getting the most complete workout you can obtain on an exercise machine is what you’ll get on a rowing machine, which uses upper body strength in shoulder and back regions to draw back the oars. Rowing machines are one of the few pieces of gym equipment that exercise practically every single muscle group you have, where you can easily control how much you want to work each muscle - perfect for providing an excellent cardiovascular workout and strengthening your arms, back, shoulders and abdominal muscles, thereby improving strength and cardiovascular fitness.
In addition rowing machines are relatively cheap to buy starting at prices around 100 to 200 USD, although more advanced rowing machines are just a tad more expensive and can cost a few thousand dollars, depending on your choice.
Rowing machines are designed to imitate actual boat rowing on the water, you’ll enjoy the experience of rowing in a scull on the open water in your own home. They’re typically over 6-feet long, although the indoor type often have the ability to be folded away, making them compact and easily stored under a bed or couch, while not in use.
As one of the most user friendly pieces of fitness equipment, rowing machines are easy to use, simply sit on the seat and ‘row’ back and forth pulling the handle as you go. Your knees should be bent when you are nearest to the rowing machine’s base and straight as you move back with the rowing stroke, they should remain slightly bent at the furthest point of the stroke and you should keep your back straight at all times.
Other advantages are that resistance can be adjusted to build muscle and burn calories. Serious rowers will benefit better from air or water resistance, both of which are controlled entirely by stroke rate, while resistance can be increased if you want to build muscle and will help burn a lot of calories, the average user burning around 690 calories an hour at 25 strokes a minute. Setting the tempo up to 40 strokes a minute can increase the caloric burn to an incredible 1,095 calories an hour.
Hydraulic piston type rowing machines are a good alternative if you are on a budget or your space is limited. These units are usually more compact than the flywheel models. Hydraulic technology has advanced a great deal in recent years, giving a smooth and reliable rowing experience, while providing a consistent level of resistance.
Indoor rowing is also widely used by competitive outdoor rowers and for crossing training by athletes from other sports. Indoor rowing competitions have become very popular in a wide variety of settings. Schools across the UK and other countries hold indoor rowing competitions as part of their training and conditioning exercises.
Rowing machines are well known for their efficiency in improving back and shoulder muscles and also provide a great workout to the thighs, calves and gluteus body areas.
Resistance equipment is a really good compliment to any home gym, both you and your family will benefit from exercising with a rowing machine.
Please note: Before starting new exercises or exercising with a rowing machine or other fitness equipment, consult with your physician to make sure that this type of exercise is suitable for you.
I teach a indoor rowing class at BAIR ISLAND AQUATIC CENTER in Redwood City. It is called "Rowbics". I one hour work out on the ergometer with emphasis on using the equipment properly core leg arm and back workout with cardio and stretching. We (Nora C) and myself row there as well. We have learn to row classes on the water beginnning in April.
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