The Kick-Butt Workout You Aren’t Doing

Fitness: Workouts

By: // December 18, 2015

Tired of the elliptical? Bored with the treadmill? Confused with where to go in the weight room? Maybe its time to make your way over to the one machine in the gym you haven’t tried. It’s time for you to try indoor rowing! Indoor rowing is on the rise and for good reason. Rowing is a full-body workout that uses all your major muscle groups and gives you killer cardio to boot! No wonder rowing has become the latest trend not only with trainers and their clients, but as a group fitness workout too! There are so many benefits to indoor rowing.

Why Try Indoor Rowing?

  • Rowing is for everyone! Rowing is an exercise that can be done by all ages, body types and fitness levels from beginners to professional athletes
  • Rowing is low impact. Good, solid, low-impact workouts are difficult to come by. This will probably be your favorite.
  • Rowing is simple. Indoor rowing is a very easy exercise to learn. Most people can learn in just a few minutes.
  • Rowing is a full-body exercise. Most people wrongly believe that rowing is an upper body exercise. Not true. In addition to biceps, triceps, shoulders and back, rowing also works your glutes, quads, hamstrings and core. In fact, done properly, 60% of the pull comes from the legs, 20% comes from the core and 20% comes from the upper body. Plus, don’t forget about the awesome cardio benefits!
  • Rowing is a big calorie burn. It stands to reason that when you engage that many muscles, you use a bunch of energy. Energy equals calories burned. A 160-pound person will burn about 250 calories in just 30 minutes.

Related: 4 Best Ways To Burn Mega Calories

Before you jump onto a rowing machine and start to pull, there are a few tips you should know to help you perform the exercise properly, avoid injury, and get the most from your workout every time you sit down. Here are some things to consider.

6 Tips For Your Best Rowing Workout

  1. Rowing is a full body exercise. Initiate the movement from your legs. 60% of the movement should come from your legs, 20% from the core, and 20% of your upper body—in that order. Make sure to begin the movement you’re your legs and follow through with the rest.
  2. Core is king. Though only 20% of your work comes from your core, that is a crucial 20%. It is extremely important that you watch you posture, keep your back long, your shoulders down, and abs pulled in tightly. TRAINER’S TIP: Exhale as you exert the force to pull.
  3. Handle alignment matters. When you pull the handle to your body it should end up just below your chest. Initiate the pull with your upper back and latissimus dorsi and be sure to engage the proper muscles.
  4. Do your intervals! Interval training is a proven way to burn more fat and calories as well as get fit more quickly. Interval training on the rowing machine is as simple as on any other machine. Go hard for a period of time followed by a period of rest. You could row for distance, time or calories burned in your interval, depending on what you prefer.
  5. Cross-train. As with all activities, it’s good to mix up the way you work out. Use the rowing machine as part of your entire fitness plan. It’s still important to fit in time to strength train and build up your core. This will all enhance your rowing technique and make you more efficient.
  6. Use the power of people. Spinning alone on an indoor cycle can get long and boring. Jumping into a spin class, however, suddenly pumps up the energy in a whole new way. The same goes for indoor rowing. Find a partner or group to do it with, or better yet, if you can find an indoor rowing studio and jump into a class, you might just become an indoor rowing addict!

Check out this helpful video to see a step-by-step tutorial on how to row:

READ THIS NEXT: 3 Elliptical Workouts For Weight Loss

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on June 1, 2017 at 10:06 AM Reply

I think this is a creative workout with a machine in the house, I usually practice at the gym, sometimes rowing to strengthen my biceps muscles. Thank you for suggesting this home gym. Chester.

on November 12, 2016 at 1:24 PM Reply

This is a great video, thank you. Great tips and advice

on October 22, 2016 at 1:52 PM Reply

Very informative site, so many interesting and new. Thank you for your work!!!

on August 30, 2016 at 1:07 AM Reply

Rowing machines really great for daily workouts, it's effect on full body parts, your post really nice, Thank you for share :)

on June 22, 2016 at 8:26 PM Reply

Do these tips hold true for rowing exercise with resistance bands?

    on June 30, 2016 at 9:31 PM Reply

    Well - cardio rowing machines are a little different - they really keep your heart rate up and are powered by air or water. Rowing with resistance bands is still a great workout but just not the same motion… rowing machines involve the whole body:)

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