The Benefits Of Rowing Machines
Rowing machines are one of the few home cardio machines that give you a solid upper body workout while still burning an impressive number of calories. When you add to this that they also place very little strain on your joints, strengthen your core and more, they can definitely be a valuable addition to your home workout collection. In this article I’m going to be focusing on rowing machines and discussing their main benefits in greater detail.
1) Effective Upper Body Workout
The main benefit of buying a rowing machine is that it focuses on your upper body. Most cardio machines such as exercise bikes, treadmills and steppers all focus on your lower body and leave your arms, back and chest with little to do. Elliptical machines are slightly better and do engage your upper body but they don’t challenge it significantly.
However, rowing machines are different and fully utilize your arms, back and chest with every stroke you take. Just a few weeks of regular rowing machine use can significantly improve the strength and tone of your upper body. This is particularly beneficial if you play sports that require good upper body strength, such as baseball or tennis, as the regular rowing will help you develop a stronger pitch, swing, serve or shot.
2) Effective Lower Body Workout
Although rowing machines are one of the only cardio machines to give you an effective upper body workout, that doesn’t mean they neglect your lower body. Every stroke requires you to push off from the platform with as much power as possible using your legs and this helps to develop strength, power and stamina in your lower body. If you’re looking for a cardio machine that will strengthen and tone your legs at the same time as working your upper body and improving your cardiovascular fitness, there are very few that do it better than a rowing machine.
3) Full Range Of Motion
Another great thing about rowing machines is that they allow you to move through a full range of motion as you exercise. Many cardio machines limit your range of motion and this can cause you to become inflexible or weak in certain areas of your body.
For example, elliptical machines don’t allow you to fully stretch your arms or legs when you use them. Over time this can cause your legs and arms to tighten up and also cause certain muscle groups to get neglected when you workout.
By using a rowing machine you can avoid these problems, as both your arms and legs fully bend and extend with every stroke. This ensures that they stay flexible and also ensures every single part of your arms and legs gets a full workout.
4) Core Conditioning
As well as giving you a challenging upper and lower body workout, rowing machines are also a great way to strengthen your core muscles. Very few other cardio machines engage your core muscles, so if you want six pack abs or a strong lower back when using these machines, you have to do separate core work. However, since there’s no lower back support on the seat of a rowing machine, your core muscles have to work constantly to keep your back straight and keep you in an upright position as you row.
The best part is that the core workout you get from rowing is much more effective than the core workout you get from doing specific abdominal or lower back work because instead of engaging the core muscles in short bursts, you engage them constantly. For example, if you do 100 sit-ups, you’ll probably engage your abdominal muscles for 2 minutes in total. However, if you do 30 minutes of rowing, you’ll be strengthening and toning your abdominal muscles and lower back muscles for the full 30 minutes.
5) Zero Impact Cardio
One final benefit of rowing machines is that they’re a zero impact cardio machine and place no pressure on your joints. If you have problems with your ankles, hips and knees and have found treadmill running too intensive, rowing are a gentle but effective alternative. Rowing will still burn the calories and boost your fitness but it won’t cause pain in your joints.
As you can see, rowing machines are a fantastic home workout option that challenge all areas of your body without placing any pressure on your joints. I hope these rowing machine benefits have helped you make your final decision as to whether this is the right piece of home workout equipment for you. Good luck and happy shopping.