When building our current garage gym, there was one piece of equipment that I knew I couldn’t go without. Though not the cheapest, it is definitely worth the investment. This is the “Rowing Machine”. Now, I only really have experience with the brand Concept 2, so that is the one that I’m referring to. Other brands may have some good ones out there, but I do believe Concept 2 is pretty fantastic.
All in all, you could call this a total body workout. But don’t be fooled. This machine will slaughter your legs and glutes the most when you’re capable of putting together a hard rowing workout. Rowing burns 10-15% more calories than cycling at the same level of exertion. This is because the rower involves more muscles than most other sports or exercises. The primary muscles worked are the quadriceps, hamstrings and gluteals, but the shoulders, back and arms also get in on the action. Rowing is a great core workout because the abdominals are engaged throughout the entire motion. It’s great because you can mix it in with heavy lifting, part of a circuit, create an entire workout of rowing, or just go for a personal best time in one of the distances (500m, 1000m, etc). There is a list on Concept 2’s website that lets you compare your time to those around the world based on your age and weight.
Another appealing feature is that it is low-impact. You just need to be able to bend your knees. For those with injuries or special circumstances preventing them from doing anything impactful, make the rower your best friend! Lastly, this machine is almost always open at your local gym! Why? Most people just don’t know how to use it or create a beneficial workout on it (again, this is where you come see me). Don’t wait in line for the elliptical machine or the treadmill, hop on the rower. The screen has several different settings to choose from. You can row for time, row for meters, setup an interval workout, see how many approximate calories you are burning, view your wattage, or play the fun fishing game that is built into the computer. The possibilities are endless! Introduce yourself to the rowing machine and watch your world open up.
Happy Hump Day!