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6 Rowing Machine Workouts

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Are you someone who enjoys both cardio and strength workouts but cannot participate in high-impact, fast-paced activities such as endurance running or high-intensity interval training? Are you looking for something to mix up your workout routine, make it more fun, and encourage your participation in daily exercise? 

Whether your reason for skipping gym workouts is related to joint pain, lack of workout variety, or even boredom in your routine, a rowing machine might be the answer you have been looking for! Not only is rowing a low-impact cardio workout, but it is a full-body exercise that will impact all muscles and strengthen the heart and lungs.

Have you ever considered switching things up, participating in something new, and broadening your workouts beyond your typical running or swimming routine? If so, the Ski-Row Air or the Ski-Row Air + PWR might be just what you are looking for! 

Our rowing machines provide a combination of workouts for the upper and lower body, cardio, and HIIT. The options with these machines are endless. 

Why Should I Participate in Rowing Workouts?

Rowing workouts have many benefits, especially when using the Ski-Row Air and Ski-Row Air + PWR. Here are just a few.

  1. Full-body Workout: You use 86% of your muscles when working with the rowing machine; it’s a full-body exercise. 
    Instead of thinking about the different exercises needed to target each muscle group, you can spend time on this one machine and benefit the entire body. Some of the major muscle groups that get a target workout from using a rowing machine include hips, glutes, calves and triceps.
  2. Appropriate for All Skill Levels: You do not have to reach a certain fitness level to participate in a rowing exercise. Whether you are a beginner or a professional rower, you can have fun with this workout!
  3. Low-Impact: Unlike running or jumping workouts, the rowing machine is low impact, so it is easier on the joints and doesn't require a long warm-up to prep. However, it is still shown to be high cardio and provide a sufficient calorie burn.
  4. Flexible: Rowing machines provide flexible workout options. Whether you want a five-minute workout or a 35-minute workout, this machine will increase your heart rate and provide good exercise.
  5. Good for Mental Health: There can be a meditative aspect to these workouts due to the sliding motion of the machine as well endorphins released.
  6. Alternative to Traditional Workout Machines: Rowing machines can be a good replacement for other total-body workout equipment or other gym equipment, such as the elliptical or treadmill, for many reasons. As discussed, the rowing machine provides a full-body workout instead of only lower bodywork, like other machines. It also provides a low impact exercise, can easily be folded up and stored away, and is an indoor workout option.  

The Importance of a Strong Body

Muscular strength is the capability to move and lift certain items. You may not realize just how often you use your muscles daily, hourly, or minute-by-minute. For example, the bicep muscles are used every time we lift something. 

This could include anything from pulling your jug of milk from the fridge to picking up your baby for a diaper change. We do not often consider how vital our muscles are and how important it is to work them out to maintain a strong and healthy body. 

A strong body does not only refer to your muscles, however. This also refers to a healthy heart and lungs. Since our rowing machines target all areas of the body, including the heart and lungs, this supports overall cardiac and respiratory health and encourages oxygen transport to your cells of the body. 

Here are six rowing machine workouts you can do with the Ski-Row Air and Ski-Row Air + PWR Machines: 

  • Bicep Curl
  • Arms-Only Row
  • High Row
  • Reverse Overhead Row
  • Single-Arm Row
  • Single-Leg Row  

1. Bicep Curl

The bicep curl increases strength in the upper part of the arm while keeping the abdominal muscles tight. This exercise was designed to work the arms more than the back.

  1. Sit in the seat of the rowing machine.
  2. With palms upward, grab the handle of the rowing machine.
  3. Drive out with the legs. 
  4. Bend your arms at the elbow as if doing a bicep curl while you pull the handles towards you.
  5. Repeat for as many reps as you feel capable of and increase reps as tolerated.

2. Arms Only Row

This exercise targets abdominal and upper body muscles and is a good workout for anyone who wants to look leaner overall. 

  1. Sit in the rowing machine seat with legs extended and back straight.
  2. Grasp handles and row with arms only.
  3. Do not move your legs or back in any way.
  4. Repeat for as many reps as you desire and increase reps as tolerated at your own pace.

3. High Row

This exercise works your upper back and shoulder muscles. 

  1. Sit in the seat with knees bent and hands grasping handles.
  2. As with a normal rowing exercise, extend the legs back and pull on the handles until your hands are high on your chest.
  3. Return back to the starting position.
  4. Repeat for as many reps as you feel capable of and increase reps as tolerated.

4. Reverse Overhead Row

This exercise was created to work the abdominal and shoulder muscles.

  1. Sit backward from how you normally would in the seat.
  2. Grab handles with both hands over your head.
  3. Lean forward and push arms over the head in a smooth motion.
  4. Return to the starting position. 
  5. Repeat for as many reps as you feel capable of and increase reps as tolerated.

5. Single Arm Row

This exercise targets the upper body muscles on one side of your body and should be done in equal amounts on both sides of the body. 

  1. Sit in the rowing machine seat with knees bent and single hand holding the middle of the handle. Rest the other hand to the side.
  2. Row as you would if using both hands, but ensure that your rowing hand ends at the side of the body.
  3. Return to the starting position.
  4. Repeat on the opposite side for as many reps as possible and increase reps as tolerated.

6. Single-Leg Row

Just as with the single-arm row, single-leg rowing is done to target the muscles on only one side of your body. 

  1. Sit in the rowing machine seat with one knee bent on the rowing machine and the other placed on the ground.
  2. Grasp handle with both hands and row as you normally would.
  3. Repeat on the opposite side for as many reps as possible and increase reps as tolerated.

Summing It Up

Not only are rowing machines a good choice for switching up your daily workout routine, but they provide a full-body workout with low impact if you are someone who struggles with joint pain and weakness. 

There are many exercises available with the Ski-Row Air and Ski-Row Air + PWR machines which give you the freedom to choose anything from targeting one muscle group to targeting all of them at once. This might be the new workout routine you have been looking for.

 

Sources:

7 Reasons Why You Should Mix Up Your Workouts

17 Benefits of Rowing Machine Workouts: Why It's Great for Your Health

How to Build Strength - A Year of Living Better Guides

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