Features of choosing a rowing machine

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Features of choosing a rowing machine
Features of choosing a rowing machine

Find out the main myths about the rowing machine and what types of such machines are, how to choose exactly what you need for home training. If exercise bikes and treadmills are very popular among domestic fitness fans, then this cannot be said about a rowing machine. Probably, it's all about the lack of information about him and rather hard training. Not everyone knows that among all aerobic simulators, this one has one very valuable advantage - the ability to quickly put the body in order. Let's find out How to choose a rowing machine.

Should you buy a rowing machine?

The girl is engaged on a rowing machine

In the course of scientific research, it was found that in terms of the number of muscles involved in the work, the rowing machine is second only to cross-country skiing. Thus, during training on this type of sports equipment, the athlete uses more than 80 percent of the muscles of the body. It is also necessary to note the positive effect of the simulator on the work of the respiratory and cardiovascular systems.

Thanks to the rowing machine, you can carry out a complete training of the muscles of the arms and back. Since rowing movements do not imply negative stress on the joints, the simulator can be used by people of all ages. The only contraindication in this case is back problems. We recommend that you undergo a complete medical examination before purchasing a rowing machine.

What is a rowing machine?

Rowing machine side view

A rowing machine is a device that consists of a frame, a flywheel, a seat and a handle. The training process on it is as close as possible to rowing movements in a boat. During training, the athlete lowers with the seat down the guide rail, and then performs a push with his legs and returns to the starting position. Some machines are equipped with fans to simulate wind gusts. The heart rate measurement is carried out thanks to the built-in sensor.

Top rowing machine myths

The guy is engaged on a rowing machine in the fresh air

Rowing workouts predominantly strengthen the arm muscles

In practice, everything is completely different and the simulator considered today allows you to work out the muscles of the back, abdomen, legs, shoulder girdle and buttocks. This type of sports equipment allows you to evenly distribute the load if the movements are performed correctly. Since this is a rather difficult simulator from the point of view of mastering, we recommend that you contact an instructor for help.

You cannot use the rowing machine if you have problems with the spinal column

If you correctly draw up a training plan and master the technique of performing movements, then the load will be evenly distributed over all the muscles of the body. Since the back muscles in this situation will be of secondary importance, the load on the spinal column will be minimal.

The rowing machine can mainly increase endurance

During training, endurance increases significantly, but this is just one of the advantages of the rowing machine. Perhaps from the outside it seems that the classes are very simple, but in practice, the athlete is required to maximize concentration and coordination of all movements.

The rowing machine is more effective for gaining mass, rather than losing weight

According to the results of scientific research, in one hour of training on this simulator, you can burn about 800 calories. Fitness experts recommend using the rowing machine even for moderately obese people.

Types of rowing machines

Two girls and a guy are engaged on rowing machines

Rowing machines can be classified according to design (magnetic versus mechanical) and thrust type (central versus Scandinavian). Let's talk about each of these types in more detail.

Scandinavian cravings

Nordic Rowing Machine

Allows you to bring the training process as close as possible to rowing. This type of traction allows you to actively use the muscles of the back, but makes serious demands on the technique of performing movements. Scandinavian deadlift equipment is primarily intended for professional athletes.

Central thrust

The guy works on a rowing machine with a central rod

It is this type of traction that is most often used in home exercise machines. As a result, you will be able to harmoniously develop all the muscles in your body.

Mechanical rowing machine

The guy is engaged on a mechanical rowing machine

These are the most affordable simulators in terms of cost. The muscle load is created through the use of various design solutions:

  1. Thanks to the resistance of the hydraulic cylinders, while creating a strong resemblance to real rowing on a boat.
  2. Using the length of the levers.
  3. Thanks to the air blades, allowing for a relatively high quality of movement, but at the same time creating additional noise.

Whichever design is used on the machine, the load can be manually adjusted. Mechanical rowing machines are not only distinguished by an increased noise level in comparison with magnetic ones, but they are also not able to provide high smoothness of movements and maximize muscle load. Of the positive qualities of this type of sports equipment, we note:

  • Low cost.
  • Simplicity of design.
  • No need to use an eclectic network for power supply.

The disadvantages include:

  • Lack of fluidity of movement.
  • Increased noise level.
  • Limited functionality.

Electric and magnetic rowing machines

Magnetic rowing machine on white background

The simulator is electronically controlled, which allows you to smoothly adjust the level of load in a wide range directly during exercise. Most of these simulators are silent and offer the ability to control the heart rate.

Since the smoothness of movements is at a high level, the muscles are better worked out. Let's note the main advantages of magnetic rowing machines:

  • Great functionality.
  • Allows you to make the movements as smooth as possible.
  • The load can be adjusted without interrupting the activity.

Among the shortcomings, one can only point out the high cost of equipment, as well as large dimensions.

How to choose the right rowing machine?

The girl is engaged on a rowing machine on a white background

Let's answer the main question of today's article and find out how to choose a rowing machine.

  1. Equipment dimensions. Despite popular belief about the large size of rowing machines, home models are often the most compact of all sports equipment. Moreover, some of them can even be stored upright, which is extremely convenient when there is a shortage of free space in the room. Folding models have a higher cost, and one-piece installation requires about two square meters of floor space. If you want to know how to choose a rowing machine, then be sure to consider the parameters of all the people who will be working on it.
  2. Adjustment. The comfort of the lesson largely depends on this. Models that have the ability to adjust the seat height, as well as the position of the rowing arms and footrests, are much more convenient to use. If you are going to train alone, then it is quite possible to choose a simulator without the possibility of adjustment, while paying attention to the footrests, the dimensions of which should correspond to the size of the feet. Otherwise, it is better to purchase equipment with adjustable pedals.
  3. Frame. If your room has sufficient space, we recommend that you pay attention to simulators with a solid frame made of metal.When buying equipment, be sure to sit on it. To ensure the strength of the structure.
  4. Transmission. Give preference to models equipped with chains and cables. Able to create a comfortable feeling. During training, they should not work without excessive stretching or weak recoil when accelerating.
  5. The quality of the movements. Be sure to check the quality of movement on the simulator. They should be soft and without a sharp drop in resistance.
  6. Load control. All rowing machines, according to the method of changing the load, can be divided into stepless and stepped. The first type of sports equipment also involves the ability to monitor the heart rate.
  7. Console. Most modern rowing machines have a built-in console. This provides you with the opportunity not only to optimize the training process and receive information about the current state of affairs, but also to save the training results for further detailed study. Among the information received, we will single out the time spent on the lesson, the distance covered, the number of strokes, as well as the calories burned.
  8. Measuring heart rate. For all exercises to be as effective as possible, you need to monitor your heart rate throughout your workout. Some trainers have sensors built into the handlebars, but wireless chest straps provide the most accurate information. Also, some models have clip-on sensors on the earlobe, but their readings are not entirely accurate.
  9. Seat. You should feel comfortable while exercising and a lot of credit goes to the seat. When choosing equipment, be sure to check that the seat moves freely in any direction.
  10. Power supply. If you want to purchase a mechanical trainer, then feel free to skip this step. If not, check the length of the cord and the required mains voltage.

Useful Rowing Tips

A man is engaged in a rowing machine in the gym

As you know how to choose a rowing machine, there are a few tips for training with this type of exercise equipment:

  1. Start at a medium pace, doing 20 to 25 strokes over one minute. At the same time, you should not immediately put up a lot of resistance.
  2. During training, the back should not be tense so that the main load falls on the muscles of the thigh and buttocks.
  3. Perform all movements as smoothly as possible, avoiding jerks.
  4. Do not strain your knee joints.
  5. If you feel very tired, take a rest. A workout consisting of several sets of rest breaks can also be very effective.

It is quite obvious that you can get positive results only through regular exercise. For the body to start the lipolysis processes, the duration of the workout should be about one hour. Sporting goods stores have a smaller selection of rowing machines compared to the same treadmills. But at the same time, you will always have a choice, and you will definitely find a trainer for your tasks. In conclusion, we note that any sports equipment, first of all, should provide maximum comfort during exercise.

And here is a video with useful information about training on the rowing machine:

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