20 Amazing Rowing Benefits, According to Science

Have you tried loads of different workouts in the quest to get fit and in shape only to find you're bored with the latest exercise fad within a week? If this sounds familiar then maybe you need to go back to basics.

People often make the mistake thinking fitness equals long-distance runs with a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. Or only the latest gear and technology will help you achieve your goals. But we’ve got a little secret we want to share with you. While people queue to use the treadmill, the ellipticals, and the exercise bikes, we suggest you walk on over to the unused rowing machine in the corner and get fit, fast!

You see, the good old rowing machine, together with a little motivation and a healthy dose of determination will you have feeling stronger and looking better in no time at all.

The rowing machine goes back a long way, in fact approximately 2,500 years ago where the ancient Greeks used it to prepare for war. And in 1871, when men wore top hats and ladies wore bustiers, William (Bill) Curtis patented the very first indoor type.

Today there are four different types of rowers to choose from but the fact remains the same, rowing is a great form of exercise for people of all ages and all fitness, and it comes with a whole lot of benefits.

1.Rowing Burns (a lot of) Calories

While it might not look like it, rowing burns a whole lot of calories, around 377 in 30 minutes. Or let's put it this way, competitive rowers use up almost twice as many calories over 2,000 meters as runners burn up during a 3,000-meter steeplechase. If you’re wanting to shed a few pounds, it might be worth giving rowing a chance.

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2.Rowing Reduces Stress

Do yourself a favor. After a stressful day at the office, or at home, grab your rowing machine and do a quick 30-minute workout. Physical activity, like rowing, helps produce endorphins, the feel-good chemicals in your brain. These don’t only act like a natural painkiller, they also help you sleep better and make you feel better. Regular sessions on your rowing machine will lift your mood, decrease tension and even improve your self-esteem.

3.Rowing Creates a Healthy Balance

Rowing can create a healthy balance, and no, we don’t mean work-life balance. Rowing maintains a healthy balance between fat-free mass and fat mass in your body. If your body fat is high, rowing is an excellent way to burn it off.

4.Rowing Makes Your Heart Healthy

And who doesn’t want a healthy heart? Rowing is a cardiovascular exercise, which increases your lungs’ ability to provide oxygen to the heart, blood as well as the rest of your body. Studies Rowing enhances your lung’s ability to provide oxygen to the blood, heart and the rest of your body. A lack of exercise is linked to a number of illnesses, including heart disease but the good news is that it doesn’t need to be long, tedious sessions. A 30-minute workout of steady exercise on a rowing machine is all you need.

5.Rowing Tones Your Muscles

Rowing works almost every muscle group (and probably some you didn’t even know you had). While a lot of exercises target specific areas and muscle groups, a rowing machine works your legs, your bum, and hips. You also strengthen your back, arms, and shoulders along with your trunk and core. And this all happens with very little stress or pressure on your muscles and joints, which means no more “strain and pain equals gain” mantras.

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6.Rowing Strengthens Your Core

Rowing makes your core stronger by working the neutralizer and stabilizer muscles. These are the same muscles that stop you falling over (who knew) and prevents you injuring your back when you pick up something heavy.

7.Rowing Shows Results Quickly

Of all the exercises there aren’t many that will show results as quickly as rowing. Regular sessions will see you losing weight fast, especially if you do high-intensity interval training. So, instead of rowing for 60 minutes at the same pace every day, it’s better to do 20 minutes of rowing every day, alternating one minute of easy rowing with one minute of hard rowing.

8.Rowing Improves Your Flexibility and Mobility

If you’re looking for an exercise that increases flexibility then you need to give the rowing machine a try.  A 20 to 30-minute session of moderate rowing will loosen joints and muscles, and reduce stiffness.

9.Rowing is a Low Impact Exercise

Rowing is one of the safest sports around because it is considered to be low-impact. When it’s done properly, rowing uses a fluid motion with very little to no chance of being injured, unlike high-impact exercises.

10.Rowing Makes You Stronger

Rowing is a great way to get stronger. It works the quadriceps, which are the muscles in the front of your thighs. As these muscles get stronger you’ll be able to increase the types of activities you do, including running, squats and lunges.

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11.Rowing is Good Training for All Sorts of Sports

Regardless of the sport you do, you’ll benefit from rowing as part of your training. Because it works so many muscle groups, it strengthens and tones arms, shoulders, legs and your back. From swimming and weightlifting to running and tennis, rowing will help your training.

12.Rowing Machines are Easy to Use

Have you ever walked into a gym and felt overwhelmed by all the different types of equipment? Or even worse, started on a machine only to be told halfway in you’re back to front and upside down? A rowing machine is easy to use from setting it up to doing the actual exercise.

13.Rowing is a Feel-Good Exercise

We know exercising releases endorphins, those feel-good hormones, which helps relieve stress but rowing does even more. Because it requires a rhythmic movement rowing is relaxing, almost like dancing, and if you pop your headphones on you’ll find yourself in “the zone”.

14.Rowing is Good for Arthritis and Osteoarthritis

For anyone who suffers from osteoarthritis or arthritis, rowing is an excellent way to stay in shape. It’s also good for you if you’re recovering from an injury or battling with other aches and pains. A rowing machine will help you strengthen your joints, and increase mobility without causing more damage.

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15.It’s Convenient

Rowing is one of the most convenient exercises around, even if you don’t live anywhere near water. Most gyms have a rowing machine or two, or if you prefer, you can buy one that can be used at home. There are even fold up models that can be stored under your bed for easy access.

16.It’s Affordable

Obviously, if money isn’t an issue there are some amazing high-end rowing machines available, but you can also find budget-friendly ones that won’t break the bank. When it comes to rowing, you also don’t need expensive clothing or state-of-the-art technology.

17.Rowing is Good For Everyone

Rowing is one of the few exercises that doesn’t discriminate. No matter how old you are, what you weigh, what your fitness level is or whether you’re recovering from an injury, anyone and everyone can row. A rowing machine’s resistance can be adjusted to suit you, which means beginners right through to seasoned sportspeople can use it. Also, older people can exercise quite comfortably on a rower, improving and maintaining their overall health.

18.Rowing Doesn’t Need Much Motivation

For a lot of people getting motivated is sometimes harder than the workout itself, which is why experts recommend exercising first thing in the morning. Having an easy-to-use rowing machine in your home that takes very little time to set up means there are no excuses to not exercise.

19. Rowing is Good for Pregnancy

A rowing machine can safely be used during pregnancy, as long as you do it properly. It’s recommended that you keep the resistance at a level you feel comfortable with and that you take it slowly. Remember to warm up and cool down afterward, and make sure it’s a comfortable 20 to 30-minute session

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20.Most Importantly, Rowing is Lots of Fun

One of the easiest ways to stay motivated when it comes to exercising is by finding an activity you enjoy. Rowing can be done while you’re watching TV, reading a book or listening to your favorite tunes. It’s fun and depending on the mood you’re in or how much energy you’ve got, you can make it an easy session or a hard one.

So there you have it. 20 amazing rowing machine benefits, according to science, and pretty much everyone else who has ever tried it.