Benefits Of A Rowing Machine – Can It Give You A Solid Home Workout?

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By Leslie Waterson

Reviewed by Juliana Tamayo, MS, RDN - Last Updated

Benefits Of A Rowing Machine

Finding the right piece of home gym equipment can be tricky. Do you go with a treadmill, like the Treadly 2? How about a StairMaster? Maybe an elliptical? With so many pieces of equipment to choose from, you might be a little lost when it comes to picking one out.

One of the most popular pieces of gym equipment, though, is the Rowing Machine. Also known as ergs or ergometers, these machines are loved due to the ability to use up to 86 percent of your muscles, from the chest, triceps down to the core.

From the stationary to the exclusive rowing machines for sale on the internet, it can be pretty surprising to learn how similar these are to one another. While there are machines that are better quality than others, they typically have the same impact on your body and muscles.

Choosing an exercise program that works for you and your fitness goal can be confusing and tiresome. There are so many different programs to choose from, various machines, and even methods of working out. That’s why it’s always best to start safe and find proven to work gym equipment and the style of training you prefer.

If you are in the market for a new machine, a rowing machine is a great choice! It effectively boosts your muscular endurance, promotes muscle growth, and even has tons of benefits to your lungs and heart.

In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at what are the benefits of a rowing machine are as well as the different types that we recommend. 

Rowing Machine

What Is A Stationary Rowing Machine?

Stationary Rowing Machine or Indoor Rowing Machine is a type of workout equipment that stimulates the action of “rowing.” This type of exercise can be done indoors and is considered a great aerobic exercise that targets 70 percent of lower body muscles and 30 percent of the upper body muscles.

This is why a lot of people love using the rowing machine – it is incredibly effective in toning down your body while making it a great cardio exercise alternative to treadmills or elliptical machines.

There are four types of Rowing machines namely; Hydraulic Rowers, Flywheel Rowers, Magnetic Resistance Indoor Rowers, and WaterRower. 

Stationary Rowing Machine

Benefits Of A Rowing Machine

1. Provides a full body workout while minimizing your risk of injury

The rowing machine is known to activate 86 percent of your body’s muscles. These are highly required to properly and fully move the rowing machine. Not only that, but the rowing machine is highly effective in targeting major muscle groups in your body such as your legs, arms, your core, and the back.

Overtime with muscle activation, the natural process of bodybuilding goes on making your muscles stronger and bigger. This makes the rowing machine a true strength builder without the actual risk of injuries!

2. Burns more calories than most forms of exercise and helps you burn fat in a sustainable way

Using the rowing machine can be incredibly effective in promoting fat loss because rowing specifically doubles the amount of heart rate promoting thermogenesis.

Not only that, but rowing requires a great deal of working out your concentric muscle movements, this is the type of muscle activation that builds more mass and strength.

People who reported a daily and continuous use of a stationary rowing machine significantly dropped 5-10 kg in just 16 weeks, this is great news especially for people who are trying an effective and efficient way to burn down their fat.

3. Help improve your posture

Rowing has been studied and proven to improve back posture over time with continuous use. This is especially true for women because women are often not training their upper bodies enough which results in a hunched back appearance.

This hinged back appearance worsens as you age and as you continue making improper lifestyle choices such as being not mindful of your posture at the day to day work, sleeping with thick pillows, and improper sitting.

But worry no more! Rowing without slouching and over compressing which means that while performing the row you should be able to be upright straight as you pull can potentially alleviate your hunched back appearance.

Aside from straightening your posture you also provide your back relief from back pain and other problems because as said before Rowing does target the back muscles helping it to become more strong.

4. Improves Cardiovascular and lung health

Rowing is also considered to be a cardio exercise because it strengthens the cardiovascular system further promoting heart longevity. This is mainly responsible for the transportation of oxygen and other vital nutrients essential for growth and survival.

Whether it is a low intensity or high-intensity workout using a stationary rowing machine it can be incredibly beneficial to the heart and lungs as they work more efficiently while doing these exercises.

Rowing has also been proved to reduce cardiovascular diseases by up to 60 percent. More reasons for why you should row and row all your way to fitness!

5. Improves and Strengthens your Immune System

Rowing is incredibly effective in making your immune system more effective in fighting foreign bacteria and viruses. 

Generally exercising boosts your overall immune system but because Rowing is low risk but can be high intensity, it strengthens your immune system to a superb level.

This can be traced back to the fact that rowing is an incredible aerobic exercise that releases endorphins that directly affect the immune system. This is also great because it effectively boosts your overall mood.

6. Builds muscles in your legs, abs, and glutes

This is mostly because of the movement that is done during the act of Rowing which stimulates more these muscle areas, the key to effectively target these muscles is by having the right posture and pulling it in an upright manner.

Top Rowing Machines

Hydrow Rower

Hydrow Rower

One of the top tier rowers on the market, this Hydrow Rower is known for its beautiful design, fluency, and long-term use. It is definitely the most attractive looking rower on the market, so if this is important to you, this might be a great choice. It also includes access to their rowing classes that users rave about. 


The Best Foldable Rower Under $399

The Best Foldable Rower Under $399

The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute calls this the best foldable rower under $399 because of its smooth gliding. When compared to other rowers at the same price point, they determined this one provided the best experience both short-term and long-term. 


Nordic Track RW 500

Nordic Track RW 500

One of the most popular workout equipment companies on the market, Nordic Track is known for its high quality products. The price might be higher than some, but these products are known for lasting forever. 


Schwinn – Crewmaster Rower 

Schwinn - Crewmaster Rower

This model is moderately priced and well-reviewed. The seat and steel rail provide a smooth gliding motion that create a good experience for any rower, no matter their level of practice.


Final Verdict: Rowing Machines

Always remember that to keep good posture while using a rowing machine. If you don’t focus on posture, it can lead to long-term harm which ultimately can do you more harm than good. If not properly handled, improper rowing can lead to excessive lower back pain which may cause you to restrain your workouts.

Always remember to have the proper form while working out, it is also best to seek your gym trainer’s advice before Actively Rowing.

Overall the use of the Rowing machine can properly activate all your muscles thereby improving your physique while giving you other benefits such as increased heart and lung health, better mood, better posture, and more energy levels. We definitely recommend giving this type of workout a try. 

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Leslie Waterson

Leslie has been passionately involved in the health and fitness industries for over a decade. She is constantly reviewing the latest scientific research and studies in order to take a research-backed approach to lifestyle optimization. Her main areas of interest include nutrition and supplementation. Leslie shares her findings on Fitness Clone to help other health enthusiasts choose the products and routines that will help them achieve their goals.