The closure of gyms due to pandemic restrictions have hit the workout crowd hard. What was once a regular routine has now become sporadic at best or completely eliminated at worst. But maybe some of the exercises you used to do at the gym could be performed just as well or better at home. Rowing might be one of those. Is rowing the best home workout? In this article, we’ll find out.
Choosing A Home Based Exercise Machine
If you were a regular at the gym, you’re probably not the only one who’s wondered if it might be time to invest in an exercise machine for the home. The sales of home-based health and fitness equipment have skyrocketed during the “lost year” of 2020. But with so many different styles, models, and brands to choose from it can be difficult to know which machine will be the best buy. Treadmills and stationary bikes are popular, well-known machines, but you might be surprised to find out that it’s the rowing machine that can give you the most bang for your buck.
The Full Body Workout
The strongest argument for the rowing machine is that it will give your entire body a good workout. The same can’t be said for treadmills or bikes. A rowing machine can involve 80% or more of the muscles in your body. Every stroke will engage lower body muscles such as the calves, the quads, the hamstrings, and the glutes, move into the abs, the pecs, the obliques, the deltoids, the lats, and upper back, and finally to the biceps and triceps. No other exercise machine can incorporate all those muscles in one single, fluid motion.
Cardio, Endurance and Strength
The rowing machine is unique in that it will not only build up your cardiovascular health and endurance but can also be used to build muscle strength. When the rowing machine resistance is reduced you can go for speed which will raise your heart and breathing rates. Done for long periods of time your endurance will be extended. If you’re looking to build muscle you can increase the resistance on the machine and get a strength workout that can rival hitting the weights.
A Low Impact Workout
Spending too much time jogging on the treadmill can spell pain for your feet, shins, and knees – especially on cheaper models that aren’t well cushioned. The rowing machine, on the other hand, encourages long, smooth motions with virtually no impact whatsoever. If you already have problems with your joints, you understand the benefits of a low-impact exercise. The rowing machine affords you a full-body workout without repetitive motion strain.
A Meditative State
Rowing isn’t a mindless exercise. There’s a technique involved to incorporate the rhythmic motion required to row efficiently. This technique requires concentration and mindfulness which can bring you into a meditative state. One of the reasons why many of us exercise is to improve our mental wellbeing. The consolidation of physical and mental effort that rowing brings about is not only great for the body but also good for the mind.
A Compact Machine
While there are other full-body exercise machines on the market, they often involve several stations built around a central structure. As a result, they have a massive footprint. And while this might be okay in a public gym, it may not be so conducive to apartment living. The rowing machine, on the other hand, is quite streamlined. Long and narrow, it can fit discreetly in most rooms that are still being used for other purposes. Some rowing machines can even be folded up and stored away when not in use.