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Health and Fitness News

Row Your Way to Weight Loss

Want to get serious about burning calories? It may be time to get in some rowing.

Looking for a simple cardio workout that burns serious calories and offers full-body strength-training? Look no further than rowing. Whether on the rowing machine at the gym, in a group fitness rowing class, or on a boat in the water, rowing is claimed by some to be the ideal workout.

Give rowing a try and judge for yourself. If you’re new to rowing, here’s why you should row and how to ensure you use proper form when rowing indoors.

Efficient and Effective

Rowing is an efficient exercise. Unlike most workouts, rowing has you working against resistance as you move forward and backward. It also offers full-body conditioning, meaning it works both upper and lower body major muscle groups so you can get the job done in less time. This is possible because each stroke involves muscles of the arms, shoulders, legs, glutes, back, chest, and core.

You may think it’s an easy exercise since you sit down the whole time, but don’t be fooled. Rowing is a highly effective cardio workout that gets your heart pumping and your breathing elevated in no time. Most workouts range between moderate and vigorous intensity to strengthen your heart, build and tone muscle, increase stamina, and get you in shape.

One benefit of a rowing workout is that it’s low-impact and safe for people with joint problems. Since you’re sitting, there’s no pounding your feet against a hard surface. The movements are natural, so you stay comfortable with no excessive pressure applied to any part of the body.

Many people are soothed by the repetitive sounds and movements of the rowing machine as it pushes you to keep moving back and forth, back and forth. Others prefer being out on the water, feeling the warmth of the sun, and feeling the cool breeze.

Either way, rowing is a win when it comes to your waistline. That’s because it gives you the opportunity to burn serious calories in a short amount of time. How many calories? A 150-pound person can expect to burn 281 calories with half an hour of vigorous rowing.

Stroke and Row

To get the most out of your workout and avoid injury, it’s important to row with proper form. Beginners should start slowly with short workouts focused on developing technique before dedicating a full workout to rowing.

To use a rowing machine, sit on the sliding seat, strap your feet onto the foot plates, and use your hands to hold onto the oar.

A rowing stroke involves smooth movement. Sit up, lean slightly back, keep your back straight, straighten your legs, hold onto the oar, and straighten your arms, which should be level with your lower ribs.

Now, prepare your body for the stroke. With your legs, back, and arms still straight, lean forward by bending at your hips. At this point, your hands should be past your knees.

Bend your knees until your shins are perpendicular to the floor. Then lean slightly forward, keeping your back and arms straight in front of you. This point is called the catch.

Push back with your legs and use your upper back to pull the oar toward your lower chest, bending your elbows to the sides but near your body, and leaning your upper body slightly back. Repeat the stroke by bending your legs while straightening your arms. When performing each stroke, it should take you twice as long to glide forward as it does to push back.