A Guide To Training On The Rowing Machine

If you’ve ever seen the rowing in the gym and have not tried it yet, now is the perfect opportunity to try it! However, there’s also the chance that if you’re using it, you’re using it the wrong way as well. Rowing machines provide one of the most efficient workouts that you’re ever going to partake in.

When you use the rowing machine, you’ll get a full-body workout that builds muscular strength and builds your aerobic endurance. However, most people simply lack the technique as well as training. Most of the time, persons even damage themselves while they’re working hard. Read on as we dive into everything you need to know about the rowing training.

If you’re planning to get the most out of your rowing session, you’ll need to incorporate rowing workouts into your regular routine properly. It’s also essential that you avoid mistakes from the get-go and remember to focus on the technical aspects even when you’re tired. Some machines are electric so be sure also to spend some time learning how to use it.

Proper Rowing Machine Techniques

Most of the experienced persons in the field make it look effortless to perform. However, rowing is complex and takes a lot of years to master. So, if you’re in the gym, it’s easier to catch on with the least amount of knowledge.


The beginning of your stroke is better known as the catch. During this position, you’ll need compression as you take the weight. A simple way to think of this is if you were in a boat and as the blades enter, you’ll need to catch the weight of the resistance.


In essence, your drive is your most basic rowing stroke. This means that you use your legs first, followed by your back and then your arms. Some of the most common mistakes people make are pulling with their arms before their legs come in.


The finish is the end of the stroke sequence. Your legs should be flat during this position, your shoulders should be behind your hips, and the handle should be positioned horizontally at the lower ribs.


During the recovery phase, you should remove your hands from your body while pivoting from your hips. This is done to ensure that the body is positioned forward. However, when you’re breaking the knees, be sure to roll up starting from the catch position.

Simply put, your movement should perfectly blend and not be too strenuous.

Body Posture

When it comes to the perfect posture, it’s best to keep in mind that you shouldn’t curve your back. As long as you remember this important piece of advice, you’ll easily save yourself from serious injuries, and you’ll be in a better position for the next stroke. However, it should be noted that even if you feel tired, don’t slouch and be sure to swing into the next stroke.

Common Rowing Machine Settings That You Should Know About

Resistance Setting

Most people often think that if they put the fan setting all the way up that they’re working out harder. However, this is the furthest thing from the truth. Industry experts advise that fan settings should never be above 3 or even 4. When you set the machine to anything above it, you’re putting unnecessary load on your body.

At the beginning of a stroke, persons are known for suffering from the most injuries when their fan setting is over 4. When the fan is set lower, it makes the workout more effective and it allows users to work on their momentum and their posture. It even allows them to build their resistance. Take a look at some of the best magnetic rowing machines if you want to have a great variance in resistance settings.


The split is often referred to as the time that it would take you to cover at least 500 meters if you’re able to maintain your split. If you’re able to hold a 1:45 split, it should take you roughly 1 minute and 45 seconds to cover a 500-meter distance.

When you use splits in your routine, it ensures that you’re able to see how you’re progressing. When you go on the select workout menu and then to a new workout, you’ll be able to put the different parameters that you’re working with. Within the menu settings, you’ll also have the option to insert your rest interval.

Navigating The Screen

Some of the newer models come pre-set with different options. Users get the options to choose which measurement or figures that they would like to see during workouts. The machine’s screen also allows them to see how many calories are being expended during a workout, and they’ll also be able to see the watts produced.

The console also displays the strokes that are being taken each minute. Both stroke and split have a completely inverse relationship. This just simply means that as your stroke increases, your rating should go down.

Rowing Machine Workouts

When it comes to actual rowing machine workouts, it’s very important to maintain a proper technique. This ensures that you’re warmed up and able to power through sessions with ease. Experts suggest that persons should start slow and add either two or a minimum of one during sessions. However, these are usually between 30 or 40 minutes per duration.

This allows persons to build, and it is recommended that it be done before strength training. During the rest period, you can simply take a paddle or two lightly, and it’s also advised that persons stand and stretch their legs while taking a small drink.

Power 20’s

This involves two sets with eight reps and at least 20 to 24 strokes each minute. However, at least 20 strokes should be taken as powerful as you can while maintaining the proper technique. After 20, 10 light strokes should be taken very light. This is counted as one rep.

Power strokes are rated at anywhere between 20 and 24 strokes for every minute. The objective of this workout should be to hold it as low as possible for the piece. However, light strokes should be taken between reps in order to regain posture and length. Don’t forget to take breaks that are no more than 6 minutes between your sets.

Row (1 Min On, 1 Min Off)

This workout involves three sets with five reps at rates between 18 to 26 with a plus 2 on each rep for each set. You should row for one minute and apply as much power and force as you can. This is followed by a one minute of lighter strokes and rest. This is considered as one rep.

Five reps should be completed with a short break before you move to the next set. In a similar fashion, your goal should be to hold the lowest split before the harder portions. Your first set should comprise of stroke rates from 18 to 26, the second should be from 20 to 28, and the third should be from 22 to 30.

1000 Meter Row

The 1000-meter row involves four sets with a 7 minute rest period between each set. While there isn’t a dedicated stroke rate for this workout, it’s very important to keep the full length during the slide. Remember not to scramble or shorten up because it will have negative impacts on your workout.

Shortening up can even affect your posture and the technique that you’re using. Simply put, your main target is to maintain the lowest average split that is possible. Competitive rowers are generally great for taking advantage of their resting period to ensure that each piece is high intensity.

8 Minute Row

The 8-minute row consists of 3 sets with 6 minutes of rest between each. During the first four minutes, a stroke rate should be maintained to at least 24, followed by 2 minutes at 26 and then the last two at 28. Unlike others, these are usually set in the middle with tons of rest between them.

Just like with others, you’ll want to take full advantage of the long rest period since each piece needs to be of the highest quality possible. So, keep in mind that as your step-up rates increase, your split should decrease.

10 Minute Row

Unlike the 8-minute row, this workout consists of just 3 minutes rest with 3 sets. The first three minutes should be set to 20 with the following 4 minutes at a stroke rate of 22, and the remaining 3 minutes should consist of a stroke rate of 24. This workout revolves around increasing the intensity of your workouts while increasing the volume.

This ensures that your stamina and endurance improve while you complete the workout in just 10 minutes. However, this can be accomplished at a relatively steady pace. Since the rates are lowered, you’ll also need to focus heavily on your technique and posture while improving your stroke length.


As we conclude, we have just looked at the rowing machine. We’ve looked at the proper technique and some common things about the machine. Our article also features several workouts that can be incorporated into your regular regime!

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