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How to Incorporate the Rower into Your Workout Routine


In and out of the gym, cardio work is a staple in most workout routines. Whether it is running, swimming, or any other form of cardio, everyone can agree on the positive effects of a consistent cardio routine. The list of benefits is lengthy but includes lower blood sugar levels, strengthens immune response, aids in sleep, and most importantly improves your cardiovascular (heart) health!  

Save Your Joints

Rowers are a very low impact alternative to traditional cardio. Even though the benefits outweigh the side effects, other forms of cardio can be rough on the joints if repeated enough times. Rowing offers the same benefits as other forms of cardio such as running, hiking, and  while keeping the impact on your body low. It also can be used to rehabilitate while recovering from certain injuries. 

Perfect for All Ages

From young to old, rowing can be an amazing option to add into your workout routine. Rowing intensity can vary from high to low to create a great workout for any age. Staying active as you age can be crucial for improving longevity. Any low impact exercise, such as rowing, can benefit your overall health. Starting from a young age is also a great way to build healthy habits around being active and prioritizing your health. Every age can benefit from adding the rower into your routine as long as proper form is maintained.  

Getting Started on the Rowing Machine

Before you add rowing to your fitness routine, it’s important to understand proper rowing form. There’s an order of operations for movement that goes: legs, core, arms. Push off from the foot pedals, then engage your core as you bring your arms to your chest and back to legs, as you return to a bent leg position. Most of the power will come from your legs as you push and drive with your lower body and pull away from the base of the machine. But don’t worry, rowers work the whole body! However, without actively engaging the core while the legs are driving from the footplate, power is dramatically lost so make sure to keep your core tight as you row. For a full rowing tutorial and 21-day plan, head to our rowing guide! 

Rowing and Strength Training

Rowing makes a great addition to any strength training plan. Most strength plans now incorporate some cardio workouts, in which the resistance is lighter. Since rowing uses around 85% of the muscles in your body, it provides an effective and efficient way to alleviate some of the soreness associated with strength training. Heavy resistance can create joint soreness, which can then be amplified by high impact cardio exercises such as running or jogging. 

Mixing in a Rowing Workout

Give it a try! If you already have cardio in your exercise routine, try swapping out the treadmill or spin bike with rowing for a day and see how you feel! If you are looking to get back into a cardio routine or are working out after taking some time off, starting small can be a great way to ease back into your fitness journey. 

Looking for a  Rowing Workout? Let’s Go! 

We put together a few rowing workouts that you can do anywhere! Well, anywhere that there’s a rowing machine. Whether you are looking to warm up, get a quick cardio workout, or you’re working on building endurance, we have something for you!

Warm Up Rowing Set

  • 100 Meter Row
  • 10 Jumping Jacks
  • 200 Meter Row
  • 20 Squats
  • 500 Meter Row 

15-Minute Rower Cardio 

This 15-minute interval style workout will get your heart rate high! Make sure to set realistic paces to get the most out of it! 

Set Three Rowing Paces depending on experience 

Base – Something you could do for 20 Minutes without stopping

Push – Something you could do for 3-5 minutes without stopping 

Sprint – Something you could do for 30 seconds to 1 minute without stopping

  • 1 Minute at Base Pace
  • 1 Minute at Push Pace (1:00)
  • 1 minute at Base Pace (2:00)
  • 30-Second Sprint Pace(3:00)
  • 1 Minute Recovery  (3:30)
  • 1 Minute at Base Pace (4:30)
  • 2 Minute Push Pace (5:30)
  • 90-Second Base Pace (7:30)
  • 1 Minute Sprint Pace (9:00)
  • 1 Minute Recovery (10:00)
  • 1 Minute Base Pace (11:00)
  • 1 Minute Push Pace (12:00)
  • 1 Minute Base Pace (13:00)
  • 1 Minute Sprint Pace (14:00)

Endurance Rowing Workout

This workout gives ranges for the distances to be completed. Make sure you pick distances that match your fitness level!

  • Warm Up 
  • 500-600 meter Row 
    • Challenging, but doable pace
  • 1 Minute Rest
  • 800-1200 Meter Row 
    • Shoot for this to be slightly faster pace than the previous row
  • 1 Minute Rest
  • 500-600 Meter Row
    • Try to make this your fastest pace yet, leaving some gas in the tank
  • 1 Minute Rest
  • 1500-2000 Meter Row
    • This is the BIG one of this workout! Challenge yourself!
  • 2 Minutes Rest
  • 500-600 Meter Row 
    • Goal is to match the time from your previous 500-600 Meter row
  • 1 Minute Rest 
  • 800-1200 Meter Row
    • Last row of the workout, this is where you empty the tank
  • Cool Down Row – 500 Meters
    • Should be at a slow pace that allows you to catch your breath 



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