The rowing machine, unlike treadmills and exercise bikes, does not enjoy much popularity. Most likely, the reason is that it is more difficult to train on it. Nevertheless, every year this sporting equipment is becoming more popular, which is due to its wide functionality. With the help of a rowing machine, you can bring your body in good shape and lose weight. Today we will find out how to choose him so that he will become a reliable assistant in home training.

Why do I need a rowing machine?

What muscles work? Studies show that rowing is inferior to the number of involved muscle groups only ski races. Competently training on the rowing machine, you can use 82% of the muscles. It allows you to work almost the whole body: the shoulder belt, press, buttocks, back and legs. It all depends on the technique of execution.

How to choose a rowing machine: types and designs

In the modern world, when every minute counts, the versatility of simulators is especially valuable. Another great advantage of such devices is the development of endurance, as well as the training of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems. Rowing motions, for all its effectiveness, are gentle, therefore suitable for almost any person. The exception is unless people with back problems.

What is it?

The basic design of the rowing machine consists of a seat, a handle, a frame and a flywheel. Classes on it are very close to rowing on the boat: the athlete goes down the rake, and then returns to the starting position with the help of the legs, back and shoulder girdle. Electronics, which are equipped with modern models, allows you to measure the pulse, calories spent and other indicators.

Misconceptions about the rowing machine

  1. Training on the rowing machine is mainly developed by the hands. As you already know, it is not. If desired, you can load, for example, only the back or legs only. If you perform a standard comprehensive exercise, which, in principle, and calculated the exerciser, the load will be distributed evenly.
  2. Training is contraindicated for people suffering from diseases of the spine. In some cases, exercise is not contraindicated. Here, again, it all depends on technology. If you want you can make it so that the spine will be loaded only slightly. If in doubt about the security of the simulator for your back, consult a doctor.
  3. The simulator mainly develops endurance. Endurance is really practiced, but not less than coordination and muscles.
  4. The simulator is aimed at a set of muscle mass, not weight loss. Of course, exercise rowing machine is not as effective for weight loss as running, however it allows you to burn quite a lot of calories (about 800 calories through intense workout). Actually, this lesson is recommended for people with a medium degree of obesity and those who suffer from high blood pressure.

A rowing machine can have two types of traction: Scandinavian and central. Scandinavian (it's Latin) is as close as possible to classical academic rowing. It allows you to use mainly the muscles of the back. It is believed that this type of traction is more suitable for experienced athletes.

Central traction is good for home lessons. It gives an opportunity to work out the body in a complex way and bring it into a tonus.

By design, rowing machines are mechanical and magnetic. We will analyze each of the species.

Mechanical simulator

In terms of price, this is the most affordable rowing machine. Load on the muscles is created with the help of a number of constructive solutions:

  • levers;
  • hydraulic cylinders;
  • blades that resist air.

The resistance force in each of the variants can be adjusted manually. When working, the simulator creates a lot of noise. Many models are equipped with a fan simulating a headwind. The mechanical unit can not provide a smooth movement and loads the muscles less efficiently, in comparison with the magnetic analog.

In general, one can distinguish such advantages of a mechanical model:

  1. Low cost.
  2. Simple construction.
  3. Does not require electricity.
  1. High noise level.
  2. Limited functionality.
  3. Limited smoothness of movements.

Magnetic simulator

This type is electronically controlled and allows you to smoothly vary the load without stopping the session. Such simulators, as a rule, do not rustle and are equipped with electronics for controlling calorie consumption, pulse rate and load level. Due to the smoothness and large amplitude of the movement, the simulator allows you to work out the muscles well, having performed the average amount of work.

The main advantages of this type:

  1. Wide functionality.
  2. Smooth running.
  3. Wide range of adjustments.
  1. High price.
  2. Necessity in power supply.
  3. Large size.

What to look for when choosing?

Choosing a rowing machine, it is worth considering these points:

  1. Compactness. A rowing machine is a great choice for home workout, but he has impressive length. Some models are suitable for vertical storage that is a great solution for small apartments. There are folding options that are more solid but much more convenient in terms of storage. However, the compact model has a length of about 1.3 m and a width of about 0.4 m. Picking up the simulator in size, it is worth considering that it needs not only to fit into the interior, but also to fit the physiological parameters of the exercising.
  2. Adjustment. Ease of training depends on the position of an emphasis for feet and arms, and seat height. It is desirable that the stops coincide with the size of the foot. But if the unit is purchased for the whole family, you should pay attention to models with adjustable pedals.
  3. Frame construction. If the area your home allows you to purchase a machine with a solid metal frame and seat on an aluminum basis, it is recommended to choose this option. It will serve reliably for many years. In General, before buying need to sit on the simulator and check that it does not bend under your weight.
  4. Transmission. From its quality depends on your comfort level with boating. To choose such cables and chains that will not create discomfort during exercise. The simulator should work without unnecessary tension and with a good return when accelerating. Everything must be predictable. If motion is intermittent, and load is constantly fluctuating, it is not necessary to spend money on a model.
  5. Load regulation.  Simulators can additionally have the function of a step change in the load. Such models allow you to optimize the heart rate and create optimal conditions for muscle tone.
  6. Console. Almost every model of modern rowing machine has built-in console. It allows you to configure the session, to track current performance and to keep them. It can help to know about the time of exercise, its intensity, the distance traveled, number of strokes and calories burned.
  7. Heart rate measurement. Indicators such as pulse rate, is very important for a successful workout. Many modern rowing machines can be measured with high accuracy. There are models in which the pulse sensors are built into the handle. However, more accurate data provide the trainers with a wireless chest sensor – cardiospasm. Wired devices that are attached to the ear, are less sure.
  8. The seat.  It should be such that even prolonged training does not cause unpleasant sensations. The seat base must be practical and quality, like the guide frame.
  9. Power supply.  For mechanical simulators and models with built-in DC generator, power is not provided. In other cases, it is worth considering how you will connect the simulator.

It is impossible to say unequivocally which rowing machines are better. Here everything depends on the individual preferences of the buyer. Let's get acquainted with several well-known models.

The main advantage of this model is the unique system of aerodynamic resistance. It depends on the intensity of the strokes. All the main parameters of the session are displayed on a convenient monitor. The frame, made of extruded aluminum with a coating of stainless steel, with a light weight has good strength characteristics. Rowing simulator Concept 2 is quickly disassembled, which allows to significantly reduce the storage area. The price of the model is about 1500 dollars.

Kettler Favorit

Kettler Favorit rowing machine has a mechanical load system with a hydraulic drive and is equipped with a display on which all the main parameters of the training are displayed. The hydraulic system smoothly and steplessly loads the trainer, with the ability to adjust the degree of force. The sensor-clip allows you to measure the heart rate with acceptable accuracy. Such a simulator costs about $ 400.

Torneo Golfstream

This is a good model for beginners. It is simple and compact. A large number of adjustments allows you to engage in a simulator for people of different builds. The main advantage of the Torneo Golfstream rowing machines is the low price (about $ 200). It causes the main drawback - the quality of assembly and components. To simulator worked well, it needs to be slightly modified. The first thing to do is replace the wooden seat base.

How to train

So, now that you know how to choose a rowing machine for your home, let's look at the basic principles of training on such an assembly.

  1. Start the lesson with a little speed and resistance. The average pace of the initial stage is 20-25 strokes per minute.
  2. Do not strain any one muscle groups and try to row only with it (if working out this group is not your main goal), the load should be distributed evenly.
  3. Do not strain your joints. The knee joint is most affected.
  4. Do not bend forward with the strokes.
  5. Movement should be smooth, without any jerks and sudden stops.
  6. And, of course, do not overwork!


Today we learned what a rowing machine is, what muscles work in rowing and how to choose the right model. Simulators every year become more serious in terms of technology and more universal - in the practical. Therefore, it is difficult to single out the best rowing machine for the home. Here everything depends on the personal wishes of each person.