Thanks to the advent of CrossFit and the outbreak of specialized workout studios in cities around the world, rowing is becoming quite popular as one of the best ways to get a satisfying cardio and toning workout.
However, unlike using a treadmill, where you just have to jump on and run or pedal away on a stationary bike, using a rowing machine takes some time to get used to get results or get used to the entire system. Considering this fact, how do you use a rowing machine?
First of all, strap your feet to the machine’s foot pads so they won’t be everywhere while you use the rowing machine. Make sure your feet are firmly flat on the foot bed and strap them securely but comfortably.
Start your strokes by adjusting your knees up and reaching for the handlebar of the rowing machine. This step is known in rowing as “catch.”
While in this position, your torso should also be slightly forward and over your legs to make it easier to row. You should also keep your spine straight as you get into this position.
In rowing, your legs are essential to get everything rolling. When in the catch position, the next step you need to do is use your hamstrings and push off from the footplate to get moving.
Make sure that your arms and your upper body are still in the first position when you are doing this step.
The next thing you need to do is get your core in line. Once you get your liftoff, lean backward at a 45-degree angle and pull the handlebar towards you, up to the point it is hitting your chest, just below your upper chest. Bend your elbows to help you pull the handle close to your chest.
Now head on to the “finish” phase, where you put your shoulder blades together and feel how your core muscles are holding you at a certain angle that is slightly tilted.
Slowly, ease back to the catch position by extending your arms forward, then follow it up with your torso while bending your knees. As you go back to this position, you should be pushing your legs close to the top of the machine to make this your first completed stroke.
To make rowing easier and more comfortable, here are some tips and reminders.