The Benefits of Rowing


The Benefits of Rowing

by | Mar 15, 2019

The Benefits of Rowing and Why This is One Exercise You Can’t Miss!

The Benefits of Rowing

Rowing has an apt nickname – “The Perfect Exercise.” While this phrasing may seem slightly excessive, we argue in today’s post that few other movements can replicate the numerous benefits of rowing

 We will dive into each benefit below, but as a quick introduction, rowing’s benefits accrue in a few ways. First and foremost, rowing is a massive calorie burner. Secondly, rowing is a total body workout, hitting 9 of 11 major muscle groups with each stroke. Third, rowing is low-impact. And fourth, rowing is easily scalable to meet your age and ability.

 All together, these benefits combine in a unique and amazing way.

Keep reading below to dive deeper into each of these separate (but related) rowing benefits.


Rowing Benefit 1: Calorie Torching

This is the name of the game, right? If you aren’t burning calories, you aren’t working. Good for us (and you!), rowing can burn up to 900 calories an hour!  Compared to the other major cardio exercises, rowing is heads and shoulders over the competition.

What makes rowing such a major calorie burner? We will discuss this more in benefit 2, but essentially rowing works the majority of your muscles on every stroke, without the help of gears. The more muscles used, the more calories burned. Add in the intense cardio component, and rowing is a calorie-torching king!


Rowing Benefit 2: Total Body Workout

Not only is rowing an amazing cardio exercise, but the second rowing benefit is that it targets 9 of 11 major muscle groups with each stroke (that’s about 90% of your body!), making it one of the most complete exercises available. 

While running and cycling focus almost entirely on the lower half of your body, rowing will require effort from head to toe (learn about proper rowing form HERE)! In fact, the power of your stroke is about 60% lower body, 20% core, and 20% arms. 

By utilizing so many muscles on each stroke, the effort requires an elevated calorie effort (see Benefit One) and is also a one-stop-shop for your fitness needs!


Rowing Benefit 3: Low-Impact

Rowing’s low-impact workout is one of its best features!  Rowing won’t leave your body feeling trashed after, and it is perfect for recovering from injury. Total Row’s water rowers provide a no impact workout that is easy on the joints. 

Many other exercises, running in particular, can often do more harm than good. If you are constantly needing to take time off from your training, at least consider adding rowing as a supplement. Here is a basic example to see how it can protect your body:

  • The average runner will take somewhere around 1,750 steps per mile (walkers are closer to 2,000)
  • A 5 mile run contains approximately 8,750 steps (ouch!)
  • If you were to run 5 miles each week, that is more than 450,000 steps in a year
  • By replacing these miles with a rowing workout, you would save your joints 450,000 impacts each year


Rowing Benefit 4: Scalable

Rowing provides a perfect cross training workout for any athlete, and it is scalable to any injury or ability. In a Total Row class, we like to tout the fact that our classes have had an Olympic gold medalist sitting next to a senior citizen – yes, this actually happened!

Because of its low-impact nature, and your ability to dictate and scale the workout tempo and resistance on our world-class Water Rowers, participants of any level will experience all of the benefits indoor rowing offers!


Conclusion on the Benefits of Rowing

As rowing gains in popularity around the country, its benefits are becoming clear: calorie-torching, total body, low-impact, and scalable. It is incredibly important to understand the proper form with rowing so that you can take advantage of these benefits. This is why Total Row provides a free blog, vlog, and YouTube channel.

If you have questions or comments, reach out to us – we’d love to hear from you! Remember, at Total Row your first week is FREE!