Here’s a question for you: If there was an activity with tons of benefits including improving heart health, toning all the major muscle groups in the body and even reducing stress, would you jump on the bandwagon to give it a try?
There are no special skills to tackle this activity, and you can do it from the comfort of your own home. That’s right, you don’t need to plunk down a wad full of cash on a specialty gym membership that you probably won’t use anyway.
This activity, of course, is rowing, and we’re here to give you all the info you need to know about the enormous improvements you will make to your body and mind when you start rowing.
1. High vs Low Impact Exercise
As we all know, some activities can be hard on the body, such as running.
On the other hand is rowing, a low-impact activity that doesn’t put stress and your body’s weight on the joints and muscles.
Rowing is a low-impact exercise, which makes it a good option for people with joint pain, or lower back pain.
Side note: Always consult with your doctor before starting a new fitness routine!
It is gentler on the body than high-impact exercises such as running or jumping, and it can help to strengthen the core muscles, which can provide support for the lower back and improve posture.
Rowers can obtain a full-body workout without pounding the pavement day in and day out.
2. Cardiovascular Health Improvements
A second benefit of rowing is upping your cardiovascular fitness. Cardiovascular refers to the circulatory system, which has 4 major components:
This system delivers oxygen and nutrients to the body’s cells and organs, including the heart.
Every cell in your body depends on this system to function properly. Rowing helps increase the heart rate and improve overall cardiovascular fitness.
This can lead to a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and other related health issues.
Having a strong cardiovascular system is paramount to good overall health.
3. Increased Muscle Strength
Looking to gain more muscle strength?
Sure, there are ways to accomplish this, such as lifting weights, working with resistance bands, push-ups, sit-ups and squats.
But these repetitive motions aren’t exactly a walk in the park, and once your joints are sore, you might just be tempted to toss in the towel.
The number 1 cause of weak muscles is inactivity.
We’ve all had couch potato syndrome at various points in our lives! Rowing works the large muscle groups in your legs, back and arms. It strengthens the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, back, shoulder, and arm muscles.
4. Weight Loss
Many adults are concerned about their ever-expanding waistline, or watching that number on the scale creep up pound by pound.
Rowing is a fantastic exercise to lose or even just maintain your weight, as it can burn a significant number of calories in a short amount of time.
How many calories? We’re glad you asked.
According to Harvard Health Publishing, you can burn a whopping 300-600 calories per hour of moderate-intensity rowing.
5. Stress Reduction
There’s plenty of stress out there for adults working or raising a family (or both).
Most of us would grab any opportunity to reduce our stress, and you can turn to rowing for this benefit, too. Exercise increases your overall health and sense of well-being in the following ways:
- Pumping up your endorphins. Physical activity ups your body’s production of endorphins, also known as your brain’s “feel good” hormones.
- Slashing the negative effects of stress. You can calm down the “fight or flight” response by shedding your daily tensions during exercise.
- Improving your mood. Regular exercise can help you relax and lower symptoms of mild anxiety.
- Help you get your zzz’s. Exercise can improve your sleep! That’s good news for all of us.
The repetitive motion of rowing can also be calming and meditative. You can also opt to listen to soothing music (or whatever is your favorite type of music) to settle down your nerves.
6. Improved Balance And Flexibility
Here’s another plus: rowing can also improve flexibility and balance.
When your muscular structure is strong, you will be able to accomplish tasks more safely, whether it’s lifting a child or carrying a bag of groceries.
Your endurance will also soar!
The movement of rowing requires a good range of motion in the joints, which can help to improve flexibility.
Additionally, the balance required to row can help to improve overall balance and stability.
Be sure to check out our beginner’s guide to rowing and rowing machines to learn more!