As winter begins to draw in and safety considerations relating to road cycling and running on frosty mornings becomes a reality, perhaps it’s time to consider investing in a rowing machine – a safe alternative to maintaining cardiovascular fitness.
Many people pass over rowing as a possible choice of exercise for cardiovascular fitness, thinking that it’s only a fair-weather activity, or that it needs large swathes of water nearby to participate. Think again! Rowing machines can be used indoors or outdoors, bought inexpensively second-hand, and can be stored upright so are relatively space efficient. They can also be split into two and are therefore easily transportable by car.
Rowing provides a fantastic whole-body workout using both your lower and upper limbs in one flowing movement. When repeated continuously over a period of time, your heart’s long-term performance will increase thereby allowing it to pump more blood around the body per beat, and improving your general fitness and performance in surprisingly little time.
Mindfulness of rowing
Rowing can be considered a meditative form of aerobic sports, where you can mindfully focus on the movement and physical action of the exercise. This minimises overactive thinking, allowing you to cast aside your day-to-day stresses and anxieties. The repetitive, non joint-stressing action can be extraordinarily soothing for both body and mind, resulting in a route to practice mindfulness with the added bonus of cardiovascular fitness!
USING A ROWING MACHINE – Tips for correct technique
Having the correct rowing technique is vital to ensuring all your muscles are working effectively. Your lower body should be the driving force of the movement with the upper body having less of a role in the power of the stroke; this will ensure that the training benefit is maximised, and the injury risk is dramatically reduced.