The Usefulness of Indoor Rowing

I started rowing on indoor machines at my university gym.

It became an obsession for two years.

I would row for half an hour or twenty minutes on a fixed setting and over time I increased the distance I rowed.

I enjoyed the repetitive, rhythmic motion.

I believed it was an efficient method to strengthen my arms and legs whilst still working my cardiovascular system.

Despite the relative weakness in my upper body, I relished the new challenge to power the machine and increase the distance travelled.

I have rowed on water recreationally only a few times, but is far more technical. The rowing machine was the most convenient and accessible piece of equipment to teach me the correct technique without joining a club.

For the indoor triathlon competitions I later entered, rowing was the first exercise, which replaced the traditional swim. I preferred this.

The training for this section was rowing consistent 500m repeats with 2-minute rests in between. I recommend this as an effective workout.

I also had the ambition to row the distance of a marathon. But it never materialised. Over three hours of sitting on the hard, uncomfortable seat deterred me. However, I came to love the Concept2 Indoor Rower and would never rule out a return to the pursuit of setting new personal records and attempting this feat of endurance. Only, I would need to commit to purchasing a gym membership or buying a machine, both of which are expensive and therefore unlikely.


Personal records (set 2009 – 2012):

500m – 1:45

4-minute O’Neill test – 1,048m

1,500m – 5:40

3,000m – 13:14

4,000m – 17:27

5,000m – 20:21

6,000m – 27:52

30 minutes – 6,651m

10,000m – 43:29

21,097m (half marathon) – 1:44:12

2 thoughts on “The Usefulness of Indoor Rowing

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