8 Benefits Of Rowing, The Unsung Hero Of Low-Impact Workouts

No oars required.

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Trainers share the many benefits of rowing workouts, from building endurance to boosting coordinatio...

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You don’t need to have access to water and a boat to slay a rowing workout. Hit the ergometer (nicknamed erg) at home or at the gym to reap the many rowing workout benefits – which include increased strength, stress relief, and more.

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It Boosts Endurance

Rowing gets your heart pounding, trains it to circulate nourishing oxygen throughout your body more efficiently over time, says Row House Go coach Caley Crawford. The end result? Better cardio endurance — take that, jogging.

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It Builds Full-Body Strength

Don’t be fooled by rowing’s cardio-heavy facade — it’s also a fantastic strength workout, says Crawford. Arms, legs, back, and core muscles: You name it, rowing works it, which is why hitting the erg on the reg builds both muscle strength and endurance.

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It’s Low-Impact

High-impact sports like running can wear on your joints and tendons. Rowing offers the same cardio boost, but without stressing your bones, says Onyx lead trainer Katy Neville. As a result, it's sustainable — so you can safely enjoy rowing well into the future.

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It Relieves Stress

Research shows that exercise of all kinds can reduce stress, boost your mood, and help you think clearly. And rowing is no exception, says Crawford. Bonus? The repetitive motion can be meditative, which helps you stay present as your stress floats away.

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It Improves Coordination

There’s a lot going on when you row: Your arms, legs, and core are all working together to create a seamless stride. And learning to synchronize your body can boost your coordination on and off the rowing machine, says Crawford.

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It’s Time-Efficient

Rowing is a cardio and strength-building workout rolled into one. Translation? It’s super efficient, says Crawford. In a single session, you’ll work full-body muscles and get your heart pumping to earn the most for your fitness buck.

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It’s Great For Cross-Training

If you’re an avid runner, cyclist, or other athlete, rowing is a great way to supplement your training, says Neville. Taking days off of your main sport can boost your performance and strengthen smaller muscles while going easy on tired joints.

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It’s Versatile

Thanks to the low-impact, effort-based nature of rowing, you can either go hard on the erg or opt for a light row. That’s why it’s a great exercise if your body is recovering, you have joint issues, or you’re just getting into fitness, says Crawford.

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