Better in rowing in 6 simple steps

One of the best endurance exercises: rowing

One of the best endurance exercises: rowing

Rowing is not always fun, but nothing builds your engine stronger than an intense rowing interval or even a combination of rowing and other exercises. Yes, if you are short and/or light, it might not be your favorite. But even then there is a few easy to follow tips that will improve this endurance discipline that has popped up in every Open so far.

1. Keep the chain on one straight line!

No ups and downs, especially do not pull it towards your face on the last bit of the drive phase as we see it quite often. Try to have the chain in the middle of its box (the black high thing where it comes out) the whole time.

2. Work with your legs!

The first pull is actually not a pull, at least not from the arm. Keep them straight as long as possible, but work with your legs. Generate power by straightening them, like a huge deadlift.

3. Take time on the the recovery way!

When you roll back to the monitor, take your time and a big breath. You don´t make the speed in that part. Use it to, as its name suggests, recover. 

4. Learn how to deal with rates!

The monitor shows you the strokes per minute. That is your key orientation indicator. If you have to row for a longer time, e.g. more than 1.000 meter or 30 calories, you should row around 22 to 28 s/m. Heavy and/or long athletes might row in a lower frequency since they can generate more power per stroke. Learn to control this rate and stay consistent.

5. Don´t sacrifice energy for rowing!

There is one thing special about rowing: A little difference in speed or calorie consumption can make a huge different in the recovery needed afterwards. Let´s say you are in an AFAP with several rounds of 20 cal rowing, cleans and pull ups. Finishing the rowing in 60 seconds or 70 might not really matter, but the effort used for the 60 second speed would force you into a long break before continuing. So always row in moderation, something around 70-80% of what you are capable of.

6. Find your perfect gear!

For a warm up or gentle aerobic pace, choose anything around 5 to 6. For short sprints, go high - 8 for girls, up to 10 for males. 

7. Try!

I followed the program for a few weeks and have becoming from totally terrible to pretty decent. Awesome especially to master #4. The free track is more than sufficient to get more skills and confident on the rowing machine.