6 Rowing Machine Exercises That Will Help You Lose Weight

Rowing machine exercises can be a refreshing change to your routine (Image via Pexels @Andres Ayrton)
Rowing machine exercises can be a refreshing change to your routine (Image via Pexels/Andres Ayrton)

If you're tired of running on treadmills, rowing machine exercises can provide a good variation to your workout routine. Rowing machine exercises provide several strength and conditioning benefits without putting repetitive pressure on the joints.

In general, rowing is a low-impact, utilitarian workout that's simple to master. It's an excellent tool for developing overall fitness and can be used in both high-intensity training sessions and low-intensity recovery activities.

Learning how to set up the rower and execute good technique is critical for getting the most out of this machine. Learning a variety of routines can also assist a lot.

Rowing Machine Exercises to Lose Weight

Check out the following six rowing machine exercises you can do to lose weight:

1) Beginner 19-Minute Workout

While this is a beginner workout, you will definitely feel it. It's a descending pyramid followed by an ascending pyramid at particular strokes per minute (spm). Throughout the process, you will learn to control your strokes and maintain your power while burning calories. You can follow the below schedule:

  • 4 minutes @ 22 spm
  • 3 minutes @ 24 spm
  • 2 minutes @ 26 spm
  • 1 minute @ 28 spm
  • 2 minutes @ 26 spm
  • 3 minutes @ 24 spm
  • 4 minutes @ 22 spm

Beginners should aim for 20-minute workouts three times a week at the start. A lower intensity will allow you to concentrate on technique. It takes a lot of mental focus to get your body to do the right thing when learning to row. Increase your intensity when you master the technique.


2) Row and Burpee

A burpee penalty is the best way to motivate yourself to row faster. This rowing machine exercise will force you to stay on track, as deviating from your target pace will result in a set of burpees.

How to do it:

  • You need to complete 5 500-meter rows. Your goal is to complete each row in 1:40.
  • Take a 5-minute break between rounds.
  • If you finish in under 1:40, relax. If you complete in more than 1:40, keep track of how many seconds you went over. You will have to complete that many burpees.
  • (For example, if you finish in 1:50, you would do ten burpees. You do two burpees if you finish in 1:42).

3) Calorie Count Up

This workout begins slowly but ends with a bang. You don't need to warm up before this one, as this rowing machine exercise has a natural built-in warm-up.

To do the exercise:

  • Program a rower to count one-minute intervals. Your goal is to consume the appropriate number of calories before each minute expires.
  • Row for five calories in the first minute, and rest till the next minute begins. Row for six calories the next minute, and rest till the next minute begins.
  • Work your way up the ladder. Try to finish as many rounds as possible. When you can no longer accomplish the required number of calories in one minute, the workout is over.
  • Try to complete at least 15 minutes of work.

4) EMOM (Every Minute on Minute)

In the EMOM program, rowing intervals are combined with other workouts such as lunges, bent-over rows. Do one-minute intervals with 30-60 seconds of rest in between. Aim for three to four circuits. This workout is pretty intense and will get you sweating in no time.

Committing to consistency over a longer period is more vital than burning out after only a few weeks of doing out every day. Depending on the intensity of your goals, you can do a variety of rowing machine exercises, including ones that focus on endurance, strength training, and even total body burn. Performing this workout can be your best bet if you're looking for weight loss.


5) Pump and Row Pyramid

Warm up for five minutes, and follow the sequence below to complete this rowing machine exercise.

  • Row 100 meters as quickly as you can.
  • Do five reps of bodyweight squat
  • Do five reps of push-ups
  • Mountain climber with feet elevated: 5 reps

That concludes the first round. Repeat for the remaining rounds, resting as needed, but adjusting the number of reps as directed below.

Round 2: Row 200 meters, then perform 10 repetitions of each move.

Round 3: Row 300 meters, then perform 15 repetitions of each move.

Round 4: Row 200 meters, then perform 10 repetitions of each move.

Round 5: Row 100 meters, then perform 5 repetitions of each move.

Complete with a 60-second plank.


6) Distance Interval

This workout incorporates distance intervals and a one-on-one work-to-rest ratio.

  • Row for 100 meters
  • 1 minute of rest
  • 200 meters of rowing
  • 1 minute of rest
  • 300 meters of rowing
  • 1 minute of rest
  • Row for 200 meters
  • 1 minute of rest
  • Row for 100 meters


Rowing machine exercises are a total body workout that engage most of the muscles with little to no stress throughout each stroke. They burn fat while offering incredible cardiovascular fitness and physical endurance.

Rowing builds more strength and power than other full body cardio activities, such as swimming and cross-country skiing. The aforementioned rowing workouts can help you sweat it out and burn calories.

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Edited by Bhargav
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