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Rowing machine- good calorie burner or not???

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I usually go on the elliptical and treadmill as I know they're good calorie burners, but today I had a try on one of those rowing machine, and I really love doing it! I want to know whether it is a good calorie burner and which group of muscles does it work on?? Thanks!
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personally I think it's so so.

I use it because I usually run for excerise but I rarely work out my upper body so, when my legs need a break I like to do 30 mins or so on the rowing machine.  We have one in our apartment complex.

Sorry I should of read your whole post.  this machine works your briceps, middle back and shoulders and to a small degree your legs.  I think you can get a pretty good cardio workout on this machine...I know I do (eg. 300 calories in 30mins).  But I still get a better workout running.
Hey Sytso,

The rowing machine is an excellent calorie burner, if you have been shown how to do it. The machine is able, if done right, to simulate almost completely the work done in a crew boat. The machine is fantastic and can be one of the most difficult workouts if you are doing it right and at a high intensity levels.

The muscles that rowing are supposed to work are almost all major muscles groups. The most important muscles, actually, are the legs. Contrary to what many people think, a rower moves the boat with his legs because that part of the body has much more force and drive than the upper part does. So a boat seat is designed on a slide to make the maximum use of this high energy, high power muscle group.

However, when done by many novice users, often there is more use of the arms and upper back because that is our natural tendency when we grab onto a rope :). I can tell you that the size of my legs when I was rowing was enough to convince anyone that it is definitely a leg workout! That being said, you should also be using your arms and your back and shoulders to finish up a stroke and squeeze out that last bit of power.

I would suggest visiting a website to learn more about the stroke and also talking to either a trainer or a friend who has experience with rowing or rowing machines. Once you have down the basic form and the general idea of when you are supposed to be pulling with specific muscle groups, you can make this a workout of any sort. They are great for steady, long endurance workouts at a lower intensity level or for high intensity sprints. Either way, its a good machine :)

I hope that helps!!
yes, PLEASE have someone show you how to use it properly.  I rowed freshman year at college and I agree, it is a LEG workout...not so much upper body like it looks. 

And, if you love it a lot, you're probably not doing it quite right haha.  When I started using it properly I was sore for a month straight doing easy workouts (and I had been in shape)...

but it is a great workout...just don't overdo it, it'll hurt :-)
Hey again,

Here is a website that explains the stroke on a rowing machine: _fitness_training/cardiovascular_training/ind ex.php?pmid=183&gmid=173&mode=1&a id=70&page=1

The article makes a good point that it is not about how hard you pull on the rope, it is about how to use your muscle groups efficiently to produce the most powerful drive (the push off the slide with the legs).

Also, something I didn't say before is that if you like the workout then stick with it for that reason. It will keep you coming back if you enjoy it ;).
I second what lauradie11 says. If you are doing it competetively it can be brutal!! As long as you aren't doing it for time, though I don't think it will make you vomit ;)
20 years ago before i got old and really fat I used to lift weights and run...  I did the rowing when my knees were hurting me...  one time I rowed that sucker right off the mounts and it started sliding across the floor...   it is a treasured moment in my mad as a hatter history of physical excess...
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A bit late on this post, but if you're interested in making sure you've got your stroke right, Concept2, who make a lot of the rowing machines out there, offers a free DVD that shows you how to use the machine, which I found very helpful.  You can request a copy from their website:

It's also a really great website, because there are lots of articles on how to get started, and you can log your meters rowed/times.  I found it very helpful. 

I really like the rowing machine, because it does work a broad range of muscle groups, particularly you core and legs, but also some arms, as others have said above.  The bulk is a leg motion, however.  When you do it right. 
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