Portable Rowing Machine – A Buyers Guide

December 2nd, 2017

The Portable Rowing Machine Buyers Guide – Absolutely everything you need to know

Creating a bespoke work out environment in your own home can be an exciting hobby to have but can also help save money in the long run. If you are serious about doing your work outs long term; kitting out your own mini gym with the equipment to suit your workout routine can often be cheaper and more productive than paying for a gym membership. Having a work out room within walking distance from your bedroom means you are more likely to use it, especially in those winter cold winter months.

A rowing machine is a must have for your home gym.

To understand why this is the case, we first need to understand what this piece of equipment is and what it is good for. Sometimes called an indoor rowing machine essentially simulates the actions of rowing a boat and whilst you might think this is mainly an arm exercise you would be wrong.



An indoor rower is made by attaching a string on a weighted line, the rower pulls the handle with their arms, but is moved back thanks to the force of the legs. All this must be done with perfect posture keeping the back straight and the shoulders back, meaning that core strength is used. So straight away it is obvious to see that a wide range of muscles are being used. In fact rowing enthusiasts actually consider rowing to primarily be beneficial to the lower body.

Due to the variable tension settings indoor rowing machines can be used for a wide variety of exercises to suit your work out needs; this also means that the machine adapts as your needs do. As you require a more challenging work out the machine will be able to offer that without having to buy more weights for example.

Low Tension Settings

Low tensions settings (least weight being pulled) mean that you can do a lot of reps relatively quickly. This makes the machine a perfect choice for cardio. Unlike a simple treadmill, you are now warming a much wider range of muscles than you would be if you were using a treadmill, however it requires a bit of discipline as your posture needs to always be spot on to make sure your core is getting the full benefit of the work out.

The low tension cardio option is also a good choice for older individuals or people with knee issues. Long term runners tend to complain of knee issues, this is because all your weight is being supported by your knees as you hop from one leg to the other.

If you suffer from knee ailments, a rowing machine could be the perfect warm up machine for you.

Mid Tension Settings

Whilst low tension is good for cardio, mid tension settings are incredibly good for your core strength.

This setting allows for a relatively high number of reps, if done right with the correct posture, it ensure that your core set of muscles are constantly being worked out; from when you initially push out on the rowing machine using your legs, to when you maintain your posture when your legs are fully extended, and finally when you slowly let the machine pull you back in keeping your back in the upright position and your shoulders back allow you to ensure your abdominal muscles are taught.

When doing these mid tension work outs, you will often find (at least at the start until your core strength builds up) that it is your abdominal muscles that ache the most and force you to stop. The mid tension workout on a rowing machine is also incredibly beneficial if you are trying to lose weight. Regularly performing this kind of exercise will speed up your metabolism, which often slows down considerably when you put on weight.

This exercise promotes cardio but thanks to the mid tension also ensures that calories (and therefore fat) are being burned for a relatively extended amount of time. This combined with a proper diet can be a perfect weight loss set up.

High Tension Settings

The one fall back of having your own work out room at home as opposed to a gym membership can sometimes be that you don’t have enough equipment to work everything out if you are trying to bulk up and build muscle.

This is where the rowing machine can be a real treat as it pretty much works out everything.

When you first grab the handle and start to move the weight from stand still you are immediately working your Erector Spinae (Lower back), your hamstrings and your gastrocnemius and soleus (calf muscles). As you push back towards having fully extended legs, the same muscles are still being worked, but in order to move back your quadriceps need to kick in as well as your Rhomboids (upper central back muscles) in order to hold on to the handle.

Once you have fully extended your legs, in order to straighten your back and keep your shoulder posture correct, you are using a lot of upper body muscles both front (pectoralis Major) and back muscles. However your rectus abdominus (lower abs) also help you keep your posture. Your deltoids, triceps and the extensors and flexors on your wrist (all arm muscles) stop you from being pulled back. Finally as you reach the fully extended “sat up” position, your biceps and oblique muscles help you keep the position. This means that if you have the right posture, increase the weight enough, and do this exercise slow and methodically you are working pretty much every muscle in your body.

Resistance Types of Rowing Machines

Now we know what a portable indoor rower is good for, what should you get? Wide range of resistance programs It is important that all of the above work out styles are catered for by the machine you decide to buy.

All the portable rowing machines you can buy will fit the first two scenarios, but you need to make sure you have a wide range of resistances so that you can alter the tension or weight to fit your needs. You will almost always start out on a relatively light setting as you get used to the device but once you have had it for a while it would be a shame, if you wanted to up your lift and there simply wasn’t an option for it.

Resistance systems rowing machines are usually made in one of four ways. Each feels slightly different and it’s probably worth investing is what you are going to feel most comfortable with long term.

Magnetic – These use magnets to make the pulling action harder or easier, this kind of system is smooth and very closely resembles actual rowing (harder initial pull but once you gain momentum they go a lot easier). These are especially good for leg work outs.

Hydraulic – These systems use liquids with variable densities to make it easier or harder for you to complete the pulling motion, these aren’t quite as realistic as magnetic systems when it comes to mimicking rowing, however they are very good for working a whole range of muscles easily.

Sculling – These use a swinging as opposed to a bar and a cable. These are usually the cheaper options and can be more compact.

Air – Air rowers are the perfect combination of aerobic workout and a well-rounded muscle tone building. These work by creating resistance when air is pushed through thin gaps in pipes, regulating the size of the pipe hole regulates the strength of the resistance.

Size

If you are sorting out your own home exercise centre you are going to be space conscious. Before you make the purchase decide where you are going to place the device and measure the space you have available. There is no reason buying something larger than what you have space for so do you’re measuring in advance.

What should you buy?

With that all being said, you hopefully have a pretty good idea of what you can do with a portable rowing machine and what you should be looking for, so below is a range of high rated options from Amazon to get your browsing started:

Stamina 1205 Precision Rower – Click to view the latest price

The Stamina 1205 Precision rower is on the list mainly because it offers absolutely everything you need for a decent price and it is very compact. It is the smallest device we are going to recommend coming in at only 48 inches long and weighing only 47 lbs, meaning that it will just about fit in any flat.

Since it is a hydraulic device you will have a very well rounded work out. On the down side this probably isn’t the best machine if you are looking for a cardio solution. The resistance programs don’t start quite as low as they should, the display and programmable settings of this device are also quite limited.

Stamina Air Rower 1399 - Click to view the latest price

This devices is by no means small however it is foldable meaning it can be made more compact for storage. Its steel frame measures 77 inches long, but can be folded away to a mere 48, it is also able to carry users who weigh up to 250 pounds and comes with a three year warranty. This device weighs 53 pounds.

There is also a multi-function performance monitor meaning that records your performance over time meaning that you can track everything from distance rowed to calories burned. This device is also particularly comfy. Seats are upholstered nicely, the bar is padded to prevent blisters and the nylon foot straps make it easy for you to just focus on your work out.

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine - Click to view the latest price

This rowing machine is magnetic, offering an absolutely great leg work out. The range of resistances is top notch meaning that you can take this device all the way from easy going cardio, to full on muscle mass building.

The machine has a total of 8 levels of adjustable resistance. The large display is completely programmable and offers up all the information you need to keep track of your work out. The handle bars, foot pedals and seat are all designed with anti-slip technology meaning you can simply focus on the work out.

The main downside to this device is its size. The dimension of this device are: 82L x 19W x 23H in making it one of the larger devices we are reviewing, however it does offer built in transportation wheels for easy storage once your work out is complete.

Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 Rowing Machine – Click to view the latest price

This small compact device might not look like much, if budget or size are your limitation, it is pretty much the top of the range. Weighing just 37 pounds and measuring in at 23.5 x 46 inches you won’t find a more compact portable rowing machine that offers this much versatility.

Furthermore this devices can also be made even smaller for storage purposes. Its display isn’t the best there is, but it offers a wide variety of info clearly, helping you could everything from reps to calories. The manual resistance knob allows for easy adjustments of the air resistance system.

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5 – Click to view the latest price

If money and size isn’t an issue and you really just want top notch results then the Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5 is definitely the device for you.

Everything about this device is perfectly adjustable, from the seat height to the resistance. The performance monitor is also the top of the range offering a stroke by stroke performance comparison to let you know when your form is slipping.

The device is 96 inches long when assembled and 24 inches wide, but can take users of up to a whopping 500 pounds, on the other hand however with just one click the device can be split into two separate pieces for easy storage.

This is by far the best of the indoor rowing machines we have seen here today, it is versatile in its training and its monitoring is so good it is almost like having a coach with you making sure you keep on track, however the space requirements and cost mean you have to be serious about wanting this device.

One things for sure however, if used frequently it will offer an amazingly well rounded cardio vascular and muscle toning exercise regime.

Best Elliptical Machine Buyers Guide

June 5th, 2017

[vc_row rehub_container="true"][vc_column][vc_column_text]Tons of health enthusiasts love a good elliptical workout. An elliptical target’s many muscles at one time while giving you a boost of cardio. You could go to the gym to use one of these machines, but why waste your money on a gym membership when you could easily invest in getting an elliptical for your home. In this buyers guide, you can read up on the top 5 best Elliptical Machines and invest in one that lasts.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Schwinn 430 Elliptical Machine

You will definitely be getting your money’s worth with this product. You can expect a high tech display with 13 different functions, and Schwinn is a brand name that has been making workout equipment for years, so you know you will be getting a quality product that is worth your investment.

This Elliptical comes with 22 programming options to fit each individual user. If you require a bit of a challenge, you can choose from 20 levels of resistance in your workout. You can also hook up your phone through the built-in USB port so you can listen to music while you work out without running out the battery.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text][content-egg module=Amazon template=item][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Pros

  • This machine is known to be a health club purchase.
  • It can be found in some sporting goods stores so you can test it out before you buy.
  • Said to be quick and easy to assemble.
  • The tension is adjustable.
  • It is a machine with great stride length.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Cons

  • Some experienced a low weight capacity.
  • Said to have a weak pulse sensor.
  • Some reported inaccurate calorie burn metrics.

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Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer

This machine made it on the list for its high amount of 5-star reviews and its originality. Most ellipticals come with handlebars, but this elliptical only has the foot pedals. Some may thing this would equal out to a less intense workout, but this elliptical has stamina in its name for a reason.

The use of this machine causes you to use your core to balance, still providing you with an intense workout. Its design was made to be sturdy, easy to store and provide you with protection as you work out. This machine is also priced in at a low range.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Pros

  • This machine is made of sturdy steel.
  • The foot pedals have a non-slip grip for safety.
  • It is small and compact, making it easy to store out of sight.
  • Tracks your Exercise Time and monitors your strides so you can keep track of your workout.
  • Very lightweight and easy to transport.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Cons

  • Does not work out the arms and upper body.

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Sunny Twister Stepper with Handle Bar

This next elliptical machine also made it on the list for its high reviews and unique build. What makes this machine great is that works out the Obliques with a hand bar built for twisting. Most hand bars on elliptical machines are only made to move the arms forward and back.

This machine is not only built with a unique design but is also made to be adjustable to any height. If you want to keep track of how long you’ve been working out, this machine can do so with a built in computer. The sleek design allows for easy storage. You can put this machine in most closets, making it a great home gym addition.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Pros

  • Has an up and down and side to side action for the range of motion during the workout.
  • The multi-functioning computer counts calories and steps.
  • Come with the batteries needed for the computer.
  • Saves on electricity.
  • An Environmentally Friendly work out machine

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Cons

  • Does not have wheels for easy transport on carpeted surfaces.
  • Low weight capacity under 300 pounds

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Sunny Air Walk Trainer

This is another Sunny Health & Fitness product. It made it on the list for it’s more classical design, and simplicity. It also has a low price that is affordable for any household. With it’s standard elliptical design and easy to use technology, it is clear to see why this machine had so many 5 star reviews.

The Sunny Air walk Trainer has an abdominal support pad and a computer that provides calorie burn and the total distance of your work out. The company claims a smooth and quite performance and a 220-pound weight capacity.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Pros

  • A quiet machine to use at any time of the day.
  • Has a small and simple build.
  • The computer counts strides.
  • Provides a low-impact workout on the joints for painless use.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Cons

  • A machine with a very low weight capacity

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Sole Fitness E35 Elliptical Machine

This performance of this elliptical matches it’s high price, which is above 1,000 and below3,000. It is sold by a few different vendors on Amazon so you can choose a price that most fits your budget. This is a larger piece of equipment that will require some space in your home.

The many amenities of this machine include a strap that detects your heart rate, adjustable pedals for a range of different strides, and a large and sturdy frame. This elliptical will be part of your home gym for a long time, which is another reason the price is acceptable for the product.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Pros

  • Highest weight limit of 375 pounds.
  • Has adjustable measurements for any size user.
  • Comes with a 5-year manufacturer warranty.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text]Cons

  • The large frame of this machine takes up a lot of space.
  • Has a rather high price range.

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In Conclusion

There are many different types of elliptical machines to choose from, all with multiple reviews to help you feel like you are making the right choice.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Best Weight Bench Buyers Guide

February 5th, 2017

[vc_row rehub_container="true"][vc_column][vc_column_text]Are you in the market for a weight bench and are struggling with the choice of the best one? Or are you just not certain of what you need to consider as you make the purchase? It is true that coming up with the right choice of a weigh bench is quite daunting but with proper information and insight, it can be an interesting and fun experience.

A weight bench can help you perform numerous exercises that target various body parts including chest muscles. Your chest is the principle foundation to strengthening and building other body muscles and as you would correctly guess, this is not possible on a feeble, poorly designed bench. So which is the best one?

Factors to Consider When Buying A Weight Bench

Flexibility: Flexible benches can subsequently be adjusted to allow one perform diverse types of workouts. These benches may either come equipped with pins or steps that allow adjusting of the bench inclination and height as needed.

Quality: Quality represents both the underlying material of the bench and its strength. The quality of a bench is associated with the overall safety of the respective users since benches with better and superior quality are both safer and more stable.

Budget: Similar to other commodities out in the market, not all benches share a similar price tag. Depending on your requirements, go for a bench that fits your pocket size and fully satisfies your needs.

Warranty: Warranty in most cases serves as a testimony of the trust the manufacturer has with the product. If your weight bench is accompanied by one, then you can purchase it worry free.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

#1 XMark Fitness Commercial XM-7472

When it comes to weight benches, the Xmark Fitness bench is an undeniable beast. In particular, one of the standout features is its characteristic design. It is designed using a 2 x 3-inch rectangular steel which is further boosted by an 11-gauge Heavy duty commercial grade build. With this bench, you have the choice between 7 diverse adjustment positions not to mention its weight handling capacity of an approximate maximum of 1500 lbs.

What’s more, the bench comes with a flexible seat that is adjustable to three diverse workout positions and also gives you the liberty to add supplementary extensions such as a Preacher Curl (XM-7454) Attachment and a Leg Extension/Leg Curl Attachment that allows it to double as multiple workout machines.

Finally, the bench has an aesthetically appealing design and is among the most stable weight benches in the market.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • Feature-stacked weight bench
  • Flexible and allows the user 7 diverse workout position
  • Simple to assemble and uncompromisingly comfortable
  • Heavy with a considerable weight capacity

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • Gap in the bench is large and small hips can be hindered by this

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#2 Bowflex Select Tech 5.1 Adjustable Bench

Second on the list is the Bowflex 5.1 which is among the best in the market and unsurprisingly for right reasons.

First, this bench offers amazing flexibility allowing adjustment to 4 diverse workout positions. Moreover, aside from having a maximum weight capacity of 300lbs, it is accompanied by a standard removable leg hold-down brace which boosts its stability especially when it is in decline position.

In the course of your workouts, this bench retains its form and stability and although it does arrive assembled, it has an easy to follow assembly procedure.

Finally, with its sexy, sleek design, this is a wonderful addition to your gym and although it is not foldable, it is among the best rated weigh benches courtesy of its reliability and quality.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • It is flexible and even allows decline workouts which is unique with weight benches
  • It is easy to assemble and consistently steady
  • It has a 17-degree decline workout position that facilitates dumbbell decline bench press that pumps your chest muscles
  • Accompanied by a standard removable leg hold-down brace which boosts its stability

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • It is not foldable

[/wpsm_cons][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Merax 608XC 21 Speed 700C Aluminium Road Bike Racing Bicycle

The Merax 608XC 21 is a lightweight and sturdy 6061 Aluminium Frame Road Bike that was built to provide a smooth and convenient ride. This road bike is very easy to assemble, it requires no tools during assembling. The bike has an aluminium kickstand which reduces the bike’s weight. It has dual brakes which ensures that the bike stops easily and effortlessly when the brakes are applied.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • The bike is made of lightweight aluminium which combines speed with durability.
  • The dual brakes feature also ensures that the bike is safe to use.

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • The bike’s tires are of poor quality.

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Kestrel Talon Tri Shimano 105 Bicycle

The Kestrel Talon Tri Shimano 105 Bicycle is made from quality carbon fiber. Carbon fiber is a material that is only used in high quality bikes. This road bike has an attractive design and construction which makes it among the finest looking bikes. Aside the good look of this bike, it also boasts of tremendous power and quality. This road bike has several high performance features among which includes Enhanced Modulus Hybrid Frameset, EMH Carbon Fork and Carbon Rear Triangle.

This is a road bike that is equipped with 11 speed shifts for great speed. This bike is also equipped with the Shimano 105 Brake which is a very effective brake. This product comes with two color choices and has a weight of 20 pounds.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • The bike is made with high quality carbon fiber.
  • The road bike has a very attractive construction and design.
  • The bike is also lightweight which makes it great for fast transportation.

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • This bike does not come with pedals. You have to purchase and install pedals yourself.

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Takara Kabuto Single Speed Road Bike

This is a great commuter road bike with an attractive design. It also comes with a great packaging. This is an affordable bike that makes for easy transport.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • The bike has a great appearance and flashy colors.

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • It is a single speed bike.

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Giordano Libero Acciao Road Bike

The Giordano Libero Acciao Road Bike has a frame and fork made of steel. This bike comes in three sizes which are small, medium and large. This road bike has a threadless 1 1/8 Alloy Handlebar and Stem. The road bike also has water bottle mounts. The steel construction of this product makes it very reliable and durable.

However, unlike other steel bikes the Libero Acciao is fairly weight, weighing only about 25-30 pounds. This allows the bike to be very fast when it is driven. This bike also comes with effective brakes and shifters.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • The bike is made with steel which makes it very durable. It is also light weight which makes it easy for it to move at great speeds.
  • The bike has high quality shifters and brakes which makes it safe to use.

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • The bike does not come assembled. It has to be assembled at additional costs by a professional.

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Schwinn Men’s Phocus 1600 Road Bike

This bike comes with 700c wheels and is very reliable. The bike is made of lightweight aluminium material. The bike has a quick release front wheel and brakes from Promax. The bike has alloy calipers which makes it very dependable when it comes to stopping the bike. The height of the bike can also be modified to suit the stature of the rider.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • The bike is very easy to assemble. It is affordable and can also move at great speeds.
  • The bike is made with durable and reliable material.

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • The bike only comes in one size, pedal straps are not high quality and there is no gear indicator on the switch.

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Tommaso Sterrata Road Bike

The Tommaso Sterrata Road Bike is built with great versatility. It has good tires which provides traction and has a great appearance. This is a bike that is constructed to be durable as well as powerful. This bike has a compact geometry which provides a smoother ride when compared to other road bikes. The bike is equipped with a ultra compact handlebar which allows for a steady and comfortable ride. The bike is easy to assemble and also easy to use.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_pros]

  • The road bike comes with a seven days free test ride policy which allows you to test the bike for seven days without commitment. You can return the bike within this period if you are not satisfied and get a full refund.
  • The bike is made of durable materials. It is also easy to assemble.

[/wpsm_pros][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text][wpsm_cons]

  • There is hardly any negative thing about this bike except that you have to assemble it yourself.

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Compact Rowing Machine

January 20th, 2017

Compact Rowing Machine Buyers Guide

Paleontologists inform us that human beings have been on the earth for about 200,000 years. For most of that time, humans have lived in hunting and gathering communities. Due to the necessity of constant physical work, our bodies have evolved to meet the needs of survival. At that point human beings began to walk upright, and this brought about a change in our muscles, skin, bones, and our cardiovascular systems. Our bodies adapted to the needs of the environment, and kept changing if the environment changed around us.

For over 199,000 of those 200,000 years of our existence, we lived in tribal communities, where we hunted for food on land, which kept the muscles in shape for running after prey. We also ate fish, and for going out into the water to catch our food, we built small craft to take us out where the fish were. One of the first kinds of sea-craft was the canoe, which was propelled by oars which allowed us to travel in the water. The action of the oars moved water from the front to the back of the paddle, giving the canoe forward motion. This kind of exercise in primitive man, we know scientifically today, worked his upper muscles, cardiovascular system, and his lower body. This kind of workout was regularly demanded of our ancestors due to their way of living, since for most of human history, there were no offices or meeting rooms, since there were no centralized urban centers.

In 1800 industrialization began in England and it changed the basic way we humans sustained life. Industry and manufacturing produced mass quantities of the same products for distribution to those who needed it, first locally, then throughout the world. People worked long hours in manufacturing plants, many assigned to repeat the same motions for extended periods of time. Then, in the late 20th century, the World Wide Web was introduced on a large scale, accessible not only to manufacturing, but tio small businesses, entrepreneurs, and the public.

The Internet and all it can provide us is an wonderful advancement in human life. As our brains have adapted to this new means of producing and gathering information, our bodies still have the same requirements for use that they have for thousands of years. Much work today requires human beings to be sedentary, many sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week or longer. And during this time, the body is not receiving the workout is needs. This is why many of us have an exercise regimen as part of our daily routine. This may involve jogging, playing sports, weight training, cardio exercises such as treadmills and exercise bikes. Many exercise routies require the use of such machines.

One kind of tool to have entered the market is a rowing machine. As we know, rowing machines replicate the paddling that is done on a body of water. As the need for exercise machines has grown, so have the different kinds of exercise gear we have to choose from. And as our storage and living spaces have changed, there has been a drive toward compact exercise equipment.

Why rowing machines?

Rowing machines are known to be one of the best aerobic workouts, they help greatly to achieve weight loss, they help to attain increased endurance, as well as being an affordable way to get the exercise your body needs. Rowing machines also give you one of the best cardio workouts you can get with the lowest negative impact on your body. Another great aspect of rowing machines is that you can set your own level of resistance, and gradually move to demanding workouts as your endurance increases.

On the market today there are many more compact rowing machines than there were even ten years ago. How can you tell which compact rowing machine is best for your needs, your lifestyle and your living space. We have researched and compiled here for you what we believe are five of the best compact rowing machines out on the market today. After reading this, we encourage you to check out the website’s manufacturer for more information.

What should you look for when buying a rowung machine.? Manufacturers have reacted and made impriovements to their products over the years. Like human beings they have also evolved to where rowing machines are better today than they were when they were first created. Yet some are better than others, and some manufacturer have placed more emphasis on user needs than others.

When choosing a rowing machine, always make sure it is a durable and long-lasting liece of equipment that can withstand abuse. It is also very important that the rowing machine is constructed in such a way that it addresses cardiovascular fitness. To make certain it does this, it is important that during the workout, the body is made as comfortable as possible (a cushioned seat and preferable ergonomically designed handles).

Also of great importance is that the machie glide as smoothly as possible along the frame. This is usually found in an all-aluminum or stainless steel rack and frame. Depending on how much you want to invest, construction material that include solid ash are great for muffling sound, but this may drive up the price of your rowing machine. In general, higher priced rowing machines (over $1000.00) have the best performance and sound absorption options, but many of these features, if not all, can be found in lwer priced machines. It’s always best to know what you’re looking for first befire you buy. For example, if the sound of the rowing machine won’t casue a problem where you live, then you can focus on those features that you need in the lower priced models. All good manufacturers have theior features highlighted on the box in bullet points, and bullet-pointed on websites such as Amazon in bullet-points. These are the features they claim to be their best selling points, and will probably contain the information you will need to make a msart choice.

Another aspect of rowing machines to consider is their folding capabilities, even in the compact rowing machines that are described here. A folding capability gives the user more options, especially is living in a smaller space with less room. In this case, even a compact rowing machine that folds has an advantage over one that doesn’t.

Being able to keep trck of your p[rogress is the key to a great cardiac workout. Displays should be large enough to read during the workout if possible, and also should provide the basic information you will need to get the omtimal results. Key indicators such as time and distance should be scored on every display. Calories being brumned is nice to know, but if the workout is a good one, is done regularly and is on a good machine, then the calories wil always be burned. It is also of great importance that the rower is able to record your speed. Having a number and a score to go by, can be equated with resistance and you can better increase your endurance and muscle strength by having a numebrical figure to go by.

Which Rowing Machine?

1. Stamina 1215 Orbital Rowing Machine with Free Motion Arms

The Stamina Brand Orbital rowing machine weighs 47 pounds and is fills an area of 33 by 48 inches. The manufacturer describes its product in terms of how operating boat, kayak or canoe impacts the body. For example, Stamina describes four phases of exercise, the first phase is called the catch phase. In this first phase, the knees of the user of this rowing machine are pulled up, and the shins are vertical. The arms and the shoulders are forward. This is identical to the position the body is in when oars are placed into the water.

The second phase, the drive phase, is an exercise for the legs. During the finish phase,mthe legs are extended forward, while the user’s shoulders are back. The elbows are in a flexed position, and the oar handles rest against the body. The last, recovery phase, is the last phase in the rowing process: the knees are flexed and the arms pass over them, reach forward, and the body motions for rowing being again.

Tha Stamina Orbital Rowing Machine comes with a monitor which calculates speed and distance, the number of strokes made, elpsed time, and the number of calories that are being burned during the user’s workout. The roller system that moves the exerciser forward and backward uses a cconventional but tried and true ball bearning rolling sytem, deisned to make the glide from fron to back during the rowing prcess as natural as possible.

There are five different settings that gelp the user monitor their resistance levels, startng from lowest to highest levels. It is composed of an aluminum frame and is highly durable. It can support up to 250 pounds.

2. Proform 440R Rower

The Proform 440R Rower boasts ergonomic handles and molded seat. Its compact dimensions take up an area of 49 by 36 inches, making it an easy fit in any room in your living space. The rower also can be folded up. It comes with eight different rowing resistance levels, and a flywheel that is sensitive to inertia. The bike pedals pivot. There is also a pulley station, used during standing. The pulleys are low, so the user can increase resistance and build strength in different muscles: curls for biceps, tricep extensions, and dead lifting.

Proform 440R Rower comes with a large LCD display which tracks strokes per minute, distance traveled, elapsed time, and the number of calories burned. And, for keeping the feet in place, the Proform Rower also has durable adjustable straps. These are important for obtaining the best results for lower body workout. The workout also goes much more smoothly with feel in place and immovable.

3. Concept2 Model D Rower

One of the higher-rated rowing machines, it requires an area of 48 by 28 inches. It provides the user with a very low-impact workout, fitted with an adjustable seat up to 14 inches, ergonomic handles and an adjustable footrest.

A nice addition on the Concept2 Model D are the caster wheels, making it easy to move from place to place. A smart feature of this rowing machine is its nickel-plated chain, for durability. Also important is its flywheel and damper design, which gives users greater control over their workout than other models. Its spiral damper allows you to adjust the amount of air going to the flywheel, which aids greatly in controlling resistance. This model can also be used as a workstation for professional athletes, due to its performance features such as the fulywheel and damper and its reliable nickel-plated chain,

The Concept2 Model D Rower comes apart in the middle, so storage in small spaces is made possible.

4. Kettler Favorit Rowing Machine

The Kettler Favorit model comes with a large 6-function LCD display, which displays useful information such as time, distance, energy expended, and a cardiac wellness gradation from 1 to 6. Resistance is increased with hydraulic pistons which can be adjusted by the use of clamps. Regarding resistance, the Kettler model has 50 different level markings, which means that 50 resistance levels can be set.

The Kettler Favorit Rowing machine can hold up to 285 pounds. The footplates ensure natural leg movement through the plates’ pivoting action.

5. First Degree Fitness Newport AR

The dimensions for the First Degree Fitness Rower are 38 by 23 inches. It is a water rower, which means that resistance is established through natural rowing – the way an oar and paddle would flow through water. It also comes with adjustable levels of fluid resistance, so the user can simulate paddling through a quiet stream with little resistance, or through a rushing river with great resistance. Technology today is moving toward water rowers, and this one is of compact design and includes this water rowing feature. Water rowing equates to a much smoother resistance. Imagining a paddle moving through water, and you will understand how a water rowing machine will work and feel. Water rowers have a design that is somewhat different from traditional rowing machines, made possible by the addition of the small water tank.

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What Muscle Groups Does a Rowing Machine Workout

January 12th, 2017

Benefits of Rowing Machines

Most of the equipment you find in your gym works out specific muscles in your body. However, if you are looking for equipment in your health club that thoroughly works out your whole body, a rowing machine will provide just that. The solid work out you get from a rowing machine will get you sweating without resting as both the push and the pull require the use of your muscles. Therefore, let us look at the muscles that this gym equipment works out during a complete rowing stroke.

First, we need to look at the muscle groups worked out from the catch, the start drive, the drive, and the finish.

The Catch

Muscles worked out during the catch include Gastrochnemius, and Soleus, Erector Spinae, and Hamstrings.

Starting the Drive

Muscles worked include the Rhomboids, Erector Spinae, Gastrochnemius and Soleus, Quadriceps, and Hamstrings.

The Drive

Muscles worked include Rectus Abdominus, Triceps, Erector Spinae, Rhomboids, Trapezius, Deltoids, Pectoralis Major, Quadriceps, Glutes, Wrist Extensors, Gastrochnemius and Soleus, and Hamstrings.

The Finish

Muscles worked include Wrist Extensors and Flexors, Erector Spinae, Triceps, Biceps, Pectoralis Major, Deltoids, Rectus Abdominus, Quadriceps, Hamstrings, and Internal and External Obliques.

Muscle Groups

Having listed the muscles worked out in each movement, you also need to know the muscle groups on each part of the body that you work out when using a rowing machine. When you use the machine in the right way, they will have a major impact on the muscles listed below.

Arm Muscles

These consist of your upper arms are also comprised of the biceps that help bend your elbows as you are pulling the rower’s handle towards your midsection to complete a rowing stroke. Your triceps work in conjunction with you chest muscles and anterior deltoids to help pull out your arms in preparation for another repletion of a full stroke. However, the forward movement consists of less resistance compared to the pull towards your midsection.

Leg muscles

The catch begins with a strong leg push. You extend your knees and hips and use the largest muscles found in your body, the hamstrings, quadriceps, and gluteus maximus. These muscles are located at eh back and front of your thighs as well as the back of your hips.

Midsection muscles

The force you generate using your legs is conveyed to the rower handle using your arms and back. Your core muscles help prevent the lower part of your back giving in to the pressure. Therefore, the core muscles contract to support your lower spine and lumbar. The muscles include the transverse abdominis, rectus abdominis, erector Spinae, and obliques. Once you lean backwards, your Erector Spinae helps maintain balance by extending your lower back.

Hip muscles

As you are sliding forward, you realize that the momentum of the movement is done by contraction of your hamstrings and hip flexor muscles. The front part of the hip known as ilipsoas or hip flexor muscles works with the rectus femoris and quadriceps to help flex your hips and propel you forward before you begin the next stroke. Your hamstrings will contract as your knees bend and add to the forward momentum in preparation for the next pull.

Upper back muscles

As you pull your shoulders and arms back when drawing the rower’s handle towards your midsection, you use muscles found around your shoulders and upper back. Therefore, your rhomboids and upper Trapezius found between the shoulder blades help pull your shoulders towards the back and your latissimus dorsi located just beneath the armpits help pull the upper arms backward into the extension.

With the rowing machine, you have the best cardiovascular exercise you can get from any other exercise routine in the gym. Your heart and lungs are stimulated and strengthened. As shown by the movements described above, the rowing machine workout is the best way to get a whole body workout at your health club. In case you do not know how to use the rowing machine properly, talk to an instructor to take you through the process. In two days, you will be ready to use the machine by yourself and burn that fat or build those muscles that you always wanted using this full body workout. Therefore, visit the gym today and ask for directions to the rowing machine to begin the ultimate cardiovascular gym routine you are yet to experience.

Best Rowing Machine For Under $500

January 7th, 2017

1. Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 Rowing Machine

The Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 is considered to be the best rowing machine under $500 that you can find in Amazon for only $130.00. You can perform all fitness activities using this product which works well on all your major muscle groups.

Rowing can help build the muscles of your arms, back, abdomen, buttocks and legs. It allows you to execute a full range of motion because it has rowing arms. It also has an adjustable gas shock resistance which can be changed easily. It only means that the level of your workout can also be changed instantaneously.

Since it has a multi-function monitor, this is ideal as it shows you the stroke count, calories burned, and the time spent in rowing. Since it is constructed with steel frame, you will be ensured that it is safe to use. Its center beam is also made from aluminum, crafted to withstand longer use. It is certified to be sturdy, which means that it can last for a lifetime.

Moreover, you need not to worry about the space because you can easily fold and assemble it for storage and use respectively. This is perfect if you are highly motivated but has a limited space for workout. Although it is only 23.5 inches wide by 46 inches long, its performance is terrific that it functions twice its size.

Pros

The Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 Rowing Machine is an effective and efficient way to build the major muscle groups including the arms, back, abdomen, buttocks and legs. You are only required to execute a low impact workout, but it uses various muscles which could develop cardiovascular fitness and strength.

It is the best exercise to make your back stronger. It is also excellent in helping increase your metabolism. It means that you can burn fats and calories efficiently without the joints impacted. Additionally, it has a fitness monitor that allows the use to track stroke count, calories burned, and time of workout. This is a perfect option if you cannot afford to buy other expensive rowers.

Cons

Although it is the best seller rower in the internet, it has its weakness. Since it only uses a single piston being a hydrolic rower, it is not good for heavy use. Some people usually point this as a problem so you have to be careful when using this.

Furthermore, the feet of some users cannot be strapped in continuously. This makes them stop to strap the feet again in position. The seat too may be better for short, not for long workouts.

Since it is a budget machine, you cannot expect much as compared to other costly models. Yet, you still pay for it that is why you don’t want some parts of it to be worthless after a few days of use. This is not good if you seriously need to get back in shape.

Although it has an LCD monitor, it does not have a preset program. You cannot even track your workout performances because it cannot store them.

https://www.amazon.com/Stamina-Body-Glider-Rowing-Machine/dp/B000AMUFPS

2. Rowing Machine with 12 Adjustable Resistance by Sunny Health & Fitness – SF-RW1205

This rowing machine provides for a great value for money because aside from its price, it does not compromise its usability. It is included in the best rowing machine under $500 that you can find in Amazon for only $63.74. You can now perform a low-impact exercise that can work your entire body.

Furthermore, this rowing machine is equipped with a smooth and comfortable running seat that will surely make you on the go. It has pivoting foot plates with foot straps that can be adjusted to give you an added comfort. The Sunny Health & Fitness rowing machine has 12 resistance levels that can easily be adjusted to give you the fitness that you always want to achieve.

Plus, it is made from the most trusted brand, providing people with high quality fitness and health products for almost a decade. It has also an electronic monitor which can display total count, calories burned, and time of workout. This rowing machine could help you get an amazing cardio exercise at home. Doing this at home is more convenient and fun as you can do whatever you want. Plus, it is easy because it is made to be user friendly.

Pros

This rowing machine is made of sturdy and large pedals that will surely bring comfort as you row. Its safety straps will not let you stop from your workout because it can fit well on your toes. It is also made of a high quality non-slip surface and strap which will keep your feet in the pedal throughout your routine. Since it is built to be sturdy, you can perform exercises even if the level of intensity is high.

It has a cushioned seat which gives an ultimate comfort in your rowing experience. Your wellness goals should not be prevented due to the discomfort of most rowing seats. This will help you to workout longer to become stronger.

And since it has an LCD monitor, you can track whether or not you progress. Plus, it has padded handles which makes you perform a wider range of motion. As you journey to your fitness goal, you can challenge yourself with multiple levels of tension.

Cons

Although this has a strong resistance and a large capacity, the only concern about this rowing machine is its monitor. It lacks some advanced features, but it is as expected according to the budget. Furthermore, it only has a short warranty period, so you must be very careful when using this.

https://www.amazon.com/Adjustable-Resistance-Sunny-Health-Fitness/dp/B009QXP77I/ref=sr_1_5?s=exercise-and-fitness&ie=UTF8&qid=1483362271&sr=1-5&keywords=rowing+machine

3. Stamina Air Rower

This wind resistance rowing machine is considered as an ideal tool to workout. It is amazingly affordable provided its usability that you can find it in Amazon for only $299.00. It can give you comfort while working out with its oversized upholstered seat. Aside from that, it also has a seat rail to slide smoothly with an added comfort.

It has a multi-function performance monitor that could allow you to know the distance, speed, time, and calories burned. It has large foot plates as well as large upholstered seat that can fit users of any size. This is just perfect for everyone at any level.

Using a wind resistance device, this air rower could give you a smoot workout. Since it is air resistance, it is uniquely considered as the best rowing machine under $500 and perhaps, the best in its class. It is made with a very sturdy construction of steel frame.

Furthermore, you can store it easily because the frame can be folded easily. It can also be carried smoothly because rolling wheels are placed at the bottom of the rower for you to move and store it wherever you want.

Pros

This item is remarkable for its price, quality, and features. This machine is not only for advanced users, but it is also for intermediates and beginners. When you have this at home, you can perform an intense cardio workout that can sculpt the upper and lower parts of your body.

Perhaps, air resistance is the smoothest resistance that you experience while using a rowing machine. When you work out harder, the resistance grows harder. This is ideal if you want to increase the intensity of your workout as you reach longer.

Since the seat is padded and upholstered, it is nice to sit and workout. Although it is made of sturdy materials, it has a light construction. It means that you will not find it hard to carry it from one place to another. Besides, it has rolling wheels attached at the bottom.

Cons

It is expensive than any other rowing machine that is below $500. However, it also provides for great features and it is made of high quality materials. Moreover, some people complain that it is more noisy compared to other rowing machines.

Some have also a hard time in putting the parts together. It is worth noting that it consists of many parts so it should be assembled patiently.

https://www.amazon.com/Stamina-Air-Rower-Black-Chrome/dp/B003YPZWT2/ref=sr_1_7?s=exercise-and-fitness&ie=UTF8&qid=1483362271&sr=1-7&keywords=rowing+machine

4. Stamina 1215 Orbital Rowing Machine with Free Motion Arms

This budget friendly indoor rower is perfect for your budget because it only costs $231.99. It is included in the best rowing machine under $500 that you can find in Amazon given its price and features. This has a hydraulic resistance that can make you feel like you are in real water.

The major muscles in your body including your shoulder, arms, back, and abs can be built because of its free motion arms. You can tone and burn your muscles while you are performing a cardio workout. It also has a storage profile and a compact footprint that makes them realize some of the item’s attractive features.

Furthermore, if you are saving some space, this rowing machine is just small being 4 feet long. It is also not heavy weighing 52 pounds, which means that you can move and store it easily. It only means that you can put it behind a couch or inside your closet. Plus, it can be assembled in just an easy way.

Pros

If you want to sweat while you are at home, then you can get this rowing machine. The cost of the machine is worth it given its all around, quiet and smooth features.

It can also allow you to perform a free arm orbital motion that will help you move naturally. You can exercise with a full range of arms.

Moreover, rowing machines usually do not have an incline control. Good thing because this item has and this can be done by adjusting the set rail’s tilt. And because it is made of quiet resistance, you can use it anytime of the day. It means that you can watch movies or listen to music without disturbing anyone.

Cons

Although the instruction provided can easily be understood, assembling the rower could consume you a long time. Its assembly time is more than an hour.

The piston used in the rower may give out easily since it is made of the cheapest kind of resistance available. Furthermore, the hydraulic fluid found in the hydraulic resistance may be spilled easily. It can also turn into a sluggish when the temperatures are cold.

The material used in the handle is plastic that is why it can be broken easily. This item is made with durable aluminum materials. Moreover, the monitor seemed to be unreliable sand some machines don’t work already maybe because some wires are loose.

https://www.amazon.com/Stamina-Orbital-Rowing-Machine-Motion/dp/B001HWHY8Q/ref=sr_1_20?s=exercise-and-fitness&ie=UTF8&qid=1483362271&sr=1-20&keywords=rowing+machine

5. Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine

This rowing machine deserves to be the best rowing machine under $500 that you can find in Amazon for only $224.90. This is an affordable magnetic rowing machine that could warrant promising results in few months.

This rowing machine could bring you into a good position. It has eight levels of difficulty that could make your exercise exciting as well as easy and convenient. This is the newest standard that will fit your home. It will allow you to work on your cardio anytime that you want.

Because it has an LCD monitor, the count, calories and time, you can easily track your body’s progress. It can also be read easily so you will not find it hard understanding information. You can also change your workout from time to time as it has 8 levels of tension. All you need to do is to simply twist the tension knob to either increase or decrease the resistance of the magnet. Since the intensity also changes, it will become a challenge for your fitness journey. Of course, it can also be used by some to improve their skills.

The seats will bring comfort to you because it is fully padded. It means that you can work out for a longer period. Its handlebars also consist of non-slip grip which allows you to use it without worrying to stop. The large anti-slip foot pedals are perfect for everyone even if oversized.

Pros

Since it is a magnetic rowing machine, it will make you experience a realistic and smooth motion. With a total of 8 levels of resistance, anyone can use this from beginners to pros. You are only required to turn the knob on the panel so that you can adjust it depending on the level you wish to execute.

Furthermore, this rowing machine is not noisy when used. It can allow you to row even if other people are still sleeping in your house. You can also watch movies or listen to music while you are getting back in shape. It is also made of good quality materials which mean that it can withstand the long years of use.

Cons

This item lacks the advanced features of modern monitors. However, given its price, it is already expected that its feature is just simple.

Furthermore, its warranty period is just short so, you should be very careful when using this rowing machine. Moreover, it is not backlit so it’s hard to see the display in low light areas.

https://www.amazon.com/Adjustable-Resistance-Sunny-Health-Fitness/dp/B017HSNIEW/ref=sr_1_3?s=exercise-and-fitness&ie=UTF8&qid=1483362271&sr=1-3&keywords=rowing+machine

Water Rowing Machine – A Buyers Guide

January 4th, 2017

Water Rowing Machine Buyer’s Guide

We live in an age of fitness. During the last twenty years, technology has slowly creeped into our lives requiring us to either sit, or stand in one place for long periods of time. Ironically, with the convenience that technology gives us, there have been more demand made on us with technology. We work longer hours while our bodies remain inert.

Our ancestors did not have Wi-Fi, smartphones or cars. A rustic lifestyle required long hours filled with rugged exercise for their bodies, walking, carrying, lifting, almost constant movement. Associety, has moved from a rustic to an urban lifestyle, we have moved from the farm and outdoor work, to the office and indoor work at desks with computers. While our means of survival have changed, our bodies haven’t. Our muscles still need to be used, our heart and cardiovascular system works best when our bodies get the workout it was built for.

Our exercise routines today include jogging, which, while it works the body and heart, is highly impactful and could cause harm our legs and knees in the long term. We seek a workout that impacts our bodies the least while giving us the workout we need. Enter rowing machines.

There are now on the market, two kinds of rowing machines: the conventional mechanical rowing machines seen at gyms, and the water rowing machine, which simulates natural movement through water. Rowing machines are an aerobic exercise, and can help with weight loss. It gives us an upper and lower body workout, and it increases endurance. It is an excellent method of cardio fitness. And, unlike jogging and other types of high-impact exercise, a rowing machine lets our bodies get the workout it needs with low-impact, natural movement that provides even higher benefits for us.

What the advantages of water rowing machines over convention mechanical rowers? Water rowing machines simulate natural rowing, so there’s no slippage, jerkiness or jarring. Like natural rowing in a lake, stream or river, there is a paddle immersed in water, so there is no mechanical feel during the exercise. This helps to lesson injury that could occur with mechanical rowers: the immersed paddle provides natural movement, and an even stroke, lessening the risk of injury. The work is spread more evenly over the muscle groups. The appropriate muscles respond in proportion to their strength, reducing the risk of injury.

Imagine the enjoyment and the relaxation you feel when paddling through a calm lake, when all is quiet. You feel your paddles gently moving the water as your boat moves forward in the lake. As you row, you decide you want to move faster, so you paddle harder and faster. You begin to feel your body’s resistance to your rowing, and your heart rate increases as your arms work the oars, moving forward to back. You become aware that you are having an aerobic workout, improving the oxygen flow through your cardiovascular system. As you row faster and harder, your endurance increase, so the next time you take your boat out onto the lake, it will be easier to go further, even in the rougher and more challenging waters of a river. You feel your whole upper and lower body getting into the demands of rowing as you move quickly though the water. After a while, you have established the best workable speed and rhythm for yourself, and if it is slow, it is still having a positive impact on your cardiovascular system.

But you know that attaining a faster rhythm and speed will reap the best benefits for the body and for your well-being. With water rowing machines, the exerciser has more control of their speed, making the workout a more personal experience. You don’t need to adapt to the water rowing machine, the machine adapts to you. If you are beginner at exercising, a water rowing machine is a great choice because it allows you to start at a speed that works best for you. You can begin paddling gently through the water and over time, increase your resistance. And as you continue your exercise regimen and are ready to take on a more rigorous challenge. You can determine the speed at which to go. The water rowing machine will respond to whatever speed you wish to go.

Back in the days before technology, even before the industrial age, most people lived in rural areas instead of urban areas. These people were primarily farmers, and most of the economy was based on what farmers produced and sold. Another part of the economy also based on food production were fisherman.

Even earlier than an agricultural economy, there were tribal communities which were self-subsistent. To obtain the food to feed the members of their community, they had to hunt and fish. The fisherman mainly used canoes. The best rowers were chosen to row out to the places in the lakes and rivers near the community and, with large nets, collect the fish. Sometimes they rowed in their own canoes, and other times in tandem with other rowers who piloted larger canoes. If in tandem, they rowed quickly to their destination in the water, which could be miles or knots distance from their settlement. It was necessary for each rower to row at the same speed as the other rower. Their bodies quickly adjusted to the established speed, as they effortlessly reached their destination and collected food.

Today we benefit from communications and media technology that our ancestors could never even dream of. Yet this technology has taken a toll on our bodies. While we live in the 21st century, our bodies have not evolved to a sedentary existence. Exercise outside our work is now required to keep our bodies fit and functioning properly. Exercise not only keeps our bodies fit, it also greatly reduces stress and improves feelings of well-being. This is what our bodies tell us: Use us, work us hard, we need you to challenge our muscles and our heart systems! If you work us, we will reward you!

Water rowing machines simulate natural movement, are low-impact, and are an excellent source of cardio fitness. Which brands have been found to be the best water rowers on the market? We’ve researched and found five brands that have been tested and found to be the best water rowing machines.

1. WaterRower

The WaterRower has a flywheel design, which is unique because it reproduces the exact physical dynamics of a boat moving through water. Not only does it provide your needed physical exercise regimen, it is also a pleasurable experience exercising, as it accurately replicates the enjoyment of rowing.

The amount of exercise you wish to put into your rowing regimen depends on you, and not the WaterRower. With WaterRower, you can gently paddle through the water, or give it all you have for a more extreme workout. If you row harder, you will go faster; if you row easier, like through a calm stream, you go slower. What’s nice about the WaterRower is that it’s a self-paced exercise. So, for example, you can begin your workout slowly and, as your resistance improve, you begin to row harder, improving your cardiovascular fitness. The WaterRower lets you be in control, so regardless of your physical health when you begin with the WaterRower, you won’t have to adapt to the machine, the machine adapts to you. When you can control your workout, you will keep to it much longer, because you specify your starting point.

Rowing is also proven to be the best exercise for arthritis. It is easy on the joints, giving them a fuller range of motion. It does this with a minimum of impact. Rowing is great for joint sufferers, and remember, you control the speed and the amount of impact you wish to put into your exercise. Regardless of the speed you choose, your joints and body will benefit greatly from the work you put into your routine.

2. First Degree Fluid Rowers

Water rowers in general use something called the Cube Rule. The Cube Rule means that, to go twice as fast through water, you need to row eight times as fast. Water rowers are less impact machines, so doubling your speed will be easier and less impactful to your body. The First Degree fluid rower water rowing machine has Fluid Technology, which is built into their water rowing machine. As you build your resistance and work harder, the fluid resistance unit responds, without the slack or stoppage that you will feel with mechanical rowers.

The unit containing the water of the water rowing machine is contains eight liters of water, with a measuring line on it to make sure it’s filled with the precise amount of water. It comes as well with tablets that are dropped in the water to prevent fungus and algae growth.

There are twenty different levels of water resistance preset with the First-DegreeFluid Rower, and it also comes with a monitor that shows your elapsed time as well as a pacing indicator, and an indicator showing how many calories per hour you are burning. The monitor also comes with a USB option, so you can interact with other sources, and with other people using the water rower.

3. H2O Fitness RX-750 Water Rower

The H2O Fitness rower is also a machine designed to mimic actual rowing. The water tank is a polycarbonate with an internal paddle. It is ergonomically designed for comfort and for increased exercise benefits. When your boy is placed in a natural position for rowing, there will be no unnatural stress and you will reap higher rewards. If you are serious about your workout, you could not do better than to use a water rower. With the RX-750, you can monitor your heart rate, and how many stokes you do per minute. So, each time you exercise you can determine what rate you achieved in your last workout, and then set a goal to meet or exceed that level. The display with this model is oversized, so it is easy to read so you can continue your workout uninterrupted while getting the vial information about time of exercise, distance travelled, calories burned and heart rate. The footrests pivot, so it is easy to adjust, and can be sized to fit children’s feet as well. In general, the RX-750 provides a relaxing exercise experience.

Modern technology has reached the point where it strives to duplicate our natural environment. State of the art rowing machines now mimic rowing naturally through water, which makes the most sense. These water rowers being reviewed reflect the most modern discoveries about health and exercise. Here is one more water rower we’ve reviewed that provides the most natural form of exercise while allowing the body to row through water, as reflected in nature.

4. Life Fitness Water Rower

The Life Fitness Water Rower emphasizes benefits to your cardiovascular system. Designed in gym-style, or in natural wood versions for the home, this water rower can be used regardless of fitness level.

The Life Fitness Water Rower comes in two models, the Row GX Trainer and the Row HX Trainer. The GX Trainer comes with a dial for easy adjustment, and 16 different resistance options. The GX Trainer is the model which is used in health and athletic clubs throughout the world. It is a compact model, so it is easy to move around the house. In moving through water, it has fluid technology which naturally duplicates the feel of rowing through water.

The HX Trainer is a natural wood design. Its wood aesthetic means it can be used in any room, matching the design of the room you choose. It has a dial, like the GC Trainer, and offers four different levels of resistance. It’s important to note that you can change resistance levels without having to fill or empty water from the water console. When stored upright, the HX trainer is under seven feet tall.

If you’re going to spend time and exert the effort to exercise, and we know today that cardio fitness is so important, it is best to consider using a machine that gives us an exercise experience that has the lowest impact on our bodies. Water rowers are here, and they meet this demand.

What Are The Top Rated Rowing Machines in 2016?

September 3rd, 2016

Top Rated Rowing Machines

top-rated-rowing-machines-277x300Looking for the top rated rowing machines? Well here they are. Like any product you’re interested in buying, it always pays off to understand what you’re getting and doing some research. Rowing machines are no different, specially because they’re costly investments that you expect to last over a long period of time.See the top rated rowing machines now

For that purpose, taking time to look through the ratings and reviews, and try out the different products available is key. We’ve done that for you so you won’t have to spend hours and hours of your time. And if you want to know which of the models have been given the best ratings by users and critics here they are.

Concept2 Model D

Concept2-Model-D-300x150Atop our list of the top rated rowing machines is the Concept2 Model D ergometer. This comes as no surprise as anyone who’s serious about their rowing or wants to get the best piece of equipment that can keep them ready to perform on the boat once the off season is over looks to this erg to keep them competitive.

With a 4.9 rating that just misses out on the perfect 5.0 score, the Model D has over 370 very satisfied customers on Amazon.com. This indoor rower comes with a heavy duty frame that supports 500 lbs. easy with the ability to hold more. Designed for crew members, it has a long monorail that glides effortless so you get to execute your rowing stroke smoothly. Powering the machine is its air powered flywheel that is connected to a chain mechanism that users pull on using an ergonomically designed handle.

Three major reasons why the Model D is a top rated product that sits atop the best sellers list is are its ability to closely simulate rowing with oars in the water, an industrial grade build that can withstand constant repetitive use and an exceptionally feature rich performance monitor that logs all training details that you can analyze later on.

Concept2 Model E

Concept2-Model-E-300x233Next on our top rated rowing machine reviews is the Concept2 Model E indoor row machine. This is successor of the highly successful Model D mentioned above. With a high user approved score of 4.7 from a total of 5.0, the Model E builds on where the Model D leaves off.

It has a number of changes that improve the overall user experience, including an upgraded PM4 monitor and nickel plated chain that pulls the flywheel, as the brand continues to improve its products not just to cater to elite athletes or young rowers but also those just looking to get full body cardiovascular workout to get or stay in shape.

Built on a base that’s 6 inches higher than the Model D, it is much easier to get on and off this newer model since the height (20 inches) is similar to sitting down on a chair. The damper that powers the Model E is similar to that of its predecessor using a braking mechanism based on air resistance. In this setup, airflow controls how much resistance the user feels. It also comes with a damper setting that lets users control how much air the vent will allow in.

To limit the noise made by air resistance rowing machines, Concept2 has installed an extra shroud inside the housing. Eight feet long and two feet in width, it is able to accommodate tall and short users as well as those that are just starting out and those who have achieved Masters rowing status.

Velocity Fitness CHR-2001

Velocity-CHR-2001-Rowing-Machine-300x300
Similar to the two previous models mentioned above, the Velocity Fitness CHR-2001 is a folding rowing machine that can be broken down quickly and conveniently after working out to take up the least amount of space when not in use. From a long 80 inches, its size is reduced to almost half that at 43 inches in length when it is time to put it away.

The CHR-2001 is a good option for those who are looking for a more affordable ergometer that doesn’t
cost $1000, but offers a better rowing experience and more features than the low cost budget rowers. Built to cater to anyone looking for a good endurance and strength workout, the CHR-2001 uses its DMC (Drum Magnetic Control) resistance system that allows users to select for 8 varying difficulty settings. Because it uses a magnetic brake similar to those in exercise bikes and other exercise machines, it is very quiet and doesn’t make squeaking noised like hydraulic rowers or the loud wind fan sounds or air rowers.

Equipped with twelve workout routines including some pre-set and others you can customize, it allows you to keep track of how hard your heart is pumping via a receiver that you can strap on to your chest. With a 275 pound user weight limit and a frame that’s durable and won’t wobble during workouts this is one of the best mid range rowing machines available.

WaterRower Natural

WaterRower-Natural-Row-Machine-300x188WaterRowers are unique in that they allow your senses to get that feeling of being in the water. This is what makes the WaterRower Natural indoor rower one of the top rated rowing machines.

With a polycarbonate tank that lets you see the water, users can relish the calming water sound that’s made each time you go through a rowing stroke. This water resistance rowing machine uses a series of straps and paddles to cut through the water like oars do when rowing on an open lake or river.

Another major feature of the WaterRower Natural series its is extremely elegant outer wood finish. With great attention to detail, it has a solid ash and stained honey oak finish exterior that serves three very useful purposes. One is to provide its extremely good looks. Second is the extreme durability and third its noise dampening properties which make it quiet enough you can row in your bedroom without waking anyone up.

It’s Your Move Now

Indoor rowers are different from many of the more conventional home cardio equipment available like exercise bikes, treadmills and even elliptical machines. While these exercise machines allow us to use our legs the way we’re accustomed to rowing machines don’t which is why many people tend to shun away from them thinking that they are difficult and don’t want to look embarrassed not knowing how to operate one.

However, these machines are one of the most effective ways to workout your entire body without placing unnecessary stress on your knees, ankles and joints. If you’re on the market for one of these, the top rated rowing machines listed here will give you a workout you’ll enjoy.

Check out the rowing products that have 4 star ratings and above

What Is The Best Compact Rowing Machine?

July 3rd, 2016

Compact Rowing Machine

Not everyone has the luxury of getting a large piece of exercise equipment for their home. For this reason, a compact rowing machine is something that many people opt to choose over those that are larger. Depending on how the interior of your home is designed and how much free space you have at your convenience two issues to consider are how much space do you have available for your workouts and where can you store the equipment after your workouts so that they don’t get in the way nor do they mess up the decorative look of your home.

While there are smaller machines, we will only consider those that are worth your money, not the products that will quickly break down or not effective in giving you a good workout.

Check out the top compact rowing machines on Amazon.com

Stamina 1050

Stamina-1050-Body-Trac-300x206A combination of affordability and portability, the Stamina Body Trac Glider costs $110 and is among the rowing machines that take up the least amount of space. The oars fold inward reducing its width allowing you to store it upright on a corner of the closet or lying flat under the bed.

Simple to use and assemble, it doesn’t take much time to start rowing on this machine. The Stamina 1050 is a no frills rower that gives you the basic performance monitor that measures time and distance rowed along with calories used up and the number of strokes. The moving parts include the hydraulic cylinder with adjustable resistance, the joints of the oars and the sliding seat. This makes it easy to keep the machine maintained.

Stamina 1215

Stamina-1215-300x295Another compact rower is the Stamina 1215 rowing machine. At 47 pounds and carrying a small footprint, it is easy to transport from one area of the home to another in case you want to store it in a different area from where you workout. The quiet hydraulic pistons and rolling seat allow you to listen to music or watch television as you exercise without having to turn up the volume just to overcome the machine’s noise.

While the Stamina 1215 comes with free motion arms that let you move your arms in circular motion during the recovery phase, you can opt to use the more standard indoor rower rowing stroke of just moving the arms forwards and backwards.

Among the most popular rowing machines due to its affordable price, performance and build quality the Stamina is ideal if you want an easy way to work all your major body parts without engaging in impact exercises.

Kettler Favorit

Kettler-Favorit-Rower-300x201Four feet long and two and a half feet wide the German built Kettle Favorit compact rower is another compact rowing machine that uses hydraulic resistance. Like the two above, it takes up very little space and weighs less than 55 pounds making them easier to move when the need calls for it.

One of the things you’ll notice with the Favorit is it comes with additional padding both on the saddle and the grips, which are two of the three places your body comes in contact with the machine. Because rowing is a sport that requires a lot of repetition the extra comfort really helps in preventing blisters (for the grips) and an uncomfortable bottom (for the seat).

While assembly is estimated at 35 minutes by the manufacturer, it can take a bit more time since the users manual doesn’t come with the most effective instructions. It contains a lot of images which is useful but seems to be a bit lacking in terms of text, which means you’ll need to do some figuring out at times.

Lifespan RW1000

LifeSpan-Fitness-RW1000-300x220The longest among our compact rowing machines at seven and a half feet long, it is compact because while long, it does not take up that much space since it is only 1.5 feet wide and less than 2 feet tall. Unlike the previous compact rowing machines mentioned in this review, which are shorter in length but wider on the sides, this one fits in places that those can’t and vice versa. The real issue now depends on which type of space do you have more available in your room or home.

The reason for the difference is that the Lifespan RW100 is a magnetic rowing machine. Instead of using hydraulic cylinders which are often positioned on the sides of the machine, the magnetic braking system is often located in front of the device causing the difference in length and with. Also because of this instead of pulling two separate oar levers or handles magnetic rowers use a T-bar handle where both hands pull on a single line that’s connected to the braking mechanism hidden in the housing.

Smooth and quiet, it pulls on a 16.5 pound flywheel, has 5 resistance levels and displays number of strokes, time, distance and calories burned. When folded the RW1000, takes up the size of a dining room chair with length of 34 inches, width of 19 inches and 64 inches in height.

Stamina Air Rower

Stamina-Air-Rower-300x222One of the more affordable air rowing machines, the Stamina Air Rowing Machine spans a little less than six and a half feet long. It is one and a half feet wide and less than two feet high. Almost similar in stature as the Lifespan RW1000 above, the major difference between the two is this device uses air resistance. So instead of a magnetic brake, it uses a fan that gets turned as the user pulls on the handle. Wind generated by the flywheels fan blades provides the resistance for the user.

Comparing the two, air rowers get noisier once it reaches a certain speed just like electric fans get louder at higher speeds. Magnetic rowers on the other hand stay quiet all throughout. The other main effect is with wind resistance, how much drag caused by the airflow is related to how much effort you put into rowing, the harder you row the more difficult it gets much like in open water rowing. As for the magnetic brake systems, the machine gives you the same amount of pressure depending on the level setting you put the switch on, which isn’t as realistic from a rowing point of view but may be more appealing for those who want a consistent workout.

Priced at $300, this is a low cost alternative to similar air rowers that often cost closer to $1000. It also does a good job folding up to a much smaller four feet length when it’s time to put it aside.

Check out the top compact rowing machines on Amazon.com

Best Weightlifting Shoes Buyers Guide

June 5th, 2016

[vc_row rehub_container="true"][vc_column][vc_column_text]If you go to the gym from time to time or are planning to start doing so, you need to invest in the best weight lifting shoes. Just like football, basketball and other sports have shoes that are specifically designed for them, weight lifting also needs specific type of shoes to improve performance and prevent injury. Do not be one of those people who think that it is okay to wear just any type of shoe to the gym. You may end up injuring yourself badly.

Benefits of Weightlifting Shoes

There are quite a number of benefits that you will enjoy when you buy the best weightlifting shoes, namely:

1. Increased Stability

Since weightlifting shoes have a raised heel, they will increase your stability while lifting weights in the gym. You will be able to bend the ankle joints while your feet are kept flat on the floor. When you bend your ankle joints like that, you will be able to descend to a lower height, something that will enable you to lift heavier weights easily. You will not lose balance since your feet will be kept flat on the ground.

2. Reduced Risk of Injury

Weightlifting shoes will also prevent harm to your body. When you are not stable while lifting weights, damage can occur easily. With a lot of pressure exerted on your body, doing exercises such as jerks can cause tearing of your body ligaments if your body does not have a proper base to rest on.

3. Ease of Lifting

The weightlifting shoes are designed to promote fuller activation of the body’s lower muscles. They feature hard soles that do not allow the force used for lifting weights to be dissipated against the floor. They instead cause the kinetic energy that is generated by the feet to be utilized for lifting weights. They will help you use all the force that is produced to lift the weights.

4. Good Grip

The best weightlifting shoes feature a sole that is made from crepe or neoprene to prevent you from losing balance or slipping when you are lifting weights. They are also flexible in nature to allow your feet to bend and straighten quickly when you are exercising.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Best 5 Weightlifting Shoes

Adidas Performance Men’s Powerlift 2.0 Trainer Shoe

If you train for powerlifting, this is an excellent pair of weightlifting shoes that you will not regret buying. It is specifically great for high bar and front squatting. The lower heel is very comfortable. You will not get arch pain in your feet after exercising. Another thing that you will love about this shoe is the fact that it is extremely light. It will not feel like a brick on your foot. You will feel nimble but stable when you are wearing it.

There is very little adjustment you need to make in order to feel comfortable when you step back while carrying the bar on your back. You will just love this shoe by simply looking at it because it is well made and features beautiful colors. It is available in a variety of different colors that you can choose from.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text][content-egg module=Amazon][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Inov-8 Men’s Fastlift 325 Cross-Trainer Shoe

This is probably one of the lightest weightlifting shoes you will ever find on the market. Apart from being light, this shoe is also very flexible. The meta-flex technology that it features in the forefoot allows for more comfortable movements. You can easily transition from weightlifting to other movements in the gym while wearing it. You will also love the incredible stability that this shoe features.

The power-truss technology and external heel cage that it is made of provides a stable base for weight lifting and delivers lateral stability. Other features worth mentioning are the met-cradle lacing system and straps that provide mid-foot lockdown and ensure the biggest lift.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Reebok Men’s R CrossFit Lifter 2.0 Training Shoe

This is a really nice weightlifting shoe that features a dual lace-up design, a textured upper and hook and loop closures. You will feel secure in your balance when doing lifts like deadlifts and squats. It features very solid heels that prevent you from leaning forward too much because of the fear of falling backwards when you are lifting heavier weights. It will give you the balance and confidence you need to lift your weights properly.

This shoe is also very roomy in the toebox, something that makes it very comfortable when you are wearing it. As long as you choose the right size, you will not have any regrets purchasing it.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

New Balance Men’s MX20BS4 Cross Minimus Training Shoe

You need to buy this shoe if you are looking for a nice weightlifting shoe that can stand up to your crossfit WOD. It features an outsole that is constructed from vibram which happens to be one of most durable shoe materials around.

The upper part of the shoe features a no-sew mesh design that provides excellent ventilation and keeps your feet comfortable even when you are wearing it for long. Unlike most weightlifting shoes on the market, this one fits true to size. The material that it is constructed from is very light and durable. Your feet will not feel too heavy when you are wearing it.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Nike Men’s Train Prime Iron DF Cross Training Shoe

There will be no regrets after buying this shoe because it does everything that you would expect the best weightlifting shoes to do. Whether it is high impact cardio, squats, lateral agility, burpees or jumping, you can rest assured that you are covered when you are wearing this shoe.

It features thick cushioning that keeps your foot comfortable. It is super light and nice looking. It is one of those shoes that you would want to buy immediately you lay your eyes on them.

The rubber sole provides excellent grip while the lightweight mesh improves its breathability. In the forefoot, there are flywire cables that add dynamic support.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

In Conclusion

When buying the above-mentioned weightlifting shoes, do not take it as a waste of your money. The money that you will invest in them will be well worth it considering the benefits that you will get. The difference that they can make to your weightlifting experience and the amount of weight that you will be able to significantly lift will be dramatic.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]