Become stronger, row faster, avoid injuries
Form improves function
Poor technique will not only take its toll on your rowing performance but can also be the cause of rowing injuries such as low back or knee pain. Proper rowing form will allow you to use your body efficiently, which will make you faster and increase your endurance.
Including exercises that improve your mobility can improve rowing performance as well as prevent injuries. Muscles that are typically tight in rowers include the muscles of the upper and middle back, the hip flexors, the glutes, the calves, or the ankles.
Poor mobility of the upper and middle back can not only compromise but increase the risk of shoulder injuries.
Restricted range of motion of the glutes and hips can limit the power of your leg drive and the reach during the recovery phase. Apart from that, tightness in these areas can cause back pain.
Poor flexibility in the calves or ankles can compromise your leg drive. It might also lead to knee pain, ankle pain, and shin splints.
Foam rolling, stretching, or yoga can help to reduce tightness in these areas.
Try our FREE stretch class with Hallie Savage:
Strengthen your legs for better rowing performance
The muscles of the legs are the strongest and largest muscle group in the body. They initiate the rowing drive and do most of the work during this movement. Rowers with weak legs will sacrifice performance during the catch as this is the time where the highest leg force is required. Apart from that, using the power of your legs will decrease the workload of your upper body.
Including exercises, such as squats and lunges in your training regimen can, therefore, help to make you a faster, more powerful rower. For exercise ideas, check out the Regatta workouts that include strength training.
Core training can help you to prevent rowing injuries
A strong back and core are essential to increase power through the stroke. The "core" is generally defined as a group of muscles consisting of the lumbopelvic region, the hips, the abdomen, and the lower back.
If your core is weak, other muscles have to compensate which compromises your overall performance while increasing the risk of sports injuries.
Core strength is especially important during the finish: it supports your rowing form, which will make your movement efficient. Apart from that, core training might help you to avoid low back injuries.
Great exercises to improve core strength include planks, side planks, bird dogs, dead bugs, or hip bridges.
Include High-Intensity Interval Training (HITT)
Including HIIT can help you to take your performance to the next level. Research shows that a mix of HIIT and Steady State Cardio (SSC) training can help to improve overall cardiovascular capacity more than SSC training sessions alone.
You can do HIIT workouts on any cardio machine or using conditioning exercises such as burpees, jump squats, climbers, etc.
Click HERE to learn more about the benefits of HIIT workouts and why HIIT and indoor rowing are a perfect workout combination.
Plan recovery days
Listening to your body and adding recovery days to your training plan is crucial to improve your performance and health. If you push your body too hard, you increase your risk of overtraining, which can lead to poor immune function, depression, insomnia, and weight gain.
Recovery days don't necessarily mean that you have to lie on the couch. You can try a gentle yoga class, go for a walk, or do mobility training.
Join classes featuring expert instructors who guide and inspire you through on and off machine workouts. Our portable iOS app combines streaming HD video, heart-pumping music, real-time metrics, and a competitive leaderboard. www.teamregatta.com.