Do Rowing Machines Burn Fat?

Happy woman using rowing machine with friends

Rowing machines provide your body with a low-impact workout that closely resembles sitting in a boat and moving paddles through water. If you want to exercise to lose weight, you have to do a form of exercise that raises your heart rate and causes you to break a sweat. Rowing satisfies these requirements without impacting your joints.

Aerobic Exercise

Aerobic exercise involves moving the limbs in an repetitive motion for an extended time frame. Rowing burns fat if you exercise long enough and on a regular basis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends doing 2 hours and 30 minutes of aerobics each week to maintain your weight, and you can increase the intensity and duration of each rowing session if you want to shed excess pounds. Rowing can burn more than 300 calories in just 30 minutes according to Harvard Health Letter, making it an effective exercise for fat loss.

Faster Results

Interval training is performed by alternating your rowing intensity back and forth between high and low. This method boosts your fat-burning progress. The rowing machine comes equipped with a resistance adjustment. Either turn up the resistance, or row at a faster pace for your high-intensity intervals. As you get into better shape, increase the speed and resistance of your workouts. When doing interval training, start with a light warmup, and make your low-intensity periods twice as long as your high-intensity periods. For example, row hard for 30 seconds and row lightly for 60 seconds.

Benefits of Muscle Recruitment

The rowing machine works your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, latissimus dorsi, biceps, trapezius, deltoids and abs. All this muscle recruitment will give your metabolism a boost, which will help you burn fat throughout the day. By increasing the resistance, you will tax your muscles with greater force and increase this effect.

Tips to Consider

Following a regular rowing schedule is beneficial for fat loss, but eating healthy is also an important part of the fat-burning process. A daily reduction of 500 calories will promote about 1 pound of weight loss per week, so choose snacks with low or zero calories, such as apples, celery sticks and carrots, and trade grease-laden processed foods for steamed vegetables, lean meats, low-fat dairy products, whole grains and legumes.