Rowing machine exercise is an easy way to get in shape, to train your entire body, to lose weight and gain muscle and leave your body feeling great. Proper rowing machine exercise is easy to master and is relatively injury-risk free. However, performing rowing machine exercise incorrectly can leave you susceptible to a variety of injuries including undue stresses and strains of your lower back muscles. Here are some do's and don'ts for rowing machine exercise to ensure you not only get the maximum benefits of the workout but keep yourself healthy and injury free.
1. Do properly adjust the rowing machine
Before beginning your rowing machine exercise you should properly adjust all of the settings to ensure comfort, good form and being secured in the machine. These include foot straps to keep your feet and body in place and any other seat adjustments that may be available to make you more comfortable and fully extended.
2. Don't lean too far back
While performing rowing machine exercise your back should maintain a natural position and stay relatively straight. Leaning too far back can stress your lower and middle back muscles and leave you performing the exercise incorrectly and inefficiently.
3. Don't lean too far forward
The opposite is also an incorrect way of going through your rowing machine exercise. Leaning too far forward could be caused by not adjusting the seats properly and leaving you reaching too far, or as leaning too far back, can be caused from being tired or simply unaware of proper rowing machine exercise form. Keep your head looking forward and keep your back in a natural, upright position to minimize injuries.
4. Do use the full range of motion
This means incorporating all of the needed muscle groups (legs, back, core and arms) and completing the exercise from beginning to end. A beginner could rely too much on solely their arms, merely pulling the handle to their body. You actually want to push off with your legs, while pulling the handle back with your arms, using your back for power and your core for stability.
5. Do keep your arms straight and palms down
The proper grip for rowing machine exercise is with your palms facing down, or depending on the machine, your palms facing each other. Your arms should also stay in a straight line of motion. Pulling up with your arms, down, or curving them in any way can put unnecessary stresses on your back muscles and make you lose proper form.
Following these 5 simple do's and don'ts will ensure that your rowing machine exercise sessions are completed effectively, efficiently and safely.
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