All exercise equipment will have cardio effects and benefits in different ways. In order to choose the best cardio machine, you need to first decide on what you want to achieve from your work outs. It may be that you want to lose weight, to tone up your body or to just get fit.
If you’re a runner, for example, an exercise bike or treadmill might be what you need. If you want an all over fitness with good cardio results then a rowing machine is probably going to be best for you. There’s a huge choice of makes and types so it’s best to do some research to find what’s best for you.
The aim of a cardio work out is to raise the heart rate, as this happens the blood gets more oxygen and is pumped around the body, raising the heart rate and making the muscles work harder. So which is the best cardio machine?
Deciding on the Best Cardio Machine
A rowing machine is a more advanced cardio machine than other types. This is because of its ability to work your upper and lower body at the same time. You push with your legs and pull with your arms to get a coordinated exercise for both the upper and lower body. You work most of your muscles this way, between 80% and 90% of them. It also helps you to burn a lots of calories so is good for losing weight.
Those who aren’t fit to begin with, sometimes find a rower uncomfortable. For those who are overweight, which often causes back problems in itself, there is the danger of further damage to the back. Take a look at our article, Can Home Rowing be Harmful? Moderation is the key because this exercise involves doing the same movements all the time so if you do too much you might cause imbalances or even posture problems.
A lot of people don’t understand how to use a rowing machine correctly. Yes, there is a right way! Although they do often have resistance controls, rowing isn’t really meant to be a resistance exercise. You end up pulling harder with your arms, which might be ok for building arm muscles but there’s more to rowing than that.
Probably the best thing about doing a rowing machine cardio exercise is that you have control over how intense it is. If you row faster, you increase the intensity of the cardio work out. Now that may seem obvious, but it shows that it’s about more than just resistance.
Rather than going too hard at it, it’s better to concentrate on your posture, making sure you’re sitting properly on the seat as upright as possible and also making your stroke better. A good way to increase your stroke is to try to beat your personal best each time. That way you won’t be pushing yourself too hard and being at risk of harm.
You need to give yourself a break, so row three to five times a week with each session being between 10 to 30 minutes duration to begin with, depending which level you’re at. One really good way to exercise on a rower is to do high intensity interval training. This is where you alternate a burst of intense rowing with a burst of much less intense rowing. To do it that way is very good for calorie burning.
You tend to burn more calories from rowing and you even continue to burn them for a time after the work out is finished. The reason for this is because of the way the muscles have been pumped up. One doctor from The American College of Sports Medicine described the rowing machine as a “total fitness machine” and that it’s easily possible to burn 700 to 750 calories an hour. You can read the article from Reuters here.
According to the American Heart Association, you should try and reach your target heart rate during exercise. You should be able to do this through rowing with benefits to your heart, lungs and general circulation. Furthermore at worldlifeexpectancy.com, they published an article, Row Your Way to a Longer Life!
Rowing For Cardio
There’s a lot of choice when it comes to cardio exercise, whether it be a treadmill, exercise bike etc., but it does seem a rower is probably best. Strangely they tend to be a little underrated at gyms, perhaps because many don’t understand how they work and the superior benefits to health they can have.
When deciding on a home rower there’s so much choice, so make sure you read our article, Best Home Rowing Machine 2017 to get more information. You don’t need to spend a fortune to begin with, a little bit of research can make all the difference.
Remember, if you’re looking to improve your health and fitness through cardiovascular exercise, take things steady. You may have the best cardio machine, but you should follow a fitness program designed for you, or get professional help from a fitness instructor and you’re highly advised to seek medical advice as well.