Indoor rowers have become popular as a training tool for rowing as well as for exercising. Indoor rowing benefits the cardiovascular system and it takes anywhere between 20 – 40 minutes to do a workout.
While this is not a high impact exercise, proper precaution needs to be taken to reduce incidents that can result in injury. However, as with any exercise, rowing requires the knowledge of technique. Using the proper rowing technique helps lower the risk of injury as well as helps achieve the required rowing goals.
Whether you row to improve your fitness or train for outdoor rowing, observing safety and taking precautions is the prerequisite for any successful exercise.
Following the seven tips below will help you use your indoor rower safely with the minimal chance of injury.
Use the Indoor Rower in the recommended manner
Indoor rowers are designed to improve the work of the cardiovascular system. You may be tempted to add other attachments for other exercises though. However, using attachments that are not recommended may expose you to harm and therefore should be avoided. Attachments that have not been recommended might also damage other parts of your indoor rower, causing it to malfunction; another reason you should avoid them.
While indoor rowers can be used by people of all ages including children, it is paramount that you keep children under strict supervision. Indoor rowers are made of many moving parts which may be a health hazard for children if they are not well supervised when using them. Also, you should guide children on the proper rowing technique which will help prevent strain and injury.
Never let the handle fly into the chain guide
It is important to place the handle fly into the handle hooks or against the chain guide before letting go. This not only ensures safe operation but also reduces the risk of injury as a result of the handle coming into contact with the moving chain and other parts. Operating your indoor rower safely includes following such directions as storing the handle fly in the required manner.
Use both hands and pull straight
Rowing with one hand is dangerous and can result in injury. Furthermore, you should never twist the chain or pull sideways. For safe operation, pull straight back and use both hands. Pulling with both hands also helps protect your upper back from injury and fatigue allowing you to exercise more comfortably. This is part of using the rower in the recommended way and results in better workouts and training.
Don’t use loose clothing when operating the rower
To avoid injury, ensure that you keep loose clothing as far away from seat rollers as possible. They may get caught up with the chain and other moving parts which may result in injury. In addition, if you are supervising small children on the rower, make sure they don’t have their fingers on the seat rollers as well to prevent injuries.
Perform proper and regular maintenance
Indoor rowers contain many moving parts which will, therefore, require regular maintenance. Do not use the rower if there are any loose parts that need to be fixed. Most rowers come with a manual which describes how maintenance should be carried out, which you should follow every time you are maintaining your indoor rower. Regular maintenance will prevent the rower parts from rusting, wearing out and malfunctioning so that you can carry on with your training and exercises comfortably.
Lock the rower before moving it
As mentioned above, indoor rowers have many moving parts. If you want to move it safely from one area to another, you must ensure that the frame lock is in a locked position. This is the only way you can guarantee to move the rower safely without causing injury or damage to the moving parts. It is also advisable to seek help when moving the rower because it is bulky. Having a pair of hands to help you move guarantees better safety than doing it alone.
These are just but a few safety tips designed to make your rowing as safe as possible. Using common sense most of the time will ensure you stay safe while you train or exercise on your indoor rower. It is important to pace yourself because indoor rowing is primarily designed to strengthen your cardiovascular system. You should, therefore, take breaks between your workouts for better and effective workout results.
Guest post by Lynn Genah
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About the Author
Lynn Genah is a writer and an editor at The Best Specs.
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