Fitness Refresh

Megan Hanewald

Whether you’re new to Hydrow or have been rowing and moving with us for years, you may be wondering why your rowing machine comes with such a diverse library filled with Pilates, yoga, mobility, circuit and strength training. Although many think that Hydrow is just a rowing company, we’ve worked hard to serve as a whole-health destination focused on your holistic fitness and well-being. That’s why we’re  continually adding content to our library that supports the movement and strength of all of your body’s muscles and joints.  

Let’s start with a major supporting modality that often gets overlooked but packs a serious punch when it comes to your overall health and performance: mobility. Yep, that's right; those seemingly simple stretches and movements that you might brush off are actually key players in keeping your body moving smoothly and efficiently — now and in the long run. Mobility exercises, often overlooked, are basically movements where your body’s joints move functionally through their range of motion. And trust us, when it comes to “time marching on” (aka aging), having a body that moves like a well-oiled machine can make all the difference. 

If you aren't regularly making time for mobility, try thinking of it like this: Your muscles are the engine that drives your movement. They contract and relax to power you through your workouts and daily activities. But here's the kicker: For your muscles to work their magic effectively, they need the freedom to move through their full range of motion. Mobility and yoga exercises, like hip openers, shoulder stretches, and spinal twists, help to keep your joints limber and your muscles supple. They prevent stiffness and tightness, allowing your muscles to move freely and efficiently. When your muscles can move the way they're supposed to, you'll certainly notice improvements in your performance, whether it is in your strength or endurance. The more mobile you are, the greater your efficiency.

Now, let's talk strength. Building strength is like adding horsepower to your engine. It gives you the power and force you need to push through those tough workouts and conquer your fitness goals. But here's the thing: Strength training without proper mobility is like trying to rev up a rusty old engine. Sure, you might get it going, but you're bound to encounter some hiccups along the way due to lack of maintenance. This is where the magic happens when mobility and strength join forces. Increased mobility supports how well your muscles align in your body, allowing them to work more efficiently and effectively. If you regularly work out with pilates, strength training and circuit training, challenging your muscles at their optimal lengths and positions, you'll find that your strength gains skyrocket.

But what does all this have to do with rowing? Rowing is a full-body workout that demands strength, power, and solid technique. Increased mobility and strength help you to get the most out of your rows — and avoid potential injury. With Hydrow’s diverse library that offers beginner through advanced mobility and strength exercises, you'll be well-equipped to tackle those rowing sessions with ease and grace, no matter what your current level of strength, mobility, or rowing technique.

In a nutshell, regularly mixing it up by incorporating mobility, strength and flexibility into your routine can help you refresh your fitness — and help your body move a little more freely in the process. By improving your mobility, you can increase your joints’ range of motion, meaning you recruit muscles in an effective and corrective way, which ultimately leads to the ability to row more efficiently, and will even help you in your everyday tasks and chores. 

So, next time you're tempted to skip some post- or pre-row mobility (and even 5 minutes can make a difference!), remember, these small “interventions” become the mighty weapon that keeps your body running smoothly, gaining strength, and performing at its best.