Rowing Machines: Why they're surging in popularity

Leanne Yenush

Indoor rowing is everywhere, and interest in rowing machines has surged in recent years. Why is this? And what should you know if you’re considering investing in a rowing machine like Hydrow for your own home? Here’s everything you need to be set up for success.

Rowing machines and interval training

Rowing on the water has been a sport for centuries, and indoor rowing machines have been around for almost 150 years. However, they were mainly used to keep rowing athletes in shape during the off-season… until now.

Indoor rowing has become increasingly mainstream in the last several years. In our fast-paced world, millions of people are looking for a way to get more workout in less time so they can move on to other commitments in their day. Interval training – and especially high-intensity interval training, also known as HIIT – has become increasingly popular as a way to stay in shape.

Some forms of HIIT training, such as bootcamps and running drills, are also high impact activities. Over time, high impact activities can strain your joints and lead to discomfort or even injury.

So how do you get your endorphin fix in a way that allows you to take on your favourite high intensity workouts for decades to come? The answer is to take up forms of fitness that are low impact; here are a few reasons why.

Low impact exercise has shorter down time

If your favourite way to sweat is a high impact activity, your body needs ample downtime to recover, particularly your joints. You won’t have this issue with low impact exercise, and don’t have to worry about micromanaging your on days and off days. 

Low impact exercise has lesser chance of injury 

Activities that are high impact can increase the risk of injury or pain during and after your workout. With low impact exercise, it doesn’t matter how balanced or clumsy you are; you’ll always be in a position to support yourself, reducing the chances of injury. One definition of low impact exercise is any activity in which at least one foot is in contact with the ground or a machine at all times; with rowing, it’s both feet! 

Low impact exercise is suitable for all levels

Have no idea what you’re doing? Rowing is a great fit. Elite athlete looking to break records? Rowing is a great fit. Low impact exercise is accessible at all different skill levels, so whether you’re in the best shape of your life or are getting back into the swing of things, rowing is an activity that meets you where you are and scales with you as you develop strength and endurance.

It’s easier than ever to learn how to row 

Another reason at-home rowing has taken off is because it’s easier than ever to learn how to row efficiently and effectively. Rowing is suitable for all levels, but it does take a little bit of instruction to ensure you’re getting the most out of each workout.

That’s why at Hydrow we have our Learn To Row series. In this set of quick videos you can watch directly from your rower, you’ll have everything you need to take the right steps in the right order on your rowing journey. 

Moreover, one of the biggest advantages of rowing on Hydrow is that you’ll receive form tips and cues during your workout on a regular basis. Whether it’s a warmup, a cooldown, or an actual workout, the best way to make subtle changes in your movements and master a skill is to do them while you are actually doing the movement in question.

Hydrow: The ultimate rowing machine

Hydrow is one of the best ways to get this real-time instruction in a fun, informative, and effective way. Learn to row with a library of over 2,000 workouts available to you on-demand at any time. In addition to hundreds of hours of instruction to choose from, here are a few of Hydrow’s other big benefits:

Live Rows

Hydrow uses Live Outdoor Reality™ technology to bring the thrilling outdoor ambience of outdoor rowing directly into your home in real time. Live Rows are brought to you each and every week; hop on and join your crew for a live experience where anything goes. New live schedules are posted each week on Hydrow’s website, and calendar integrations are available so you never miss a Live Row.

Structure for reaching your goals

To help give you some structure and see progress over time, Hydrow has several features to keep you accountable and focused.

To determine what pace you should aim to row at in your workouts. Hydrow’s 5-minute assessment row is a time trial from which you’ll determine your pace windows for what we call walking pace, jog pace, run pace, sprint pace, and max pace. Hydrow also has training camps to help you get stronger and add some variety to your routine

A dynamic community 

Join the party! Hydrow members are in a private Facebook group together to chat rowing, wellness, and… well, whatever comes to mind! Ask questions, connect with other Hydrow users, and stay in the know on important updates.

If a little friendly competition motivates you, the leaderboard feature on any workout can keep you inspired. And if you want to focus completely on you, one tap of the leaderboard will hide it behind a tab for you.


As at-home fitness continues to evolve, rowing will be here to stay as an all-in-one solution. Whether you’ve been rowing for years, or just want to get back into the swing of trying something new, we’ve got you covered. Learn more about Hydrow and everything we have to offer by clicking here.

Get Hydrow today with a 30-day risk-free trial + free shipping (£150 Value).