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Which rowing machine or treadmill is best?

When it’s time for cardio, you could lace up and hit the track or settle in for a few thousand meters of rowing. Each is different and good for your body in its own way, but there are some discrepancies you should consider to get the most out of your workout.

When considering cardio, the most important aspects are whether or not the training is high or low impact, how many calories you burn, the muscle groups you activate, how long it usually takes and how easy it is.

Rowing offers a full-body workout that’s low impact but highly effective, and the Concept 2 Model D Rowing Machine is the top choice.

Treadmills for home

A treadmill primarily activates your quadriceps and hamstrings, as well as your calves and glutes. It works out all of your legs and parts of your core and back, and how your feet hit the ground and jolt your legs makes it a high-impact exercise. 

While high-impact exercises help train your body, they can also hurt you if you’re not careful and properly maintaining your form and drinking water. The advantages of a treadmill mean you’ll be able to run whenever without much fear of injury or environmental factors. Plus, you’ll be able to take all extraneous factors out of the workout and focus on the run. If your goal is weight loss or being more fit, running two to four times per week for 20 to 30 minutes is enough. 

OMA Treadmill pros

OMA Treadmill

Adjust your speed and incline and keep track of run details on the treadmill for home. The OMA Treadmill for home is easy to assemble and takes some of the stress out of running. When you run on it, there’s a good rebound, which takes out some of the impact and makes it easier on your joints. Plus, there’s a monitor on the treadmill, making it easier to keep track of and visualize the distance you’ve run, your speed, and the calories you’ve burned.

OMA Treadmill cons

The Bluetooth speaker in the treadmill doesn’t have great sound quality, and it can be challenging to connect. Besides the fact that it comes with a dongle for attaching your iPad to the treadmill, the treadmill’s screen is very basic, but the interface appears cluttered.

Indoor rowing machine

Rowing is the full-package workout. More than just simple cardio, rowing activates nearly all of your body at once, from your calves, quads, hamstrings and glutes to your obliques, pecs, biceps, triceps, deltoids, upper back and latissimus dorsi. 

The rowing motion is fluid and doesn’t cause abrupt stopping and starting that might hurt your joints. This low-impact exercise doesn’t go easy on you. However, the fact that you’re constantly working multiple muscle groups burns a lot of energy quickly so that you can shed weight and cut down fast. If you want to lose weight and get fit, consistency is key. The beauty of the rowing machine is that it’s easy on your joints, so you can do it more often. Rowing for 30 minutes four to six times weekly will yield sterling results. 

Concept 2 Model D rowing machine pros

Concept 2 Model D rowing machine

The Concept 2 Model D indoor rowing machine is the best rower you can get for the price. It has damper levels to increase the intensity of your workout. It uses an air-resistance flywheel which means you pull against air with every stroke. 

Despite that it makes very little noise, and the computer interface is sparse but straightforward. It will tell you how often you go 500 meters and how long it takes you to do it. This rowing machine fits nearly all users with ergonomically designed handles, adjustable footrests and a 14-inch seat height.

Concept 2 Model D rowing machine cons

Concept 2 Model D rowing machines are more complex than treadmills. It will take some practice before you get a feel for proper form and begin to row faster with more intense dampers. Pretty much everyone can get up and run without having to be taught — not so with rowing. 

You must have the proper rhythm and form to get the most out of the machine. With more resistance, rowing can become an intensely draining activity, so start slow and work your way up slowly. 

Should you get the treadmill or the rowing machine?

A treadmill is a classic piece of workout machinery that’s good for any home gym, but the rowing machine is by far the more effective workout. It also takes up less space. The cardio you get from a rowing machine also has less chance of injuring you while working your entire body instead of just your legs. 

By working out holistically, you’re increasing your gains because compound exercises that target multiple muscle groups make them work together and grow more, whereas isolation exercises that isolate one muscle group work less in the same amount of time.

The body types you acquire from running or rowing are different, so take that into account. If you row more often than you run, you will have a stronger body than a marathon runner because you push with your legs and pull with your arms. If you run more often, then you’re going to be leaner and burn more fat than the rowers. However, you’ll have less muscle mass because running is more cardio.

Besides, unlike most exercises, rowing has both aerobic and anaerobic benefits. This means it will help increase the efficiency with which oxygen gets to your muscles and increase their ability to deal with resistance. Besides, you can run anywhere without the need for machinery, but to row, you’d need a boat and a body of water which aren’t always available.

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Sam Bramlett writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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