4 Important Phases of the Rowing Machine for Muscle Gain

rowing machine for muscle mass

The rowing machine for muscle gain offers you a fairly complete full-body workout by targeting a lot of muscles. Even though this machine is not among the most popular equipment in the gym. Also, rowing allows you to increase the intensity without increasing the impact. Therefore, it is very useful for injury prevention. Plus, the rowing machine is one of the few machines that provide the benefits of cardio and strength training at the same time. Are you interested?


When using it, about 84% of all your body muscles such as the biceps, triceps, quadriceps, glutes, calves, and hamstrings as well as several other muscles you are working. Are other types of exercise machines that can do this? Apparently no! They are commonly called full-body exercises because they train almost every major muscle group without having to think about it consciously.

This is a low-impact exercise that you can use. They hold weights that don’t make your joints too strong like in other High-Intensity exercises. If you have a knee injury, this is the best machine to keep you active. You can see some reviews about this machine on online forums like Reddit. But, you don’t need to go far because this article will tell you everything about this machine. Let us see below!

Rowing Machine Muscles Benefits.

This machine offers cardiovascular exercises for your entire body that involves several muscle groups. Which in turn will provide an overall increase in muscle strength of your body if you make the movements with the right technique.

If your goal besides building muscle, is to slim down, efficient burning of calories from this machine is one of the benefits. However, the energy you spend can vary based on several factors, such as body composition, weight, and how hard you train.

Seated Rowing Machine Muscles Worked.

There are 4 different phases for training several muscle groups in one exercise.

1. Catch.

This is the beginning of your position and punches where your knees are bent. Your arms are straight while holding the handle, and your body is leaning slightly forward. During the exercise, your triceps muscle will work to stretch your arms and flexors on the fingers by gripping the handle of the machine.

best rowing machine for building muscle
Best rowing machine for building muscle

Muscles involved: Triceps, deltoids, calves, stomach, and lower back.

2. Drive.

This is the encouragement of this exercise. Starting with pushing with the legs. Then swinging the back through a vertical position, and then pulling with the hands toward the chest to form a 90-degree angle. In this phase, leg muscles on the quadriceps will push you away from the machine platform. When your biceps pull the handle of the machine, your shoulder and back muscles will contract to move to the abs. Simultaneously, glutes, quads, and rear will participate in extending the body from the machine.

rowing machine good for muscle building
Rowing machine muscle growth

Muscles worked: Deltoids, upper backs, glutes, calves, forearms, middle backs, calves, hamstrings, lats, quads, and others.

Read more: Best Beginning Bodybuilding Workout Plan with a Complete Guide

3. Finish.

At the end of the drive, pull the paddle arm completely towards the abs or lower chest area then pass a 90-degree angle. Your upper body will be leaned back slightly. Then the legs are stretched with both arms holding the machine grip near the lower chest.

rowing machine for muscle building
Rowing machine for muscle building

Trained muscles: Biceps, forearms, glutes, and quads.

4. Recovery.

It starts with reaching out, leaning from the hips forward, leaning forward, and then bending your knees until returning to the catch position. during the recovery time from the rowing machine for muscle gain, the abs will stabilize your entire body. The core muscles will contract to keep the body upright. When the abs flex the body forward, your triceps push your arms forward. While others like your calves and your thighs will contract to place your feet back on the platform.

recovery after workout
Rowing machine muscles

Muscles engaged: Hamstrings, calves, deltoids, triceps, forearms, and abs.

Is Rowing Good for Building Muscle?

Of course! No rowing machine exercise will not have an impact on you and no muscles that are not used. You can see above so many muscles working in each phase. You will get benefit from this machine for building and toning muscles. Also, burning lots of calories to help improve your definition. So, they provide good exercise, which is for the biceps, triceps, abs, shoulders, quadriceps, and every major muscle in the body. Also, most of your small muscles will start work and growth.

Read more: Best Bodybuilding Exercises at Home Without Equipment for Great Gains


This is one of the best machines for building muscle. It is very good for you to use it in the gym or at home. The rowing machine for muscle gain uses almost all the muscles in the body which simultaneously provides great cardiovascular exercise for you! This is what will make you lose weight by burning more calories and build muscle mass at the same time. Now, get on the rowing machine if you feel challenged to train the whole body that combines cardio exercise with a strength exercise.

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