posted: November 21, 2023

updated: November 21, 2023

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is hydrow good for beginners article featured image
a beginner rowing on the hydrow and rating

This rating is based on how good the hydrow is for beginners out of 10 stars.

Fit Healthy Momma Rating: 9/10 ⭐

Hydrow is a game-changing smart rower that’s bringing the thrill of the water to living rooms all across the world. For those new to the sport of rowing, their confidence will soar as soon as they experience the comfort and ease of use of the machine and begin rowing with their dedicated programs for beginners.

In today’s society, 77% of American adults don’t get enough physical activity each day. Even more alarming is that that number continues to climb as our lives get busier and we get lazier thanks to technology.

But what if technology could also be the key to unlocking a better workout experience? A workout experience that includes ease of use, functionality, and convenience. We’re lucky to be living during a time when connected home fitness is blossoming, making exercising more accessible than ever before.

Standout brands like Hydrow and their innovative smart rowing machine have burst onto the scene and shown folks that you can indeed get a great workout in from home and that it can actually be quite fun and, of course, effective too. Using the Hydrow Rower for rowing uses up to 85% of your body’s muscles at once, afterall. This stat tends to pique the interest of plenty.

But the problem that I see consistently is that folks are hesitant to buy a smart rower like the Hydrow because they’re beginners to rowing. They want to know before making a purchasing decision the answer to this question, “Is Hydrow good for beginners?”

So, in this article I want to tackle that question head on so that whether you’re brand new to rowing or you’ve dabbled in it before, you can feel confident that you are purchasing  equipment that meets your needs no matter what your current fitness level.

What Makes Hydrow Good For Beginners?

a beginner uses the hydrow smart rower

If you found your way here, then the Hydrow has already caught your eye but, as a beginner, you’re curious if it’s a good fit for you. In an effort to help put your mind at ease and make the decision to buy a Hydrow feel a little less intimidating, I’m going to review a handful of features on the Hydrow that cater specifically to those who are brand new to rowing.

Sleek, Easy to Use Design

hydrow's sleek and beautiful design

For beginners, it's great knowing that you can have a complete home gym that isnt' bulky or takes up too much space - hydrow provides that solution. This image shows the rower folding and standing up, so you can store it pretty much anywhere.

So while the aesthetics of the machine (although impressive!) may not contribute directly to your experience as a beginner, there are some key design elements that make it beginner-friendly. For starters, there is nothing complicated about the design of the Hydrow. There’s literally no learning curve for figuring out how to get started. The movement of rowing itself is incredibly simple, so it only makes sense to design a machine that mimics that simplicity without the need to add on anything extra to complicate things.

Patented Drag Technology Gives You The Feel of The River

a beginner can feel like rowing on the water with hydrow

Hydrow reimagined the rowing machine to make it feel as though you’re really out on the water. In contrast to popular indoor rowing machines like the Concept 2, Hydrow produces a smoother, more realistic feeling when rowing that feels more accessible to beginners.

Giant, 22” Touchscreen for Optimal Viewing

a beginner uses hydrow's really big HD touchscreen

When you’re new to something, the last thing you want to do is be squinting and straining to see how to do it. What good is an instructor if you can’t clearly see their movements? Hydrow’s HD touchscreen is large enough to give you a front row seat to all the rowing action and to dial in your attention so that you can pick up on all the correct techniques.

Ergonomically Designed Seat for Ultimate Comfort

a beginner rower sits on hydrow comfy seat

For those new to rowing, just the action of sitting on a rower’s seat can feel intimidating if you’ve never done it before. And we all know that when we’re new to something, we’ll take any excuse we can to get out of it. Unfortunately (or, fortunately), you aren’t going to be able to use the excuse that your behind is uncomfortable when rowing with the Hydrow. They include a 10-roller system seat that’s ergonomic and perfectly cushioned to keep your tush comfortable throughout the whole workout.

Low Impact Exercise

beginner does low impact workout on hydrow rower

For those who are new to working out in general, it’s important to start with movements that aren’t going to shock your system or set you up for injury. Rowing is a low-impact workout that provides a powerful punch of cardio and strength training mixed together. Low-impact workouts are easy on your joints and great for your body.

Beginner, Step-by-Step Rowing Programs and Content

a beginner workout with the hydrow

Beginners, have no fear, Hydrow has you covered with their library of introductory workout videos that focus on concepts like the following:

  • Fundamentals of how to row
  • How to use Hydrow correctly and understand your stats
  • Rowing with correct form and proper muscle engagement
  • Using good technique to maximize your power output and speed
  • How to take care of your Hydrow

Not only that, but there are workouts that are geared towards those who are new to rowing or who haven’t rowed in years and need to ease their way back in. 

Expert Rowers Guiding You

expert coaches coaching beginner hydrow workout

Hydrow athletes and coaches are real rowing progressions and enthusiasts who are passionate about what they do. They understand form and technique and guide you through the entire workout. If you like feeling like you’re a part of a community and you’re not alone when working out, then Hydrow’s programming is perfect for you.

Community Support

beginner-friendly support from hydrow

Hydrow believes in working together in an inclusive environment. When you join the community, you’re part of the team and they don’t leave anyone behind. The Hydrow community is kind, encouraging, and filled with folks just like you who are new to rowing and looking for a place to belong.

The Awesome Benefits of Indoor Rowing

There's a ton of smart rowers to choose from, like hydrow, ergatta and concept2. And, you’ve likely heard the recent buzz around indoor rowing machines and how they provide a cardio and strength hybrid workout that’s far superior to running or cycling. So let’s take a second to highlight some of the amazing benefits of indoor rowing to solidify the rumors.

beginner benefits of indoor rowing

It’s a Full-Body Workout Experience

Rowing is the only cardio-based workout that allows you to target up to 85% of your body’s muscles at once. When rowing with proper form, you’ll be working your upper body, lower body, and core all at the same time. Talk about getting the most bang for your buck!

High-Intensity But Low-Impact

As a beginner to exercising, you don’t want to come right out of the gate and dive into something so intense and demanding that you put yourself at risk for injury or burnout. Rowing is unique in that it’s incredibly low-impact, meaning it bears little impact on your joints, and the intensity of the workout is variable. So, for a brand new rower, you can safely and confidently begin from right where you are and progress your way to higher intensity rows without ever sacrificing the integrity of your joints.

Improved Posture

Take a look around and you’ll see that the vast majority of us could use a little help in the posture department. Because we spend so much time hunched over in front of our computers and devices, our posture has slipped and we’re seeing more back and neck pain than ever before. Rowing actually encourages you to improve your posture. In order to row properly, you must pay attention to specific form cues that keep you upright and engaged.

It’s Versatile

Rowing isn’t the boring workout that it used to be. Thanks to smart rowers, you can literally make your row anything you want. You can take it easy and enjoy a scenic row on the water or you can ramp things up and go for high-intensity intervals. The options are endless!

Short, Effective Workouts

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I just need to get into my home gym and get my workout done as quickly and efficiently as possible. This is where rowing shines. Instead of needing to slog along on the treadmill or grind it out on your stationary bike for 30-60 minutes to fulfill your workout goals, you can accomplish a whole body workout in half the time with a rowing machine.

It’s Fun!

If you’re a beginner to rowing, you may not realize that it’s actually really fun! It’s a unique challenge that works so many different muscles at once, and thanks to the awesome programming available on smart rowing machines like Hydrow vs CITYROW GO Max, you’ll enjoy the whole process. For many, rowing is the most exciting cardio workout out there.

Why Do People Feel Intimidated to Try Rowing?

Speaking from personal experience, starting out with rowing can be intimidating. Prior to the start of this year, I had never rowed before in my life. In fact, I had never even considered it. I, like many of you, had always thought of rowing as an elite sport reserved for serious athletes and those who were massively in shape, particularly in their upper body.

dad and daughter looking at hydrow indoor rower

The Truth ✅

However, I quickly realized that you don’t need to have a jacked upper body to row nor do you need to be on the crew team to enjoy the sport. Anyone can row! Of course, there will be a learning curve that you’ll need to progress through when you’re just starting out on your rowing journey, but people of all shapes, sizes, and athletic abilities are capable of rowing.

Just like with anything in life that you’re new to, getting confident starts with taking the first step. And the first step is getting on the rower and learning the basics of form. The rest will naturally unfold from there!

Final Thoughts: Should a Beginner Buy Hydrow?

100% yes, the hydrow is great for beginners! I am now convinced that rowing is a workout that can be tailored to anyone, no matter what their current experience or fitness level is. While jumping on a rowing machine at the gym used (and might still) feel intimidating, smart fitness brands like Hydrow vs Aviron are allowing you to bring an interactive rowing experience right to your living room, making rowing more accessible than ever.

Plus, Hydrow is perfect for beginners because it contains features and programs that are custom tailored to those who are brand new to the sport. Everyone from beginners to advanced rowers will find a ton of value in the Hydrow experience. Yes, the Hydrow will be an investment, but when you consider the immense benefits of rowing and you calculate the money you’ll save on your gym membership and other equipment, investing in a Hydrow rowing machine is well worth it.

About the Author

Lynn Rose is a super talented mom and Certified Nutritionist with a big passion for sharing knowledge. She spent about 10 years working in journalism, where she learned a lot about writing and telling stories. Lynn also worked in radio for about 3 years, doing all sorts of cool jobs like being on the air, directing programs, helping with promotions, and even designing websites. She has a B.A. in Communications. When she's not writing, Lynn loves to try different products and provide in-depth hands-on reviews.

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