An indoor rower, or indoor rowing machine, is basically a machine designed to simulate the act of rowing in the indoor environment for the purpose of fitness or training. The word "rower" refers to anyone who uses this machine. This type of machine was initially developed as a way of using the water for exercise but is increasingly used as a strength and conditioning tool as well. The name "rowing" comes from the "row" part of the machine's name. Indoor rowing is now established as a popular sport on its own right.
There are two types of indoor rowers, with each having its pros and cons. First is the fixed model, which features fixed paddles mounted on a spindle that is in constant contact with the water. A flywheel or an electronically controlled motor transfers the force of the paddles to simulate the water's movement. The advantage of this type of machine is that it is easier to use, and does not require the use of footrests.
Next is the hydrostatic model, which uses pistons driven by an electric motor to generate the force required. The advantage of this type of indoor rower is that it can be used with one or two different speed settings. With two different speed settings, you can effectively simulate rowing even when conditions change, like when you are running out of steam. Some rowers also feature some additional features like water bottle holders, built-in fans and CD players. The hydrostatic indoor rowers are more expensive than their fixed counterparts and they generally take longer before they start to feel the effects of wear and tear.
There are also two types of outdoor/interior rowers, namely, the portable and the stand-up. The former features a lightweight frame and can be carried around while the latter is carried on the user's back. Portable indoor rowers are usually manually operated and are mostly used for light rowing applications. Stand-up indoor rowers are freestanding, and they are generally made from either carbon or aluminum and feature pedals that allow the user to stand up while rowing.
All these types of indoor rowers have one thing in common, and that is that they make use of motion sensors for precise resistance and act as sophisticated cardiovascular fitness rowing machines. They also incorporate a unique electronic scoring device that measures both distance covered and time taken for each individual workout session. Most of these devices measure distance using a tiny electronic beam that travels along the rail's surface. Indoor rowers with a sensor, whether a stand-up or piston, can detect and measure heart rate, calories and muscle tension.
Based on the above information, it can be safely concluded that you need to consider buying the best indoor rowers depending on your personal requirements. The first thing to do is check out the price tag. This is where a little bit of research will pay off as you will be able to find a better machine for less. You will also need to look at the manufacturer and the warranty provided with the machine. It is important to buy from a reputed company as reliability is enhanced when machines are manufactured by known brands.