New buyer looking for advice

Rowing for weight loss or weight control? Start here.
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Json80
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New buyer looking for advice

Post by Json80 » February 14th, 2019, 9:21 pm

Hello....I am looking to get into a shape other than round. I have a decent treadmill and don't know if it's worth it for me to pick up another machine.

1. Is it worth picking up a rower, skierg, or echo bike if i already have a treadmill?
2. Will these machines build muscle or is it mostly cardio all the rowers i knew in college were build like blocks!
3. Which machine would you recommend for purchase during this endeavor I am willing to entertain any of the three and have room for any of them the skierg looked interesting for the upper body blast, but the rower and echo bike look more full body.

Any input would be greatly appreciated since i am about to invest a grand into this and ski erg owners say get ski erg and rower owners say get the rower and there isn't any echo bike forum page saying buy echo bike :D

Thanks in advance!!
J

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hjs
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by hjs » February 15th, 2019, 5:57 am

Up to you...

Rower works the legs, back, but very much how you use. Can build muscle if you do short fast work, if you do long "easy" work, it will build fitness, but no real muscle.

Skierg is different, works the upperbody mostly, does not put much pressure on the spine. Re muscle, same here, sprint stuff yes, long work, not really.

If one is very unfit, any training will make you look better after a while ofcourse. And its personal, I my view rowers never look that muscled, but compared to a runner or cyclist the might. :?:
For my training see twitter @Hjsrowing

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johnlvs2run
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by johnlvs2run » February 15th, 2019, 12:28 pm

Json80 wrote:
February 14th, 2019, 9:21 pm
Which machine would you recommend for purchase during this endeavor
As a lifetime long runner, not able to run for the last three years, I highly recommend the Skierg, and feel it's also the best complement for a runner. Many world class skiers are good runners and vice versa, maybe the best example being Ingrid Kristiansen from Norway, a world class skier who used cross country skiing as part of her training, and broke track and marathon world records in 3 different events several times.

I own a top end treadmill and will probably sell it since I don't use it anymore. I've owned and used C2 rowing machines, didn't like the sitting down type of exercise and felt it wasn't useful to me. I have a regular bicycle connected to a $75 wind trainer, that I find to be more useful than a Bikeerg would probably be, which has it's own issues. Were I to upgrade, I might go to a Stac Zero with power meter that is relatively silent.

I got the Skierg last July, first used it on the stand, and then attached it to the wall. As such, it takes very little room and is easy to use. I can do any workout session on the Skierg that I used to do running, sprints, repetitions, intervals, distance, time trials, get just as good or even better of a workout, and it's convenient to use. Being a long time runner, I use the muscles in my legs and hips, as well as my abs, shoulders and the rest of my body. I haven't noticed a big change in muscles, except for my arms, shoulders, abs, back and gluts getting more firm and strong, but no big muscles or weight gain. I previously had considerable pain in my right leg, knee, hamstrings and glut, which had been bothering me for several years and kept me from running. However, it completely disappeared within the first few weeks of using the Skierg, and hasn't bothered me since.
73 5'8 155
age 70+ world record pace per weight percentages
skierg: 100m 87.4 / 500m 86.2 / 1k 85.9 / 2k 89.4 / 5k 87.6 / 10k 89.4 / 60' 92.0 / 21k 93.6
my training log

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Ombrax
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by Ombrax » February 15th, 2019, 8:25 pm

Jason,

With the caveat that I've never used a ski-erg (but I do want one and if I had a good place to put it, I'd probably have already gotten one) I would suggest a rower for the following reasons:

1) As you've probably already realized, they're one of the very best complete-body exercises you can do.

2) Regarding ski vs row erg, because you're much more likely to find a rower in a gym compared to a ski-erg, if you travel or join a gym the odds are greater that you'll be able to continue rowing.

However, as was mentioned above, the most important thing is that you do something and put time and effort into it.

Good Luck

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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by shadowpup » February 18th, 2019, 1:20 pm

Jason,

I'm a new owner of both the rower and the SkiErg having bought both in November; I also have had a very nice elliptical for five years, and a decent weight room at home. And a membership to my climbing gym for the last four years.

It depends on what you want to accomplish from each machine, and how often you will use them. For me, my primary motivation is to improve my climbing. I'd used climbing, strength training, and my elliptical to improve my sport, balance out my muscles (strength training), and work on my cardiovascular health (energy systems). I wear a Polar HRM to gauge calorie burn for all of these.

Observations:
* My biggest gains have come from climbing - whole body workout, I love the way it gets me outdoors, and works strength/flexibility/cardio. I'm consistently in the gym, 3-4 times a week, with a regular workout program now. I de-load every five weeks or so.

* The elliptical is better for the instant gratification of calorie burn, when I go for intense intervals. However, it hurts my feet to use it more than once a week that way - and my body gets used to the motion after several months, so even more effort is required to maintain that level of burn. Given that, it's making more sense for me to use the elliptical once weekly for a few months, and then swap it out for some other piece of cardio equipment. However, this is the only piece of cardio equipment that I can use where I can guarantee I'll be able to get to 90% HR max without hurting anything (except my feet if I do it more than weekly). A decade and a half ago my poor feet were not an issue.

* The skierg is a fantastic alternative. I can burn calories very nicely on the skierg. It does not hurt my feet. It helps build my core, it's great for my triceps - I've stopped specific tricep exercises. I feel like it helps my back, too. I use the SkiErg interspersed with 500m sets in between strength training sets - say 6x500R5 min, with "rests" meaning time for the weights. I also usually add another 3x500m session to do extra mobility work midweek. I strongly prefer intervals to longer pieces on the SkiErg because it is noisy and gets hard fast :) But I love it as I'm using it now, and can easily get my HR up to 80% max. I cannot do it in good enough form to hit 90%+.

* The rower is a lot of fun. Great full body workout. The Concept 2 is a really nice machine. My biggest issue with the rower is that I really want to improve at it, and I have to hold off on using it too many times a week because recovering from rower interferes with my climbing days, unless I'm not working hard. And that's boring. Also, I cannot use the rower yet for hard interval training yet - that's a form issue on me, and one day that's going to be a solved problem. On the other hand, I can use the rower for longer slower periods (listening to a podcast for an hour) or for harder rows that get me above 80% heart rate, pushing towards 90%, half an hour. I can feel muscle endurance improving, my core, shoulders, lower back all feel better. If I weren't loving climbing I'd probably shoot for rowing. And if I weren't climbing and had to downsize, I'd probably pick the rower as my at-home cardio machine. OTOH I can burn more calories in 30 minutes on the SkiErg so it would be a hard call.

* I've had an exercise bike. I sit too much at work for this to be a good complementary option for me. But some people love it, and I used to enjoy biking for fun outdoors, before taking up climbing.

* Strength training is what builds muscle. Eating right is what takes of the weight. Someone here regularly says - "pick up heavy things" for strength … that's truth. I like weekly heavy "5 rep max" training just now, and regular mobility training interspersed.

The most important thing, though, is to see which machine does what you want in a way you enjoy, and can see yourself repeating several times a week - unless you are like me and invest in having variety at home. I'd suggest using the SkiErg in a gym, if you can arrange for a gym membership even for a month. Not everyone can stick with the SkiErg. You're not going to be able to hear most podcasts over the whoosh of the mechanism, or read a book, or watch a movie - so long slow distance may get tedious. Some people manage it. You can't read a book on the rower either, of course, but you can watch a movie if you don't mind moving closer and further away from the screen.
Stats: F 57 5'7.
RowErg PB: 500m 2:07.3; 1000m 4:44.5; 2000m 9:44.8; 5000m 23:51.6; 6000m 28:35.9; 10000 49:43.4

Json80
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by Json80 » February 19th, 2019, 10:36 pm

I would like to seriously thank you all for taking the time to reply to my questions. You have given me alot to think about with your responses and also made me realize my needs more than I realized my actual needs!

So I sit at a desk all day *with poor posture i am trying to fix* I also have found out that I have spinal stenosis so really need to lose the weight and strengthen my core so as I age I can help rely on my core muscles to support my back.

At first I was set on the skierg but after all the replies. I am thinking that maybe the rower would help to BOTH strengthen my core and also allow me to stretch my chest muscles back in the opposite direction of my perpetual slump position at a computer. I also like (and I could be wrong) that it will help me work more muscles than the ski erg and hopefully help me burn more calories.

Is my overall logic correct?

J

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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by jamesg » February 20th, 2019, 4:02 am

If you learn to row, the C2 offers a good workout. It requires and helps develop style, relaxation, coordination, posture, extension and a certain amount of muscle; and offers very good endurance with no risk of injury. The way the work is distributed can even offer recovery from back problems due desks and cars. Since I re-started rowing at 62, all back problems have disappeared completely.

The endurance is very useful if you also want to swim, scull, kayak, langlauf, climb a few hills or whatever, though some specific muscles may complain on re-starting these after a break, as can be expected.
78y, 188cm, 87kg, last seen MHR 163. 2k (24 May 19) 8.46.6@22

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hjs
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by hjs » February 20th, 2019, 6:13 am

Rower works more muscle yes, but a few not so, mostly the arm pushing ones and the shoulders.

It will not correct posture I am afraid, we are still sitting and stretching the backside, to correct that, exercises like facepulls and bandaparts are usefull. Don,t take much time.
For my training see twitter @Hjsrowing

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johnlvs2run
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by johnlvs2run » February 20th, 2019, 1:01 pm

Json80 wrote:
February 19th, 2019, 10:36 pm
So I sit at a desk all day *with poor posture i am trying to fix* I also have found out that I have spinal stenosis so really need to lose the weight and strengthen my core so as I age I can help rely on my core muscles to support my back.
A friend has had frozen shoulder on one side, rotator cuff issues on the other and has always sat and stood with a huge hunch at the top of her back for as long as I've known her. She was not able to reach her hands above chest level, not able to stand without a noticeable hunch, and had pain when trying to lay on her side. Due to some exercises that I gave her, and also trying my Skierg for a couple of a minutes a half dozen times, she is now able to reach nearly straight overhead, and has much better posture. Any hunch is no longer noticeable.

Here are some excepts of the women's record holder doing her 7:02.7 2k.
You can speed up, slow down, or make them full screen: front view/side view/full interview.
She uses a fuller form than most I have seen, but these should give you an idea of the muscles used and the posture.
73 5'8 155
age 70+ world record pace per weight percentages
skierg: 100m 87.4 / 500m 86.2 / 1k 85.9 / 2k 89.4 / 5k 87.6 / 10k 89.4 / 60' 92.0 / 21k 93.6
my training log

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Carl Watts
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by Carl Watts » February 20th, 2019, 7:26 pm

The only problem with the Concept 2 rower is you typically love it or you hate it.

Pretty much everyone can get on a treadmill and walk or run, its a natural movement where as rowing is a different beast. I have seen one listed for sale as a "Torture Device".

If you have used one previously and like it, which means if you buy one you will actually use it then its a better overall body workout than a treadmill alone.
Carl Watts.
Age:52 Weight: 104kg Height:183cm
Concept 2 Monitor Service Technician & indoor rower.
http://log.concept2.com/profile/863525/log

Pluto man
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by Pluto man » February 24th, 2019, 2:52 pm

As a new convert to exercise and losing weight whilst improving my core and energy levels I have to say the concept 2 rower is the best piece of equipment I have ever bought.

A bold statement but for me the rowing action seems natural and easy to get along with. After nearly a month I have rowed 170k and exercised a total of 14 hours and 30 minutes.

I also have a sedentary job and inlvoled sitting at a desk, so my posture needed improving including my core strength. I feel a lot stronger, more toned and obviously have lost weight as well.

So another vote for the rower Jason, but whatever you purchase if you use it as intended you will get fitter and improve strength etc.

Hope that helps,

Neil.
52 yo, 105Kgs, 182cm, started the journey 25/01/2019.

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Anth_F
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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by Anth_F » February 25th, 2019, 9:18 am

I agree with a lot that has been said by the others in here. The rower changed my life, fact!!! I was someone who had previously done zero exercise for many years, up until a few years ago when i purchased a C2 Rowing machine. Since then i have not looked back. The rower gave me great energy, and motivation, to even lead on to start doing weight training and other activities. It can be quite addictive too!! I try to manage my training schedule to allow for a sufficient amount of recovery days... but the temptation to jump on the rower each day is very strong :lol:
42yo male 5'10 78kg (Rowing since june 9th 2016) PB's 5k 19:22 30min 7518m

My goals are simply to keep fit/get fitter and continue to enjoy rowing on the C2 :)

https://log.concept2.com/log

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Re: New buyer looking for advice

Post by Paul N » February 25th, 2019, 11:24 am

I would say whatever you do, also get a set of therabands and do exercises like these:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Llft_JbD5ys

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txC-6TCklMQ
Row: 500m 2:04.7 | 1k 4:19.4 | 2k 8:55.4 | 5k 23:13.7 | 6k 28:43.9 | 10k 49:31.8 | 1min 257m | 4min 908m | 30min 6,328m
Ski: 500m 2:18.8 | 1k 4:58.8 | 2k 10:01.6 | 5k 25:59.7 | 10k 52:44.7

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