What Kind of Equipment Do You Need for Indoor Rowing?

It is obvious that the indoor rowing machine is important for every athlete, CrossFit or those who prefer to exercise indoors.

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What Kind of Equipment Do You Need for Indoor Rowing

It is obvious that the indoor rowing machine is important for every athlete, CrossFit or those who prefer to exercise indoors. The shape you want to achieve that made you embark on a workout in a gym in the first place can be gained faster through rowing. The rowing machine, otherwise known as a rower, is a must-have in your gym or at home for a great indoor rowing workout. There are many different models and prices, so you can find one within your budget.

Using a rower at home is a big step toward achieving your target shape. The offer low-impact exercise so you can build muscles, increase the number of calories burned, lose weight, and improve fitness, yet you won’t place any additional stress on your joints, such as your knees. Furthermore,because the rowing machine is a low-impact workout, it can be used by people of all ages from professional rowers to elderly grandparents—and anyone can achieve their personal fitness goals. It is a worthy investment to buy a rower or to engage in a rowing workout.

In order to make your rowing experience comfortable and more beneficial, there is a little extra equipment you need. The rowing ergometer, the padded seat, the sliding seat, foot pedals, fans blades…the list is almost endless. Some are superb accessories that will help you improve your performance while others could just mean you have wasted your money. So, what is the most important equipment for indoor rowing or similar cardio workout? Read on.

Rowing Equipment Needed

Some of the best equipment for the indoor rower (and almost all other cardio equipment and exercise equipment), which are often overlooked, but are essential in maximizing performance include:

Seat Pad

Rowing Machine Seat Pad” src=”https://indoorcardiopro.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Rowing-Machine-Seat-Pad.jpg” alt=”Rowing Machine” width=”1000″ height=”598″ data-id=”666″>

A seat pad can make a lot of difference in terms of comfort and convenience for indoors rower users. They Are Also commonly used by crew rowers. The seat pad is used during rowing for different uses such as adding height. It is also used for comfort and additional grip. When you compare the price to the rowing machine, it is a must-buy if you want to get through months or even years of long rowing sessions.

Rowing Machine Mat

Rowing Machine Mat

Another piece of equipment needed for rowing is a rowing machine mat. A rowing machine mat is used for two major reasons:

  • It prevents slipping off the machine
  • It protects the floor from sweat and marks

The need for a rowing machine mat is solely dependent on the environment that you set your rower up. A row machine mat should be used if you assume that the rower will move while rowing. As earlier stated, you can use a row machine mat to avoid sweat, chain oil, scratches or marks caused by a rowing machine. Get a rowing machine mat that has a thickness of 1/4 inch. Furthermore, go for a rower mat that is durable so it will stand up to vigorous workouts. Although the mat might give off a rubbery odor in the beginning, it will soon disappear. A rowing machine mat is not difficult to clean. Just use a damp cloth and a little water.


A mirror is usually bought by an experienced or advanced row machine user or somebody who is focused on attaining the perfect rowing technique. Rowing is done while facing a mirror. With a mirror facing you as you row, you will see your certain key points and stroke. For instance, when the rowing machine handle is drawn to on your chest or whether your head is always on a motion from one side to another. Another benefit of a standing mirror is that you will look at the back angle, move toward the side and analyze your strokes. You will soon be able to perfect your rowing technique by using a mirror.



Another piece of equipment that many rowers use are sweatbands. Sweatbands make a lot of difference to your grip and it makes rowing more enjoyable. Sweatbands are worn on the wrists as most people get sweaty arms during rowing. It is used to prevent the sweat from dripping onto your hands as it will severely affect your grip. You should also wear a sweatband on your head. When you mop your forehead with your bare hands it will transfer the sweat to the handle of the rower, which defeats the object. Therefore, it is of paramount importance to use a sweatband to wipe the sweat off your forehead. They Are not expensive, so they are a must-buy they will make a big difference to your rowing experience.


Usually, gloves are not required to prevent blisters on your hands while on a rowing machine. Gloves may not be needed before using a rowing machine. However, if you encounter blisters, gloves are an effective solution. Gloves designed for rowing are breathable and light to use. With a pair of gloves, you can achieve a solid and comfortable grip on the rower machine handle. Having the best possible grip of a rower machine handle. The rate of rowing training in a gym, at a club or at any other place where rowing is done can build up calluses quickly and the pain experienced in the hand while rowing can be excruciating. Some use plasters or apply creams to ease the pain. This is different from an indoor user as blisters might affect their day job. In such a scenario, using lightweight gloves is a worthy investment and you won’t experience such issues. You can use gloves for any gym equipment that has the same function. Palm pads are a good alternative, too, and they will eliminate the sweat that comes with gloves.

Wireless Headphones (Bluetooth)

Wireless Headphones (Blueto

Sometimes, we may not feel that motivated to row. Therefore, why not add a handy set of Bluetooth wireless headphones to your armory. This way, you can listen to motivational music while doing your rowing workout. Using headphones will prevent any disturbance in your surroundings. Instead of using speakers, which can be noisy, make use of headphone that is connected to a smartphone or any other compatible electronic device and play your favorite music. As you will work up a real sweat during your workout, you need to buy headphones that are waterproof and can withstand the sweatiest of ears!

Rowing Machine Chain Oil

Rowing Machine Chain Oil

Rowing machine oil is needed to lubricate the rowing machine chain. When you purchase a new Concept 2 Model D rower, a lubricating bottle for the chain is not included in the kit. Therefore, to keep the rowing machine working optimally, you need to buy a bottle of chain oil to ensure maximum lubrication.

A Water Bottle

Having a bottle of water is Vital. While on a rower for a long period of time or doing high-intensity training, there is a need to compensate the liquid lost when you are sweating profusely. Purchase a high-quality water bottle that can easily be cleaned, is easy to fill and isn’t easy to break—you could well drop it.


While rowing, wear synthetic clothes that are lightweight and fast-drying. Clothes with fast-drying technology are better than using traditional clothes made of cotton. During rowing, you tend to sweat a lot so wearing fast-dry clothing will ensure comfort. Wearing shorts and short-sleeved sports shirts are ideal, as they ensure better air circulation. Running tights are also good. However, make sure that the clothes you wear are loose-fitting (though not too lose) to allow the freedom of movement while rowing.

PM5 Performance Monitor

PM5 Performance Monitor

The PM5 performance monitor is another essential piece of equipment for your rowing workout. On the reverse of this electronic device, you will see a USB port where you can attach your USB flash drive. The PM5 performance monitor records your rowing workout data such as your heart rate. It can also record the data on the USB if it is attached so you can look at in on your computer afterward. This workout equipment if of sturdy construction and incredibly reliable. Do not attach PM5 performance monitor with your keys hanging on it.

Polar H7 Bluetooth Smart Heart Rate Sensor

Polar H7 Bluetooth Smart Heart Rate Sensor

This electronic device is very popular and among users of the rowing machine. It is compatible to use with the PM5 performance monitor. You can pair a chest belt with this electronic device and PM5 performance monitor and have your heart rate displayed on the monitor. A compatible chest belt, together with a heart rate monitor,requires Bluetooth Smart or ANT+. There is a difference between this and Bluetooth.

Final Thoughts

There is a lot of great equipment available on the market that you can use alongside your rower to get maximize results. As mentioned in this article, the equipment can be of help to you. Though none of it is essential to buy, if you want the very best rowing experience, this equipment can make all the difference.

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