If you are in the market for a new cardio machine for your home gym, there are plenty of choices. The truth is, cardio machines are designed in so many shapes and sizes, that finding one for your needs is never a problem.
However, what concerns many is the effectiveness of each cardio machine. When reviewing the equipment in general, many experience the dilemma between choosing a treadmill vs. rowing machine.
Now, we all know that there are tons of other machines such as exercise bikes, rowers, cross trainers and treadmills that would get the job done when it comes to burning calories. However, treadmills and rowing machines are kind of similar and great in diversifying your workouts while helping you burn calories.
So, deciding between these two is obviously a challenge. Today, we are talking more about their advantages and disadvantages, as well as additional things you need to consider. The idea is to help you choose the right fit for your needs and reach your fitness goals.
A treadmill is one of the most popular pieces of cardio equipment. It simulates running, but can also be very effective for speed walking, light jogging, hiking (with an incline) or just walking at a standard pace. There are many advantages to it, and it can be used for a range of goals.
Since almost everyone can walk, jog or run, treadmills are pretty much universal. The same goes for the range of activities and the benefits they promote – you can lose weight, improve your cardio levels, strengthen your leg muscles and burn calories. Below, we are listing each of the unique benefits of buying a treadmill vs. rowing machine.
A Great Cardio Workout
First of all, there is no denying the fact that running, jogging or hiking are all great for burning calories and increasing your heart rate levels. Even if you use the treadmill for light walks, the chances are that you are going to boost your heart rate levels and, as a result, burn calories. A habit like this will also help you prevent pain in your back, neck and entire body in the long run.
Focused On Toning Your Leg Muscles
Running on a treadmill is an activity that centers the resistance in your leg area. With explosive muscle contractions, you are moving forward with speed. This is something that increases your health and performance. From your quads to your hamstrings, glutes and calves, running stimulates a great muscle workout, mostly based on how fast and for how long you run.
Variable Incline Levels
Having a cardio machine that you can use for at least three different activities (such as walking, jogging, running and hiking) is a privilege not many have. The most advanced treadmills come with incline features, meaning that you can also focus on power and burn some serious calories. The incline levels in your treadmill can also help you make most of your HIIT workouts, and keep your training varied.
Now that you know some of the ins and outs of treadmills, it is time to see what rowing machines are and what sets of benefits and drawbacks they actually have. Rowing machines are praised because aside from cardio, they are also working out the entire body simultaneously.
Even though the concept of a rowing machine is newer than the one of a treadmill, these cardio machines took the world by storm with their effective workouts. For many, a rowing machine is the best way to elevate metabolism, improve stamina and boost their resistance levels.
As we hinted in the section above, probably one of the biggest advantages of rowing machines is the fact that they provide a full-body workout. From the back to the biceps and legs, a machine like this makes the exercise complete, which is why it is ideal for both muscle building and calorie burning at the same time.
On another note, a rowing machine can be used as part of your cardio training or as a way to boost your back workout. Either way, you will get full-body traction and tone your upper and lower body.
Some people want to take things up a notch when they exercise, and rowing machines are great for that. Thanks to the variable resistance, you can adjust the machine and go from light rowing to a heavy workout. As a result, your muscles will be more activated, starting from your biceps to your back, as well as your lats and rear delts.
HIIT workouts are another side benefit of the resistance adjustments. With long distance rows, you can mix cardio and muscle building and even prevent back pain (which is a common issue for many).
Cost Of Treadmill Vs. Rowing Machine
When it comes to costs, it is good to mention that there are various types of treadmill vs. rowing machines on the market. From brands to a number of features and adjustments, the cost goes up in both types of equipment.
Treadmills are generally more expensive compared to rowing machines. For instance, a solid treadmill with an incline base and good features can cost you anywhere from $2,000 to $3,000. If you want to focus on your running and improve your stamina, a machine like this will provide a unique running experience and make your workout smooth – not to mention that it will last longer than the entry-level treadmill models.
Rowing machines are cheaper than treadmills for the most part. There are some machines that are priced as low as $600 and offer a lot of features. One of the good things about rowing machines is that you can choose them based on their resistance types and see how much you could be spending. There are air, magnetic, water and hydraulic pistons, and water tends to have the highest price. A high-end rowing machine costs more than $1,000.
Verdict: Which Machine Is Better?
While some will say that treadmills are better because they provide a workout that we can all do without a lot of strength required, others prefer rowing machines because of the full-body training that they provide.
Still, even this is not enough to say which machine has a better value and provides more benefits. To do that, you need to identify your goals and see which is the right fit. For example:
So, if you want a slim and streamlined physique without using a lot of strength in your upper body, we advise buying a treadmill. But if you want a wider back and need to tone your upper body muscles, a rowing machine will certainly be a better choice for your needs.
Summing Up The Pros And Cons Of Treadmills Vs. Rowing Machines
If you still can’t decide on which machine to choose for your needs, perhaps these lists of pros and cons can help you.
Rowing Machine Pros
Rowing Machine Cons
In the end, no calorie-burning exercise is easy. Whichever machine you prefer, you should know that adapting to it and making your workouts effective is going to take some time. When starting out, it is good to be motivated and start slow. Progressing on to greater resistance levels, more time spent on the machine and a better routine can take some time.