Basic Rowing Technique

How to Row a Rowing Machine – The Rowing Stroke

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The Catch – How to Row Technique – Concept 2 Rowers.

The Catch

  • Arms are straight and relaxed. Head is neutral. Shoulders are level and not hunched. The position should feel comfortable.
  • Upper body is leaning forward from the hips with the shoulders
    in front of the hips.
  • Shins are vertical, or as close to vertical as is comfortable for you. Shins should not move beyond perpendicular.
  • Heels may lift as needed.
The Drive – How to Row Technique – Concept 2 Rowers.

The Drive

  • Start the drive by pressing with your legs, and then swing the back through the vertical position before finally adding the arm pull.
  • Hands with a loose grip on the handle move in a straight line to and from the flywheel.
  • Shoulders remain low and relaxed.
The Finish – How to Row Technique – Concept 2 Rowers.

The Finish

  • Upper body is leaning back slightly, using good support from
    the core muscles.
  • Legs are extended and handle is held lightly below your ribs. The arms draw the handle past the knees to the body.
  • Shoulders should be low with wrists and grip relaxed. Wrists should be flat.
The Recovery – How to Row Technique – Concept 2 Rowers.

The Recovery

  • Extend your arms until they straighten before leaning from the hips towards the flywheel.
  • Once your hands have cleared your knees, allow your knees to bend and gradually slide the seat forward on the monorail.
  • For your next stroke, return to the catch position with shoulders relaxed and shins vertical.


1. Getting Started Rowing

(The rowing technique is the same for all models. The higher Model E indoor rower is shown.)

2. Correct Rowing Technique

3. Common Rowing Technique Errors

4. Rowing with Greater Intensity

When you want to row with higher intensity you can read out your efforts on the display of the precise PM5 performance monitor. Learn how to use the PM5 monitor.

With a compatible heart rate belt you can row in different heart rate zones depending on your training goals.