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TOPIC: Rowing machine to tone upper arms?

 
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July 24, 2012 2:11 AM
I've been running for a week now but have noticed that my upper arms could do with a bit of work. I have quite decent biceps but also have a slight case of "bingo wings". I want to do some exercise to tone up my arms. There is a rowing machine at my gym. Can I use that to achieve this (how long a session?), or am I looking at buying dumbbells?
July 24, 2012 2:12 AM
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  23430562
July 24, 2012 4:23 AM
Rowing is primarily cardio. There will be a small increase in upper body strength and "tone" as you adapt to the new exercise movement, but it is not a resistance exercise.

Don't get me wrong--rowing is an excellent cardio exercise. But if you really want to strengthen and firm up any muscles, strength training is the best option.
July 24, 2012 5:04 AM
tone comes from having some muscle and being lean. so focus on your diet if you wan't to "tone".

But as stated above, I would reccommend strength training to increase muscle size, then worry about the weight loss.
July 26, 2012 7:37 AM
Thanks guys. I am watching some weights on eBay and hope to add a bit of light strength training to my workout. The weights are only little ones but my triceps are buggered so I'm starting small!
July 26, 2012 7:59 AM
QUOTE:

Rowing is primarily cardio. There will be a small increase in upper body strength and "tone" as you adapt to the new exercise movement, but it is not a resistance exercise.

Don't get me wrong--rowing is an excellent cardio exercise. But if you really want to strengthen and firm up any muscles, strength training is the best option.


this.
July 26, 2012 8:01 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Rowing is primarily cardio. There will be a small increase in upper body strength and "tone" as you adapt to the new exercise movement, but it is not a resistance exercise.

Don't get me wrong--rowing is an excellent cardio exercise. But if you really want to strengthen and firm up any muscles, strength training is the best option.


this.


Indeed. You look pretty good already, so my recommendation would be a full on beginner lifting routine while eating at maintenance until you stall and then decide what if any further change you want to make to your body.
July 26, 2012 8:09 AM
I am a runner primarily and have the same concerns about my arms (mainly to look good in the strapless wedding dress :) ). I row twice a week and have noticed a huge difference in my arms. Yes, it is mainly a cardio workout...but a lot of rowing machines have resistance settings. I put the resistance to a level 6 or 7 if I want a real arm workout...and it definitely gives me one! My arms always feel like jelly after a 5K row with a high resistance. However, I cant fully attribute it to rowing because I do rowing kinda like circuit training. I row 2K, then do 3 sets of 10 pushups, situps, frog jumps, and handstand pushups, then row 2K and 3 sets of 10 like before, then do an all out row 1K to finish the workout. Im sure its the combination of everything that has helped my arms look and feel better.

Also: I havent been lifting weights, just doing body weight exercises. I do plan on incorporating weights at some point though.
July 26, 2012 9:19 AM
QUOTE:

I am a runner primarily and have the same concerns about my arms (mainly to look good in the strapless wedding dress :) ). I row twice a week and have noticed a huge difference in my arms. Yes, it is mainly a cardio workout...but a lot of rowing machines have resistance settings. I put the resistance to a level 6 or 7 if I want a real arm workout...and it definitely gives me one! My arms always feel like jelly after a 5K row with a high resistance. However, I cant fully attribute it to rowing because I do rowing kinda like circuit training. I row 2K, then do 3 sets of 10 pushups, situps, frog jumps, and handstand pushups, then row 2K and 3 sets of 10 like before, then do an all out row 1K to finish the workout. Im sure its the combination of everything that has helped my arms look and feel better.

Also: I havent been lifting weights, just doing body weight exercises. I do plan on incorporating weights at some point though.


Rowing movements would primarily affect your back with some affect on your biceps. The pushups will work triceps along with chest and to a lesser degree, shoulders. With handstands if you mean full vertical then that would be mostly shoulder with some triceps and no chest. With my bias I would of course recommend working to bent over barbell rows, supine grip chinups, bench press, and standing overhead barbell press ;)
July 26, 2012 9:20 AM
QUOTE:

Thanks guys. I am watching some weights on eBay and hope to add a bit of light strength training to my workout. The weights are only little ones but my triceps are buggered so I'm starting small!


Do chair dips if you want to strengthen your triceps. Chair dips rock.
July 26, 2012 9:24 AM
Strength all the way. And don't worry about "bulking" I started strength training 3 months ago and the measurement around my upper arms have not increased, but my muscles are more visible and solid. You mentioned "little weights" so as a gauge I use 15 and 20lb weights for most bicep and tricep work. But my wimpy delts can only handle 5-10lbs.
  2722866
July 26, 2012 9:24 AM
Ordering tiny dumbbells for "light strength training" isn't going to do much for you except cost you a whole lot in shipping fees...
  22370417
July 26, 2012 9:26 AM
QUOTE:

I've been running for a week now but have noticed that my upper arms could do with a bit of work. I have quite decent biceps but also have a slight case of "bingo wings". I want to do some exercise to tone up my arms. There is a rowing machine at my gym. Can I use that to achieve this (how long a session?), or am I looking at buying dumbbells?


The rowing motion will work, back, shoulders and biceps, not your tricep area; that requires a pushing motion, not a pulling motion. I would suggest doing benchpress or variations of push-ups to target that area and stick with the cardio, caloric deficit and add in strength training. I suggest compound movements.
July 26, 2012 9:26 AM
Hi! Can you walk me through what a "beginner lifting routine" would look like?
I'm always too intimidated to walk over to the free weight section because I have no idea where to start.

I usually do various arm machines after cardio...
Edited by jesss5885 On July 26, 2012 9:28 AM
  20409350
July 26, 2012 9:27 AM
Rowing, done correctly, is primarily a leg workout. There are lots of exercises to strengthen and "Tone" Certainly resistance training would be the most obvious. Body weight exercises could included Chair dips, pushups, pullups.
July 26, 2012 9:29 AM
Anything is better than nothing, but results from doing isolation lifts with small dumbbells will be much less than doing compound barbell lifts (or their dumbbell versions with heavy DBs)
July 26, 2012 9:30 AM
QUOTE:

Rowing, done correctly, is primarily a leg workout. There are lots of exercises to strengthen and "Tone" Certainly resistance training would be the most obvious. Body weight exercises could included Chair dips, pushups, pullups.


As a former rower, this ^
July 26, 2012 9:33 AM
QUOTE:

Hi! Can you walk me through what a "beginner lifting routine" would look like?
I'm always too intimidated to walk over to the free weight section because I have no idea where to start.

I usually do various arm machines after cardio...


This link will tell you all you need to know for beginner weight training along with fat loss\nutrition

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=146519303

There is a link to a heavily strength based program with very fast strength progression which can be difficult on a calorie deficit, and one to a program with slower progression that is more forgiving on a calorie deficit.
July 26, 2012 10:04 AM
If you can only afford small weight set, go for a decent resistance band set. Unlimited exercise potential and all in a super small package to take where ever you want.

And yes to work arms and chest and core, do pressups/pushups and all the hundreds of pressup variations. Your body will give you a lifetime of workouts.
July 26, 2012 10:08 AM
You said "bingo wings". I choked on my water. Thank you for that laugh!
  9409936
July 26, 2012 10:08 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Hi! Can you walk me through what a "beginner lifting routine" would look like?
I'm always too intimidated to walk over to the free weight section because I have no idea where to start.

I usually do various arm machines after cardio...


This link will tell you all you need to know for beginner weight training along with fat loss\nutrition

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=146519303

There is a link to a heavily strength based program with very fast strength progression which can be difficult on a calorie deficit, and one to a program with slower progression that is more forgiving on a calorie deficit.


thank you so much!
  20409350
July 26, 2012 10:25 AM
QUOTE:

If your a gym member they will do you a beginners weights schedule x


though not always a good one
July 26, 2012 10:38 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

If your a gym member they will do you a beginners weights schedule x


though not always a good one


Agreed, I see inductions all the time and depending on the PT on induction duty people will fail forever if they listen to them.
July 26, 2012 11:01 AM
The best thing to do is find a time tested and well proven beginner routine to follow, and IF you feel that you can not train yourself on proper form on lifts via reading and watching videos, find a good PT, preferably one that looks like they lift, to train you on the lifts themselves. Explain to them up front that you have a routine in mind and do not need any input as far as exercise selection and programming goes, you simply want instruction and critique on form and nothing more.

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