Upper body training for rowing often gets minimized because of the notion that the lower body produces the majority of force in the rowing stroke. While this is true, all of that lower body power has to go through the upper body, shoulders, arms, and hands, in order to get to the handle! Rowers also need to train the upper body to reduce risk of injury. Low back pain and rib stress injuries are two of the most common rowing injuries costing the most amount of missed training time, and rowing research notes poor upper body strength as a risk factor for both injuries. In this Complete Guide article, we’ll cover upper body training for rowing performance and reduced risk of injury, including relevant rowing research, specific strength training methods for in-season and off-season training, and upper body exercises I do and don’t use.
Table of Contents
- Upper Body Training for Rowing: The Why
- Beginner Level Exercises
- Intermediate Level Exercises
- Advanced Level Exercises
- Off-Season/In-Season Programming
- Wrapping Up