Using a rowing machine is an endurance exercise that increases heart function and uses carbohydrates to provide the energy required to exercise. Keeping the rowing machine tension at a low level allows you to maintain a high rate of speed with little resistance in order to reach and maintain an aerobic state. Aerobic exercise improves lung, heart and circulation systems and is the cornerstone of an effective exercise routine.
Rowing uses virtually every major muscle group in your body. With little pressure on the joints, due to the activity's low-impact nature, rowers work their legs, hips and buttocks with each stroke. They also use upper-body muscles, strengthening the back, shoulders and arms. The trunk and core are engaged in the exercise as the rower performs each stroke. You can adjust most rowing machines to create a tighter resistance to increase the rate at which you build muscle.
If you'd rather perform a rowing workout at home than in the gym, you can buy a rowing machine for convenience -- and then fold the machine and store it out of sight. If you're short on time, place your rowing machine in front of the TV to exercise as you relax in the evening.Cardiovascular workouts, in particular, increase the amount of endorphins released in the body, which can reduce stress and even lift feelings of depression.