Is 1 Or 10 Harder On Rowing Machine

Is 1 or 10 Harder on a Rowing Machine?


Rowing machines are a popular choice for individuals looking to incorporate cardiovascular exercise into their fitness routine. They provide a full-body workout, engaging multiple muscle groups simultaneously. However, when it comes to setting the resistance level on a rowing machine, many people wonder whether 1 or 10 is harder. Let’s delve into this question and explore the differences between the two settings.

Understanding the Resistance Levels

Rowing machines typically offer various resistance settings that can be adjusted according to the user’s fitness level and workout goals. These settings are represented numerically, usually ranging from 1 to 10.

Resistance level 1 is the lowest setting and requires the least amount of effort to row. This setting is ideal for beginners, individuals recovering from injuries, or those simply looking for a light warm-up or cool-down exercise. The resistance at level 1 mimics the feeling of rowing a boat on calm waters.

On the other hand, resistance level 10 is the highest setting and requires the most effort to row. This setting is suitable for experienced rowers or individuals seeking an intense workout. The resistance at level 10 simulates rowing against strong currents, providing a challenging and demanding exercise session.

Which is Harder?

The difficulty level between 1 and 10 on a rowing machine depends on various factors, including an individual’s fitness level, strength, and endurance. What may feel challenging for one person might be relatively easy for another.

Generally, resistance level 10 is considered harder than level 1. The increased resistance requires more strength and power to overcome, resulting in a more intense workout. Rowing at level 10 engages the muscles more deeply and provides a higher cardiovascular demand, leading to improved endurance and strength over time.

However, it is essential to listen to your body and choose a resistance level that suits your fitness goals and capabilities. If you are a beginner or have any physical limitations, starting at level 1 and gradually progressing to higher levels is recommended.


Choosing the appropriate resistance level on a rowing machine depends on your fitness level, goals, and overall physical condition. While level 10 offers a more challenging and intense workout, level 1 provides a starting point for beginners and individuals with limitations.

Remember to consult with a fitness professional or trainer to determine the best resistance level for your specific needs. Regular rowing machine workouts, regardless of the resistance level, can contribute to improved cardiovascular health, increased muscle tone, and enhanced overall fitness.

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