Why You Shouldn’t Set Your Rower to 10

Why You Shouldn’t Set Your Rower to 10

You don’t go grab a barbell and load it up with your 1RM and start your workout there, do you? Of course not. So why do so many people set their erg to 10 and set off to row? Good question, huh? Read on and find out why setting your erg at 10 is almost never a good idea.

How the Rower Works

For starters, let’s discuss briefly how indoor rowers work, because I’m an engineer and this is my chance to be nerdy. When you think of rowing, you think of boats and rowing on the water, right? Guess how much water is used in the operation of these Concept 2 rowers? That’s right — none! (Well, unless you are sweaty like me, then things might get a little damp. But I digress.)

Indoor rower doesn’t sound as cool as calling it an erg. Erg comes from the word ergometer, which simply means a device that measures the amount of work being performed.

You knew there was no water involved, but do you know what provides the resistance with each and every pull you make? Here’s a hint: you breathe it. Yup, air! Good ole air provides all the pulse quickening and pain inducing you could ever want, and yet always leaves you gasping for more air. Air is a tricky character sometimes.

Inside the round chamber on the rower is a device called a flywheel. A flywheel stores rotational energy. Also, the flywheel has a high moment of inertia, which is demonstrated by the difficulty/extra energy that must be spent at the beginning of your row to get the wheel spinning (i.e. you must give more torque!). The stored energy couples with this same high inertia to produce the momentum that keeps the wheel spinning after you stop pulling on the chain.

Got all that? Good. (1)

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Cleaning up some OH Squat technique from Friday!

Thursday January 29th, 2014

A) Deadlift 3 x 2 (Compare to January 5th)

B) 15 min AMRAP:

  • 5 Pullups
  • 10 Pushups
  • 5 Deadlifts at 70% of 2RM (mix grip)

Goal: Go unbroken-rest an needed to do so

coming Friday…

A) 8minutes:

  • Rowing- Max Cal

B) 8 minutes:

  • Pistol & Squat Snatch (135/95)-…

C) 8 minutes:

  • Situps & KB Swing (Russian)-….

(Rest 2 minutes between rounds)


  • Row Pace M-2:00 F-2:20
  • Couplets: Unbroken Sets