Activities such as jogging or running on a treadmill, while providing a good cardiovascular workout,
other joint problems later in life from performing high-impact exercises like this.
A much better solution is to insist on a low-impact training schedule, and this is where exercise rowing machines have a great advantage. The machines provide a smooth, low-impact, high-results workout that is suitable for nearly anyone in good health. The risk of damaging knee or hip joints, for example, on a rowing machine is significantly less than with jogging or other high-impact, high-risk exercises.
When it comes to purchasing an exercise rowing machine, there are several things you will want to keep in mind, including the type of machine and the resistance it provides.
The most important difference between rowing machines is how they create resistance. Some types use a fan that creates a high level of resistance by forcing air through a compression chamber. This "air resistance" type of machine provides very smooth action, and a decent level of resistance. On the downside, these machines can also be quite noisy.
Hydraulic rowing machines use a mechanical hydraulic chamber to create a high level of resistance. Hydraulic machines are not as smooth as the air type, but on the plus side, they do tend to be extremely quiet, and are easy to adjust from one level of resistance to another.
Whichever type of machine you decide upon, you also want to consider the kind of footrest used.
Ideally, you want solid foot rests that are comfortable, but not too restrictive. Also make sure that the foot rests are large enough, and provide some type of anti-skid traction on the surface to keep your foot firmly in place.
Finally, like all exercise machines these days, most rowing machines will also have a computer on board to help you keep track of speed, time, distance, and even pulse rate. While it is important to note that an exercise rowing machine with a built-in computer tends to be quite a bit more expensive than their non-computer counterparts, in the long run they are worth the additional expense if you're serious about getting the best workout.