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Row45, Long Island's first rowing studio, opens in Albertson

Craig Hatchett of Row45 in Albertson. (2014)

Craig Hatchett of Row45 in Albertson. (2014) Credit: Row45

Rowing is having its moment on Long Island, and it’s landlocked in a studio in Albertson.

Row45, thought to be Long Island’s only singular rowing facility, is situated in a studio room within D-FINE Fitness’ facilities and contains 11 machines with exercise mats set beside them.

I decided to give rowing a try in a 45-minute workout. Starting off with a light row, instructor and Row45 president Craig Hatchett discussed proper technique and rowing form, demonstrating new motions on a machine next to us.

A good portion of the class was spent on the machine, completing 50-meter sprint rows as well as twisting and holding row techniques that Hatchett explained were aimed at targeting different areas of the body. All this to the sounds of hip-hop music.

It was the time off the machine — broken up between sprints — that helped to expand the full-body toning portion of the workout. While on the exercise mat, Hatchett asked us to do a number of motions, from squats to planks, even mixing in yoga and dumbbells.

Hatchett said that the idea to open a rowing studio came to him while sitting on a row machine on a visit to Miami. He thought: “If people can sit on a bike for 45 minutes, they can sit on a rowing machine.”

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Daniel M. Vaknin, a physical therapist with North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System, said that exercising on a rowing machine “provides many fitness benefits” and gives a full-body workout.

Vaknin said that rowing increases cardiovascular fitness and endurance as well as targeting “major muscles groups of the lower extremities, core and upper extremities.”

Rowing, however, may not be right for everyone. “Because it utilizes your entire body, it can put tremendous stress on the heart of someone suffering from heart disease,” said Vaknin. Additionally, if done without proper form, “one runs the risk of causing an injury to the lower back, neck, knees and or shoulders.”

To be safe, Vaknin recommends checking with your physician before starting a rowing-based exercise regimen.

For those interested in taking a Row45 class, Hatchett offers a complimentary session, with single classes priced at $25 per session thereafter. More information can be found at row45.com. The studio is at 1 Albertson Ave., Albertson.

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