Rowing Crazy


“We Don’t Just Talk About Rowing
We Actually Row!”

“We Don’t Just Talk About Rowing – We Actually Row!”

Our Rowing Machine Distance Calculator Makes Every Stroke Count!

Rowing machine distance calculator makes every stroke count

Hi everyone!

Let’s face it, not everyone has the latest, most up-to-date rowing machine. Or car. Or television!

If you have an older rowing machine that works fine, you may not want to buy a new one but want to know the distance you are traveling in a certain time frame.

Maybe you’ve read about Concept2’s One Minute Row Erg rankings (check out our review of Concept 2 vs Hydrow ) and wanted to know how you’d fare? Loren Howard (male, 34 y.o.) holds the 2018 record for the farthest distance rowed (429 meters) in 1 minute. How far do you think can you row?

The Distance Rowed should be easy to find from the performance monitor, but what if your rowing machine doesn’t show the distance or you just want to double-check the figure?

Check Out Our Simple Rowing Distance Calculator

It’s that easy with our distance calculator, simply enter your workout details and find out how far you have rowed.

Rowing Distance Calculator

Distance Rowed:

I’m sure that you’re going to refer to this article again and again, so bookmark this page!

Rowing Machine Distance Calculator

One way to calculate your total distance rowed if your rowing machine’s basic performance monitor doesn’t track it is to use a heart rate monitor ( you can check our the Hydrow Heart Rate Monitor here ) or a fitness data tracker, making sure that it measures calories burned.

How Do I Use the Distance Calculator?

After your workout, take note of the following numbers and type them into the distance calculator shown above:

  • Calories burned
  • Workout duration

The rowing machine distance calculator will give you the distance traveled in meters.

Cool, isn’t it?

Calculating Distance Rowed Based on Split Time

Tracking your progress will be a lot easier if you have more data at your disposal, that’s why knowing the distance you row during workouts is important.

Besides the distance calculator above, you can easily calculate your distance rowed using split time ( read more on how to improve your rowing split times ) and workout time. 

How Do I Manually Calculate Total Distance Rowed?

You can use the formula below to manually calculate your distance rowed or double-check a figure obtained from the calculator or elsewhere.

First, a little background about the split or split time.

Your split is the time it takes you to complete a 500-meter row. In a way, it’s like your speed, except that speed is described as distance over time (like your car’s speed is in KPH or MPH), while split is expressed as time over a 500-m distance.

total distance rowed formula

Using the general relationship between distance, speed, and time, but sparing you the maths, we get the formula below:

Distance Rowed = 500/Split x Workout Duration

where the split and workout duration are in seconds, while the distance rowed is in meters.

It’s always easier with an example, so here’s one:

  • Split time = 1 minute 45 seconds (or 105 seconds)
  • Workout duration = 15 minutes (or 900 seconds)

Distance Rowed = 500/105 x 900 = 4,285.7 meters

Conversely, if you know your split and want to figure out how long it will take you to do a specific distance on a rowing machine, you can flip the formula and calculate the time or workout duration (in seconds) with this:

Workout Duration = Distance Rowed x Split /500

What Is a Good Time for a 1,000-Meter Distance?

men and women doing indoor rowing workout in a gym

While most people (and most ergs) measure the split time, it’s good to know what the ideal 1,000-meter pace is.

The good time to row 1,000 meters for men would be about 3 minutes 22 seconds.

For a 20-year-old male, 3 minutes 24 seconds is a good time, while a 50-year-old male with an average amount of rowing experience, a good time would be 3 minutes 35 seconds.

You might be looking at these numbers and thinking, “It’s only a matter of seconds!” and you would be correct!

Think of how many Olympic games are lost (or won) by fractions of a second! Shaving two seconds off your time might sound trivial on paper, but try it. You’ll find that those two seconds are hard to come by!

When it comes to women, a good rowing time for 1,000 meters would be 4 minutes and 2 seconds. Expect a 20-year-old female with an average amount of experience to complete the distance in 4 minutes and 7 seconds, and about 7 seconds longer for a 50-year-old female.

a lady working out indoors using a rowing machine

Of course a rower’s weight, height, and rowing intensity will all make a difference, but the numbers above are general and would be a good place to start if you wanted to beat the “average” time.

If you’re a beginner, you might think that rowing fast is the key to a lower split time. That’s a common misconception. Your stroke rate or strokes per minute (SPM) does not translate to the power applied on the oars (or rowing machine handle).

Read more about rowing strokes per minute from Rowing Instructor Laura Tanley as she explains why stroke rate is not a measure of power and what improving your SPM means.

What Is the Fastest Time Ever Recorded for a 1,000-Meter Distance?

Max Secunda with other people during a training session at a gym

I’m sure this changes every few years, but the last record that I can find is dated October 2022. The indoor rowing championships listed former rugby player James Hall for posting an incredible 2:39.3!

I am blown away by this number! I can’t even imagine what he must have looked like doing this kind of speed!

Also in 2022, the fastest time for the indoor rowing championships for women was set by Swedish athlete Cissi Velin at an astounding 3:06.2.

The Bottom Line on Rowing Distance Calculators

If you’re new to rowing, these times and distance measurements might sound strange, but you do get used to them.

You can also use the calculator and formula above to determine if your erg PM monitor is giving you an accurate readout or doesn’t show the metric you need or want.

I hope you found this online calculator helpful in measuring your distance (or time) so you can feel confident on your erg.

Stay fit always, everyone, and have fun rowing!