Rowing has been a social activity since the time humans started paddling in the water. It’s one of the oldest Olympic group sports, and many an Ivy League college has a crew team. But indoor rowing machines are a mostly solitaire affair.
That’s not very inspiring to those who like to workout this way, according to rowing enthusiast Nick Sheedy. He aims to bring the social aspect of outdoor rowing to the great indoors with a new iOS app and performance monitor that will hook up to almost any rowing machine.
Called Live Rowing, the app, and device enables rowers to go boat-to-boat in a racing challenge, see how well they stack up in time, distance and calories burned or check in with friends and hold each other accountable.
It does this by mounting the Connect2 Rower monitor to the machine and then hooking up the LiveRowing Connect with Apple Lightning cable to your phone. The monitor is then able to pick up data from any digital display and relay that back to the app.
The TechCrunch video team and I went to a local San Francisco gym to meet up with Sheedy to see how Live Rowing operates. Let’s just say I got schooled in a row boat challenge. So sit back and enjoy as I huff and puff for all of you in this one.