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Games Ideas

If you have an idea for a game using the Indoor Rower please complete this quick form and we'll add it to this page if it's a good one. If you have any comments about these games, please email us.

Add a new game idea

Match Play IRGOLF

This game encourages experimentation with stroke pressure as you drive the ball to different distances.


  1. The first to row takes the number of strokes defined by the par of the hole, i.e. Hole 1, Par 4 = 4 strokes.
  2. Player 1 rows the 4 strokes and records the distance achieved in the box provided.
  3. Player 2 then tries to replicate the distanced rowed by player 1.
  4. Players alternate who tees off, i.e. who rows first.


  • If player 2 gets within 5m of the distance of player 1, then player 2 wins the hole and scores 1 point.
  • If player 2 gets within 10m of the distance of player 1, the hole is halved and both players get half a point.
  • If player 2 is more than 10m away from the distance of player 1 then player 1 wins the hole and scores 1 point

The player with the highest score at the end wins the game.

Below you can download a scorecard that you can print out and also a class sheet containing further information.

Download Scorecard Download Class Sheet


This game idea has been submitted by Peter Brewer, who teaches at Putney High School



  1. Bat & ball (or football)
  2. Bowling marker
  3. Marker for the batter
  4. Stump marker
  5. Rowing machine

To play safely you'll need a large sports hall or to go outside.

The group is spilt into two teams: Batters and Fielders.

The batting team has one person batting and one on the rowing machine.

Before starting, set a 'Single Time Workout' on the performance monitor. This will determine the duration of the innings - try 4 mins as a good starting point.

Once the batter has hit (or kicked) the ball the rower starts rowing as hard as possible until the fielding team gets the ball back, and stumps the cage of the rowing machine or your other stump marker.

The rower then becomes the batter and a third team member jumps onto the rowing machine. The third member must not start rowing until the second person has hit/kicked the ball but the timer will still be counting down.

Continue with further team members until the counter reaches zero.

When the counter reaches zero, the innings is finished and the teams swap over - with the fielding team having to beat the score which the batting team set.

You can make it a 1, 3 or 5 round game, either using total distance rowed (as shown on the monitor) or by giving points to the winning team.

As in rounders proper, if you catch someone out they are no longer allowed to compete.

Penalty Shootout

This game has been submitted by London Youth Rowing.

You will need 2 rowing machines and 2 equal teams


  1. Team One - Attackers (strikers plus forwards)
  2. Team Two - Defenders (goalie plus defence)
  3. Attacker - First team member rows 5 strokes
  4. Defender - Rows 5 strokes - if they have equalled the distance of bettered it, they have prevented the goal
  5. If the defender has successfully defended the goal then he/she stays on the machine, the attacker swaps over regardless
  6. The attackers have 5 opportunities to score before the teams swap over

Award Criteria

The team who has accumulated the most points wins. If the points are equal, then look at accumulated metres rowed to separate the teams.

What is this good for?

Promoting teamwork and good technique (slide control)

Oarsome Ideas! (variations)

  1. If you are able to play this game outside - make the attackers also have to score a goal with a football before the point can be gained.
  2. Why not try to integrate the idea into an actual game of football to make it more interesting?
Download the Scorecard (0.5mb PDF)

C2 Calorie Challenge

Challenge yourself to burn a set number of calories in the target time, choose from a 20 calorie jelly bean in 2 minutes through to a full 350 calorie pizza in 25, or set your own target time.

Set Up

You will need to download the software (below), a PM3 or PM4 monitor, a USB cable and access to a computer near your Indoor Rower.

Download the Calorie Challenge Software (19mb .zip)

Some of the games, ideas and suggestions on these pages are user contributed and are made available for information only. Indoor Sport Services have not undertaken any risk assessment on them and accept no responsibility for their use in your school. We hope that they prove safe, fun and useful but please be aware that you use them at your own risk.