Having the best rowing machine right in the comfort of your home will give you the push require to get your muscles moving and catapulting you to a new fitness level. A rower does so in a challenging but comfortable way yet delivers outstanding results.
Choosing the right rowing machine is very beneficial. It is only the best machine that provides for efficient workouts on your legs and core. This is in addition to giving you proper cardiovascular workouts.
Choosing the best machine saves you from possible joint strains. This is because such a machine has a very minimal impact on joints. Furthermore, choosing the best machine for rowing enables you to burn calories with ease, manage or eliminate stress, build on body endurance and tone your body muscles to keep it in good shape.
We have tested and analyzed a good number of rowing machines. We now present to you the machines that, in our assessment, are the best to choose from.
Best Rowing Machine Reviews 
Frequent use of the rowing machine will help you increase your fitness by burning calories and building muscle in a low-impact and safe way. In this article, we intend to present you with in-depth and helpful reviews of the top 6 rowing machines currently in the market.
Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5
This is one of the most popular rowing machines you can find for your indoor workouts. Indeed, it has become the standard machine for indoor rowing. This is not shocking considering that it boasts of quality engineering that provides for effective workouts. The machine is available in black and light grey colors.
This machine’s design is probably what makes it very popular with both beginners and established rowers. The damper is spiral in design, which allows for ease of adjusting airflow into the flywheel. The design also allows you to change the stroke feel to your preferred level. The design of the flywheel also ensures that you have a smooth feel in addition to minimizing noise during operation.
The machine is also designed with a frame-lock mechanism that requires the use of any tools. This makes it possible for you to dismantle the machine into two pieces for ease of storage.
Unlike most rowing machines, the Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine features adjustable footrests for easy sizing. Indeed, you can use the footrests wearing any shoe size.
Furthermore, the handle is ergonomic in design with a 10-degree bend for easy rowing. Although the machine has impeccable design, it is one of the easiest to use. That is why beginners also find it a good choice. Assembling the machine is not only easy but also straightforward. Indeed, you do not need any tools during assembly.
The Concept2 Model Indoor Rowing Machine has a length of 96 inches and a width of 24 inches. It requires space of at least aft by 2ft during operation. It has a seat height of 14 inches and supports a maximum weight of 227 kg.
Buying this machine entitles you to a performance monitor (Monitor 5), which you use to track your workout speed, distance covered, workout pace, and burnt calories. The monitor is illuminated from the back and it lights up immediately you begin to work out.
The good thing about the monitor is that it is USB compatible and has existing workout programs and games. The programs are also available in multiple languages for your convenience. Apart from the monitor, the machine is also available with a user manual, a start guide and the necessary assembly tools.
Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 Rowing Machine
This is the rowing machine you need to choose if you have a restricted workout space. Not only is it a good value for your money but also provides for rowing workouts in your home or at the office.
The machine is highly functional all-around. Indeed, its design turns it into a glider. It is designed with hydraulic resistance mechanism complete with a roller system that makes use of deluxe ball-bearings. This mechanism provides for both smooth and convenience rowing workout experience.
The fact that you can adjust the machine to suit your rowing workout need is a big plus. Indeed, you can adjust the machine depending on both your rowing intensity and speed.
Both the cylinder resistance rowing arms and the hydraulic mechanism are also adjustable, providing for effective workouts. The machine is available with a highly functional monitor that displays all relevant workout data and a padded seat.
This rowing machines that you should find very easy to use. Indeed, assembling the machine is very simple and no technicalities are involved. Furthermore, the machine is highly portable since it folds nicely for ease of mobility.
This machine is designed to last a lifetime. The in the frame is made of steel. The center beam is made of aluminum, making it one of the durable rowing machines you can find.
The Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 Rowing Machine is one of the smallest yet efficient rowing machines that you can find. It measures only 50 inches in length and 12 inches in width when fully assembled.
Stamina Avari Programmable Magnetic Exercise Rower
This is a valuable rowing machine to have for your regular indoor cardiovascular workouts. In addition to working your core body muscles, the machine is also very effective for aerobic exercises.
Indeed, you can use it both as a warm-up and as a regular rowing machine. Of special mention is the fact that it is the only machine in Stamina’s series of rowing machines that are programmable. It is also the only Stamina’s machine that features a chest strap for monitoring your heart rate.
Stamina rowing machines are known for their superior design. Like with the others, this machine is designed with the magnetic type of resistance. This no doubt makes your strokes smooth and easy. It is compact and, therefore, highly portable. Indeed, it fits in small workout spaces. You can use it both at home and at the office.
This machine boasts of several valuable features for your convenience. It features LCD in Touch Fitness Monitor that hosts up to 12 programs. In addition to these are 7 other preset programs that adjust the magnetic tension automatically. This provides a maximum workout of your body muscles.
This should be your choice if you are shopping for a rowing machine that is easy to use yet functional. You should find it easy to assemble using the provided tools. It is very quiet during operation and you can comfortably listen to music or watch a TV program while working out
The Stamina Avari Programmable Magnetic Exercise Rower is a very durable machine. The main frame is made of steel with the foldable beam made of aluminum. The seat also durable considering that it is molded.
WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine
The WaterRower Natural is unique, handcrafted rowing machine made from ash wood and finished with Danish oil and honey oak stain. Ash Wood is known for its ability to absorb sound and vibration which enhances smooth operation and quiet performance.
This machine will take you to the next level of fitness by using the same teachings that control the dynamics of a boat in the water. It is outfitted with what its manufacturer calls flywheel.
The flywheel consists of paddles in a covered tank of water to offer smooth, quiet resistance just like it happens in the actual water body. This means the machine is devoid of any moving parts that have the tendency to wear out over time.
The water tank, as well as the flywheel, creates an auto-regulating system that eliminated the need for a motor.
According to the makers of WaterRower Natural, the machine can work out impressive 84 percent of your muscle mass. This helps to tone and strengthen the muscles while potentiating more calorie burning than any other cardio machines.
The rower is fitted with a series four (S4) performance monitor cleverly engineered to balance user-friendliness with technical sophistication. The monitor displays your workout intensity, heart rate, stroke rate, duration zone bar, and distance.
For your convenience, the monitor is compatible with an optional heart rate chest strap and receiver. This technology will help you to maximize your exercise output and realize your fitness goals. Few rowers can boast of such sophistication.
WaterRower design includes double rails featuring 4 corner wheels to increase the stability of the seat and minimize the chances of sweat build-up. The design also includes a frame made to flip upright for easy storage. The machine has up to 1000 pounds of weight capacity. In terms of dimensions, the machine weighs 117 pounds and measures 84W by 21H by 22D inches.
Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 12 Adjustable Resistance Rowing Machine
Sunny Health and Fitness have, over the past decade, excited the fitness industry by distributing some of the best cardio fitness equipment. At the center of that is the SF-RW1205 12 Rowing Machine.
The rower is made of a strong, sleek and durable steel frame that will withstand impact and years of extensive use. It features large-sized, textured pedals with safety harnesses. This will provide you with a non-slip surface as well as the security of high-quality straps.
The rower also features a comfortable ergonomic seat that is cushioned to provide optimal comfort for the rowing experience. This means you can work out for longer and get stronger.
Furthermore, SF-RW1205 features a fully cushioned handle that provides for a wider range of motion to offer you more intense upper body workout. The handle also features multiple levels of adjustability tension to allow you to change your daily routine and challenge yourself on your journey of fitness.
The 12 in the name of this rowing machine means it presents you with 12 workout programs including 6 cardio profiles, 4 custom user programs, 1 manual, and a single heart rate program.
It also comes with a fitness monitor meant to motivate you always by keeping track of distance covered, the time taken, the number of counts achieved, calories burned, and a number of strokes per minute, pulse rate and wattage.
The monitor is user-friendly. All you do is simply use up/down arrows on the fitness monitor to adjust work out resistance and time on the go. The LCD backlight in the monitor is not only elegant but functional. It gives the unit professional touch while adding to user user-friendliness.
The user weight limit is 220 pounds while the item weights a paltry 20Ibs. It measures 53L x 20W x 22H inches. It’s a great machine to take home for your fitness needs.
Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower
If you are still unconvinced by the above-reviewed rowing machines, then this drum magnetic control exercise rower may be what you are looking for. It features a comfortable and ergonomic design that allows you to row all day long without having a negative impact on your body.
Besides the 12 programs, Velocity Exercise also features seven preset programs engineered to adjust the magnetic tension automatically to optimize your cardio workout without unnecessary interruptions. This advanced technology means your workout sessions will always be efficient and more reliable with guaranteed results.
The machine comes with a chest strap which you can use during any program but is especially useful when you want to use a targeted heart rate program. It also has a molded seat for stability and comfort during use.
In addition to this, the machine features an extruded aluminum beam designed to provide smooth operation through the drive and the recovery cycles of your workout sessions.
One thing you will like about this rowing machine from Velocity Exercise is installation. It comes mostly pre-assembled with the remaining few parts extremely easy to set up.
Although the rowing machine is great for performance and design, some users have complained about the bolt that attaches the front stabilizing bar to the machine.
Rowing Machines Benefits and FAQ’s
Rowing Machine Benefits:
- Solid full-body workout
- Great Aerobic and Anaerobic workout
- Great at burning calories (600-1,000 calories in 1 hour)
- You simultaneously work out the lower and upper body and get cardio thus saving time
- Best for low impact workout
- Non-weight bearing features
Rowing machines do help in losing weight, burning calories, as well as building lean muscle.
Gyms today are chock-full of inspirational workout machines and regimens that will add some knack into your routines and increase your muscle health. If you are fed up with your current workout routine or the thought of another shoulder press is enough to make you want to sleep, it is high time for you to shake things up.
We recommend using rowing machines which are currently on an upward trend attracting both professionals and beginners. The idea of rowing machines is simple, an individual or a group of regulars each sit on their rowing machine and sweat through a 30 minute to one-hour training that is aimed at mimicking the benefits of actual water-based rowing.
You might be asking why to use rowing machines instead of other workout devices. The answer is straightforward; rowing machines provide gym-goers an opportunity to exercise individually or in groups while been relatively low cost and affordable.
Lastly, it focuses on several fitness features that we will discuss below:
Enhances Cardiovascular Fitness
Every time you carry out sustained exercises, it increases your breath volume and heart rate in the process of improving your cardiovascular health. Rowing is excellent for the lungs and heart because it employs every major muscle group in our bodies.
This, in turn, makes your heart pump more blood to your muscle tissues thus delivering nutrients and energy to your cells while doing away with waste products such as lactic acid and carbon dioxide.
Since our bodies are highly efficient and do not like to exert themselves, they make physiological changes that ensure future exertions are easier eventually improving your cardiovascular abilities.
Rowing is also an appropriate form of exercise for individuals who feel physically uncomfortable while performing weight-bearing workouts such as jogging, walking, and other aerobic activities.
Rowing is easy on your joints provided you maintain a good form while using the gear. This is because your hands keep in contact with the machine’s handles while your feet stay in touch with the apparatuses’ foot pads.
This also ensures there is no or little impact placed on the shoulders, elbows, ankles, knees, and hips all of which are susceptible to injuries.
Individually or as a Group
Similar to water-based rowing, exercises carried out on rowing machines can be performed in a group setting or independently. In fact, Group rowing sessions are exploding all over the country as a substitute for group cycling exercises. They are all held comparably with pumping music and a choreographed regimen that is aligned to the beats of the playlist.
It also incorporates high energy trainers; rowing is, therefore, a fun alternative for those who want the advantages of rowing but do not want to work out alone.
If you also prefer to go solo, you can buy a rower for your home or mount a rowing machine at your favorite gym and go at your own pace.
Increases Endurance and Muscular Strength
First, it’s vital to know muscle endurance and muscle strength have different meanings. Muscle strength refers to how much weight a specific muscle group can lift in a single exertion.
On the other hand muscle endurance refers to how much weight a particular muscle group can lift continually over a period. Rowing enhances both of these traits, while rowing you are always pulling and pushing against resistance during the entire workout. This spurs physiological alterations that allow a muscle group to continue employing force without fatigue.
Furthermore, by augmenting resistance over time, your muscles will develop and grow ultimately becoming stronger.
Rowing is Generally Low Cost
Compared to other cardio equipment, rowing machines are cheaper. The leading commercial rowing machine producers in the nation, Concept2, sell their popular indoor Rowing machines.
Although the comparisons mentioned above are based on commercial-graded gear meant to whether high levels of abuse and use, the same price discrepancies manifest themselves in the residential machine’s arena.
Some rowers go for as little as $300. However, the quality and price are correlated. We, therefore, recommend performing due diligence before making a purchase.
Rowing is an excellent form of exercise, yet it is not without its risks. A poor form can lead to injuries primarily to the lower back in the drive stage of the workout.
If you have never used a rowing device before, ensure you have proper input on how to use it from a certified trainer. You are assured to get a heart-pumping and gut-wrenching exercise from using rowing devices. They are appropriate for all fitness levels, from beginners to seasoned athletes and they have no age limit. Get out there and realize your fitness goals by exercising on a rowing machine.
You definitely cannot ignore the benefits of partaking in cardiovascular exercises. You can only obtain the benefits by choosing the best rowing machine. It is only by selecting the best that you invest in a durable, effective, and efficient machine that provides for low impact on your joints, a machine that is easy to operate but delivers quality workouts.
Q: Does the rowing machine help lose weight?
Ans: This is a common question, and the answer is, Yes!
A rowing machine will help you lose weight. It offers an effective option for sports and running, and that’s why most people suffering from joints/knee 8 ankles pain prefer it because the cardiovascular exercises are just as effective.
And, a rowing machine will not only help you shed off some pounds within a short period depending on how frequent you are using it, but it will also leave you in the best shape.
It will make you stronger, leaner, while also helping you improve your cardiovascular capabilities.
As you have learned from our reviews of the best rowing machines, it is not hard to find an excellent machine for your home use. All you need to do is to carry out some little research.
Rowing machines are great because they enable you to achieve full fitness in a challenging but comfortable manner. This form of exercise works on nearly all muscles of the body leaving you toned and with the strength of a giant. Check these high-quality rowing machines out and I believe you will most likely find something to take home.
We took the time to test and analyze the above rowing machine. In our overall assessment, they turn out to be the best on the market at the moment. Apart from their durability and high performance, they are also pocket-friendly.
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