Best Rowing Machine Reviews
Rowing Machine King is a one-stop-shop for everything you need to know about rowing machines. I provide the best rowing machine reviews and informational articles you will find anywhere!
Walk through choosing a rower in the Start Here page or feel free to browse below!
Compare all rowing machine reviews by ratings, features, price, resistance, and much more!
The rowing machine comparison table will allow you to find the best rowing machine in the category of your interest.
Want to learn about different rowing machine topics? Visit the articles section for informational posts, FAQ, rowing machine benefits, etc..
Want the best rowing machine reviews around? I provide thorough reviews of all the top rowers with in-depth analysis of all the major features.
New to Rowing? Check out 3 easy articles to get you started!
Rowing Machine Benefits
So you are thinking of buying a rowing machine, but what are the benefits? The short answer is a lot!
Rowing machines provide a full body workout that increases strength and cardiovascular endurance.
See more amazing rowing machine benefits.
Rowing Machine Buyer’s Guide
Want to buy a rowing machine but confused where to start!? Look no further than my Rowing Machine Buyer’s Guide.
Learn about important questions like, do you have enough space? What’s your budget? What resistance type do you need?
“I really want the best rowing machine!!” Yes, we all do, but which is the best rowing machine for 2015?
I break down what makes a rowing machine great and which is the best for 2015. Just in case you don’t like my choice, I provide my top 5 best rowers to give you a few options. Enjoy!
Check out the Top 3 Workout Articles
At every gym, rowing machines sit unused in the corner while treadmills and ellipticals are full! Maybe people don’t know how to use them or don’t understand their full benefits?
Either way this article will get you on a rowing machine instantly after you read about all the positive things it does for your body!
You like the idea of a rowing machine, but will it help you lose weight?
The short answer is yes but come find out why!
Also, find out about the most important aspect of a weight loss program and then learn my two favorite rowing workouts for losing weight and burning fat.
One of the most frequently asked questions!
When deciding on making a large purchase like a rowing machine or treadmill, you want to make sure you are buying the right piece of equipment.
This article breaks down which machine is better by analyzing 3 important questions.
The Ultimate Total Body Workout Machine
Rowing machines are regarded as one of the best total body workout machines available on the market today but don’t just take my word for it!
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, rowing machines are the “best exercise equipment in the gym” because “it’s a total fitness machine” that allows you to “exercise every major muscle group in the body in a smooth, controlled manner”.
According to Men’s Health Magazine, “Rowing machines provide the best total-body workout of any cardio machine. This is because they require equal effort from both your lower and your upper body, which could lead to greater gains in overall cardiovascular fitness.”
Each of my rowing machine reviews break down how effective the rower is at providing a complete full body workout. I discuss resistance strength, smoothness, and much more!
Rowing Machines: All Ages & Fitness Levels
Before I knew anything about rowing machines, I assumed they were just for people that rowed boats in the water and they were to difficult to learn. That is FAR FROM THE TRUTH!
You don’t need any previous experience on a rowing machine or boat to use it correctly and effectively.
I’ve seen people of all ages rowing on a rower. Children rowing on the same machines adults row on, to senior citizens that have very weak joints and are looking to get back into shape.
Speaking of weak joints, that’s one of the main reasons I fell in love with rowing machines, because they don’t put any stress on your knees and ankles. Rowing machines are also perfect for people rehabilitating an injury.
It doesn’t matter what age you are – if you want to row on a machine, just hop on and start rowing!
Fitness level doesn’t matter, from someone that’s never exercised before to an olympian athlete, most rowing machines have adjustable resistance which also makes it perfect for households with multiple people and varying fitness levels.
My rowing machine reviews break down which is the best rowing machine for different age & fitness levels. Some very fit users may need a more advance rower than an elderly person just looking to move a little more throughout the day.
If you are nervous about purchasing a rower because you have never used one before, do not worry! There are tons of videos out there to teach you, like the one below. Just take your time and take it slow.
TIP: Rowing Machines are easy to use but I advise watching videos on proper form when using one for your first time.
Here’s a great video: How To Do a Rowing Stroke
Rowing Machine Information for Beginners
Required Space & Storage: Most rowing machines require the footprint of [at least] a love seat sofa while in use, but most also have storage options that will allow you to fold them up and slide them under the bed, store them in a closet, or lean them up against a wall.
Weight: Rowing machines weigh between 50-100+ pounds depending on the resistance type. Most indoor rowing machines have dual caster wheels, which makes moving them around easy when needed.
Noise Level: All rowing machines are fairly quiet, some are more noisier than others depending on the resistance type. Hydraulic piston and magnetic rowers are the quietest, followed by water and air resistance rowers.
Note: Each rowing machine resistance type has its own ‘pros and cons’. More information on resistance types is provided below or in the full rowing machine reviews.
Rowing machines vary from $100 – $2,000+. The old adage ‘you get what you pay for’ applies to rowing machines like it does to every product and service out there.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t get a quality rowing machine in the lower-end of the price range. What’s most important is you find a rowing machine with everything that you need.
Every rower has its ‘pros and cons’ and I go over each in my detailed rowing machine reviews.
For buyers on a budget check out my article: Best Rowing Machine Under $500
You can also visit my ‘rowing machine reviews by price’ section in the top navigation bar.
There are four resistance types: air, hydraulic piston, magnetic, and water. Most rowing machines use one of the resistance types to provide resistance for the rower (a few rowing machines have two).
Here’s a brief overview of each resistance type:
Hydraulic Piston Resistance:
These rowing machines get their resistance from… you guessed it, hydraulic pistons! Rowing machines have either one or two pistons, depending on the machine.
The resistance on hydraulic piston rowers is usually adjustable and the adjusting is usually done on the actual piston(s). Hydraulic rowers are quiet, compact, and are at the lower-end of the price range.
These rowing machines use paddles suspended in a tank of water for resistance.
Like air resistance rowing machines, resistance on a water rower is variable. The amount of resistance a rower will feel is dependent on their rowing intensity.
Water rowers provide the most realistic rowing motion and on-the-water rowing experience you can get outside of the water. It’s fairly quiet, the faint sound of the water splashing in the water tank adds to the overall realistic rowing experience.
Water resistance rowing machines are at the higher-end of the price range.
These rowing machines use a magnetic brake system to create resistance, which produces no friction and is virtually silent.
Most magnetic rowers have adjustable resistance and requires little-to-no maintenance to keep it running smoothly.
Magnetic resistance rowing machines are at the mid-to-high end of the price range.
These rowing machines get their resistance from a spinning flywheel. The resistance on air rowers is ‘variable’ because the amount of resistance a rower experiences is dependent on the rower’s rowing intensity.
If you row with low intensity, you will get low resistance. If you row with a lot of intensity, you will get a lot of resistance.
This is the most popular resistance type out of all four (if you haven’t been to your local gym lately take a look at the rowing machines – I’m sure it’s an air resistance rower) and it happens to also be the noisiest because of the spinning flywheel.
Air resistance rowing machines are at the mid-to-high end of the price range.
Read more in-depth information about rowing machine resistance types here:
You can also visit my ‘rowing machine reviews by resistance type’ section in the top navigation bar.
There are a handful of rowing machine manufacturers out there. Listed below are a few of the most popular rowing machine brands in the industry today:
Started in 1976 as a company that provided just rowing oars. In 1981, they developed the Concept2 Model A indoor rowing machine that became the best-selling rowing machine in the world.
Today, they’re an international company with over 50 employees with a product line that includes SkiERG, oars, and rowing machines. Their philosophy is “rowing is a lifelong activity, accessible to all.”
Concept2 is one of the most popular and respected rowing machine brands in the world today. They’re the preferred rower of choice for off-season rowing professionals, but are also popular with people interested in a solid full-body workout.
If you visited a health club within the past few decades, chances are the rowing machines provided by the club are Concept2 rowers. Concept2 rowing machine are air-resistance rowers.
Started in 1988 in Rhode Island, United States, and now has international offices in London and Australia and employs over 70 employees worldwide.
WaterRower crafts all of their wooden rowing machines from “Appalachian hardwoods sourced ONLY from replenishable forests.” All of their rowing machines are handcrafted in their Warren facility in Rhode Island.
WaterRower is a trusted brand worldwide and they produce nothing but high quality rowers. They arguably manufacture the world’s most popular water resistance rowing machine that provides the look and feel of rowing in the outdoors on water. WaterRower rowing machines are water resistance rowing machines.
Stamina Products, Inc.:
Was founded in 1987 and their focus is to “supply quality and value to the fitness and leisure markets.” They were the first company to bring Pilates reformers to the mass market for home use.
In addition to the Stamina brand, they have released other products under brands such as Body by Jake, Suzanne Somers, and Tony Little.
Stamina produces a myriad of home fitness products such as exercise bikes, ellipticals, dumbbells, inversion systems, and rowing machines.
Stamina Products, Inc. is a popular brand that focuses on quality and value. This is reflected in their rowing machines as they are quality machines priced at the lower-end of the price range for rowers. Stamina provides rowing machines in the air, hydraulic-piston, and magnetic rowing space.
You can also visit my ‘rowing machine reviews by brand’ section in the top navigation bar.
How I Create The Best Rowing Machine Reviews
Before I buy anything, especially a high-ticket item like a rowing machine, I want to do as much research as possible before I make my final purchase.
If it’s been a while since you last rowed on a rowing machine or you never rowed on one before, the product information on a retailer’s website just doesn’t provide you with enough information about a rower.
Retailer websites don’t offer answers to questions such as the seat comfort level, the level of noise, whether or not the rower is ideal for beginners, etc., etc..
To make sure all of your questions get answered, I spend days researching each rowing machine.
I read the instruction manual, visit the manufacturer’s website, read all online product reviews, examine feedback in discussion forums, watch videos, and demo the product when it’s available.
Afterwards, all of the information is compiled in an unbiased rowing machine review.
Each review has a standard format. For example, if you’re interested in knowing more about a rowing machine’s performance monitor on two different machines, you can find that section in the same spot on each review under ‘monitor/ control panel’.
The standard format on all reviews makes it simple to read about each detailed area of a rowing machine and compare different makes/ models.
If you have any questions, please contact me at Edwin@rowingmachineking.com and I will reply as soon as I can.
I understand how difficult finding a rowing machine is so I’ll do whatever I can to make the process as pain-free as possible!
Good luck in your search and happy rowing!