The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 is considered by many to be a “great value”.
While it may not have “top of the line” features, it still has great resistance, good build quality, and a super quiet rowing stroke.
In a market flooded with new rowing machine models everyday, this is exactly what many consumers want!
Many consumers praised how they love using it while watching TV and enjoy the low-impact exercise it provides.
You get all the great features mentioned above, at an extremely affordable price!
If you’re looking for a low cost magnetic rowing machine, the SF-RW5634 may be the model for you! However, there are a few features, like total capacity, that may inhibit your ability to purchase and use.
Please read my full Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 review below for all the pros and cons!
Table of Contents
(click a title to jump ahead!)
1. Resistance Type
2. Monitor/Control Panel
3. Build Quality
9. Pros and Cons
10. Consumer Reviews
13. Overall Review
The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 is a magnetic resistance rowing machine.
This means it uses a magnet against a metal flywheel to control the resistance strength.
To adjust the resistance, you can twist a knob to a higher or lower resistance level. This moves a magnet closer or farther from a metal flywheel and increases or decreases the resistance.
We call this “adjustable” resistance because you must twist a knob to increase or decrease the resistance. No matter how fast or slow you row, the resistance will be the same until you twist the knob.
This is unlike air or water rowers, where resistance changes based off the speed you row. The faster your row, the harder the resistance. We call this “variable” resistance.
You can learn more about the differences between “variable” and “adjustable” resistance by reading my article here.
I’ll also include a video below of how magnetic resistance operates visually.
The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 comes equipped with 8 levels of adjustable magnetic resistance, making it great for users of various skill levels.
As mentioned before, simply twist the knob on the center console to your desired resistance level and start rowing.
The adjustment knob is easy to turn and easy to reach, which is nice when your feet are strapped in and you’re ready to row!
Most users commented the resistance was strong enough for your average person and most stayed around a level 4 or 5 out of 8 total resistance levels . So unless your a hardcore fitness enthusiast, you will be fine!
A major benefit of magnetic rowers is they are very quiet, so they are perfect for apartments, people with sleeping children, or for watching TV!
Many users commented how the rowing stroke felt smooth, strong, and super quiet!
There is also a slightly inclined seat rail, which makes users have to push themselves up (adding a little resistance). It also adds a smoother return and allows for “negative” resistance, which also exercises your legs.
Overall, the resistance on the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 Magnetic Rower is excellent and there were very few complaints.
Almost every user felt the resistance was smooth, strong, and quiet. At this price point, you really can’t get much better!
The SF-RW5634 comes fully equipped with an LCD digital display. While it isn’t the most advanced, it can still record:
- Stroke Count (total strokes for workout)
- Strokes per Minute
As you can see below, the monitor is fairly basic, but that is pretty much expected in this price range.
Simply start rowing to turn the monitor on or press the button. The monitor will automatically turn off after 4 minutes of inactivity.
The monitor also has a “scan” mode, which will scan through the various data points as you row.
The downsides to the monitor include lack of advanced features, a limited amount of data points, and the size of the digital display is a bit small.
Some users wished the monitor included a distance feature. However, in my experience, monitors in the low price range are not very accurate and the numbers are only used as an estimate or to compare workouts.
Data like “calories burned” should be used to compare between workouts and not used in dietary calculations.
While the monitor is nothing to rave about, in this price range I don’t think you can expect much more.
There were not many comments on the build quality of the SF-RW5634, which is usually a good thing!
Build quality issues mostly come up as a complaint, so no news is usually good news here.
Many users did comment the rowing stroke felt smooth and strong. They didn’t notice any wobbling or squeaking noises coming from the rowing machine while in use and the steel frame felt strong and sturdy.
The footrests, seat, seat rollers, ball bearings, and rowing handle are all made of quality material and there were no signs of malfunctioning parts.
Extra-strength velcro straps hold your feet securely in place, so you feel secure while rowing.
Sunny Health & Fitness also added a durable rowing strap to this model to reduce the noise that is sometimes created by a rowing chain. The strap is strong enough to be used during intense workouts and showed no signs of wearing or fraying.
Below is a video of the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 Magnetic Rowing Machine in action.
Comfort is a key component when it comes to purchasing a rowing machine. You want to make sure there aren’t any recurring issues such as a bad handle or uncomfortable footrests.
The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 comes with a soft padded seat and non-slip grip handlebar, the two major points of contact while rowing.
Users felt the seat was comfortable enough for long rowing sessions and the handlebar didn’t give them blisters.
The rowing machine also comes with large, anti-slip footrests with a “cup” at the bottom to prevent your feet from slipping out. As mentioned before, the velcro straps prevent your feet from slipping out or moving around.
The footrests also pivot, to provide additional comfort and a larger range of motion while rowing.
Overall, the rowing motion on the SF-RW5634 is smooth, quiet, and comfortable!
Storing the rower is super easy and the footprint is fairly small, both while in-use and in storage mode!
First, users can easily lift the back of the rower and push the unit around their home on the built-in front caster wheels.
Once the rowing machine is in place for storage, you can fold the seat rail up.
To fold, you must take out the two pins from the main frame. Then insert one near the seat to secure it from sliding. Then fold the rail up and reinsert the other pin to lock the rail in the upright position.
Folding the seat rail takes about 15 seconds and allows you to store the rower nicely in the corner of the room!
Some users mentioned having difficulty removing the pins from the seat rail. One trick is to lift the seat rail up slightly to “open” up the hole and allow the pin to slide out easily.
Most users had no difficulty storing this model and felt the operation was smooth and easy.
Most low cost rowing machines are more compact than the higher-end models. This usually means a lower weight and height capacity.
Luckily, the SF-RW5634 still has a fairly decent capacity that can accommodate most users.
The seat rail length is 47.6″, which according to Sunny Health & Fitness, can accommodate users up to 6’4″ in height.
The manufacturer recommended weight capacity is set at 220 lbs.
While the weight capacity isn’t the highest, I’m assuming most people over 6’4″ will weigh over 220 lbs. If you are looking for a high weight capacity rowing machine, check out this article I wrote.
Any users under the maximum capacity limits will be fine using this model. There are no issues for shorter users or for children.
- Assembled Dimensions:
- 74.5″ x 25.0″ x 24.0″ (L x W x H)
- Folded Dimensions:
- 41.4″ x 25.0″ x 48.75″ (L x W x H)
- Product Weight:
- 45.5 lbs
- Shipping Dimensions:
- 45.0″ x 10.0″ x 28.0″ ( L x W x H)
- Shipping Weight:
- 57.4 lbs
Assembly of the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 Magnetic Rowing Machine is very easy and it was surprisingly highly praised by new users.
People mentioned it took about 20-30 minutes to assemble, depending on how fast you move and how handy you are.
The major point of praise was there are only 4 steps and all the screws come in bags that are labeled with what step they are used in.
This makes it super easy to find parts and put together!
The only discrepancy I saw was that on Amazon it says the monitor takes 2AA batteries but the manual says it require 1 AAA. Either way the battery comes with the unit, so you won’t have worry about it.
Pros and Cons
- 8 levels of adjustable resistance
- Smooth, quiet rowing stroke
- Compact, easy fold design
- No recurring quality issues
- Easy assembly
- Great price!
- Monitor lacks advanced data points
- Weight capacity is 220 lbs.
- Short warranty period
The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 Magnetic Rowing Machine reviews have been overall positive. There are a few negative complaints here and there about the model being delivered broken, the storage function not working, or users feeling the resistance is not adequate. These reasons are not a recurring issue and are more “one-off” type complaints.
Most consumers felt the SF-RW5634 had a strong, smooth rowing stroke that was excellent for using while watching TV. They also felt for the price they were paying, they were getting a great deal! One of the main positive reviews came from how easy the model was to assemble.
Check out more Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 Reviews here.
Average Rating: 4.3
- Frame: 3-Years
- Parts: 90-Days
Sunny Health & Fitness does have a good customer service team but like any big company dealing with a lot of questions and returns, you must have your information organized. Don’t throw away important items like receipts, manuals, or serial numbers.
One thing I did not like when researching the SF-RW5634 warranty was that Sunny Health & Fitness has it labeled as “3 Year Manufacturer’s Warranty” on their website. While technically this is true for the frame, the parts are only 90-days, so it can be a bit misleading.
Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 Price
When buying a rowing machine, price is one of the main deciding factor for consumers. Most want the “best bang for their buck” but this can be difficult to decipher.
For magnetic rowing machines, Sunny Health & Fitness usually has the best budget options. The SF-RW5634 is at the top of this list and is a main reason people choose this model. It sells for a very low price, has good resistance, and good build quality.
Sunny Health & Fitness sells mostly through the online retail giants and usually for the same price. Amazon tends to have low prices, a great return policy, easy checkout, and free shipping on qualified orders.
Check current pricing discounts:
Sunny Health SF-RW5634 vs. SF-RW5515
I get asked a lot, “what is the difference between the SF-RW5634 and SF-RW5515. The answer is not very much!
Sunny Health & Fitness has been pumping out a ton of new models over the last 2 years and I’m not sure why they release so many! They already had the bestselling budget magnetic rower, with the SF-RW5515, and then decided to release the SF-RW5634.
I guess they want enough models where every person can find something as close to their preference as possible.
Below is a picture or both models and the main differences between them:
- Both have the same monitor functions
- SF-RW5515: 250 lbs.
- SF-RW5634: 220 lbs.
- Both have 8 levels
Seat Rail Length:
While it doesn’t look it in the photos above, the SF-RW5515 actually has a longer seat rail than the SF-RW5634.
- SF-RW5515: 54.0″
- SF-RW5634: 47.6″
- Both have the same Sunny Manufacturer Warranty
There are some obvious other differences like the style and look of the models. The seats are also slightly different but for the most part they are the same.
You can check out my Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 review by just clicking here and comparing each individual section.
Overall, the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 is a great low cost magnetic rowing machine. It hasn’t been on the market long and it has already become a top seller.
Consumers love the low price point and quality of the product.
If you are curious about other options available, there are a few other great models with slightly different features that you may like better.
As mentioned above, there is also the Sunny Health SF-RW5515, which is currently the bestselling budget magnetic rowing machine. You can also check out the Stamina 1110 Rower, which is a decent budget model. check out my review here.
If you don’t need a magnetic rower, then I would consider an air resistance option. These have ‘variable’ resistance, where the faster you row, the more resistance you feel. Air is the chosen resistance type by olympic athletes.
The bestselling budget air rower is the Stamina 1399 Air Rower. You can read my full review here.
I hope you enjoyed my Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5634 review! Please leave any questions in the comment section below!