XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower Review

XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower ReviewThe XTERRA Fitness ERG600W is one of the lowest cost water rowers on the market!

Users love the smooth, strong resistance it provides with the advanced LCD monitor.

All at a very affordable price!

Xterra Fitness describes the water resistance as “zen-like” and boasts a soothing, meditative rowing stroke that’s great for blasting away fat!

The XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower is one of the fastest selling water rowing machines on the market right now!

Users feel it is a great blend of quality and price, however, it’s not perfect.

Read my full XTERRA ERG600W Water Rower review below for all the pros & cons!

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Table of Contents
(click a title to jump ahead!)

1. Resistance Type
2. Monitor/Control Panel
3. Build Quality
4. Comfort
5. Storage
6. Capacity
7. Dimensions
8. Assembly
9. Pros and Cons
10. Consumer Reviews
11. Warranty
12. Price
13. Overall Review

Resistance Type

The Xterra Erg600W is a water resistance rowing machine.

This means resistance is created by paddles suspended in a tank of water.

As a user pulls the handle and begins the rowing stroke, the paddles begin to spin and are forced to move the water in front of them.

As a user rows faster, the paddles must spin faster, and displace more water. This causes greater resistance.

So the faster a users rows, the more resistance they create!

We call this ‘variable’ resistance because resistance is controlled by how fast or slow a users rows.

I have an article that explains a little more about how ‘variable’ resistance works that you can read here.

Resistance Benefits

Users felt the resistance provided by the ERG600W Water Rower was adequate for all fitness levels!

They mentioned it being smooth, quiet, and strong. Some users even like the sound of the water because it resembled being on a lake and is very soothing.

Xterra Erg600w Water Rower Resistance

One benefit of water rowing machines is the noise level. Water rowers are much quieter than air rowers, so users can row without bothering other people in their house and also watch TV at normal volume levels.

Most users felt the resistance was great and comparable to the resistance found on more expensive rowers, such as the Concept2 and WaterRower models!

One user mentioned, a full water tank on the Xterra Erg600W feels like a damper setting of 9 on a Concept2.

Resistance Levels

The XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower has 6 levels of resistance…kind of.

The water tank (which measures 20.38″ x 7.87″ (51.76cm x 20cm) and holds 12.9 liters of water) has 6 different lines to measure the height of the water.

The higher you fill the tank, the more difficult it feels to row. Technically, it doesn’t change the ‘resistance’ but it does change the feeling of the rowing stroke.

Think of it as rowing with more or less people in a boat. If you fill the tank to Level 1, it will feel like you are rowing a boat by yourself. If you fill the tank to Level 6, it will feel like you are rowing a boat full of people.

Xterra Fitness Erg600w Water Tank

Resistance is created due to the drag of the water moving over the paddles in the tank. The only way to change the resistance is to row faster! This is defined as “The Rule of Cubes.”

“By the laws of hydrodynamics, the resistance/drag varies to the cube of the velocity/speed. The rule of cubes therefore dictates that a doubling of the speed of the boat will require an eight-fold increase in resistance.”

Basically, rowing faster increases the resistance….a lot! I hope I didn’t lose you there.

To get even more technical, according to XTERRA Fitness, the resistance at level 6 (max level) is roughly 275 Newtons.

Resistance Adjustments

There are 2 adjustments to make on the Xterra Water Rowing Machine.

First, you must fill the tank to the appropriate level. A water pump and siphon are included to help add or subtract water from the tank.

This can become a little annoying, so I would suggest finding your optimal level and sticking with it.

The second adjustment is the bungee cord that controls the recoil of the rowing handle. While this doesn’t directly relate to resistance, I figured this was a good section for it.

Erg600W Bungee Adjustment

Basically, there are 3 hooks on the bungee cord which controls the “assisted return” of the handle and mesh belt (see photo above). There are very easy instructions to follow in the manual but I figured it was worth mentioning!

Resistance Overall

Overall, users felt the resistance on the Erg600W Water Rower is excellent! They mentioned the entire rowing stroke being smooth, quiet, and strong.

I found very few complaints and most users felt it was comparable to much higher cost rowers!

Monitor/Control Panel

The Xterra Erg600W comes fully equipped with a large 5.5″ LCD monitor.

The monitor will track the following workout data:

  • Total Time
  • Time/500M
  • Calories
  • Distance
  • Strokes
  • Strokes/Min (SPM)
  • Room Temp
  • Clock
  • Pulse (only with HRM)

As you can see, this monitor can track a ton of data! Plus, it has super easy to read sections with large display numbers (as shown below).

XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower Monitor

The monitor functions with 6 easy to use buttons and the navigation is very easy. A great benefit of this monitor is the 5 programmable workout modes:

  1. Race Against Computer
  2. Time Countdown
  3. Distance Countdown
  4. Strokes Countdown
  5. Calories Countdown

Once you are finished with your workout, simply press the recovery button and see how fast your heart rate can return to a normal BPM (beats per minute).

This is a great gauge for how “in shape” you are but can only be used with a 5.3 KHz chest strap heart rate monitor. One very popular model is the Polar H7 Bluetooth Heart Rate Monitor.

Erg600w Water Rower Monitor

The Erg600w monitor does come with 2AA batteries so you don’t need anything when the rower arrives and it won’t need to be plugged into an outlet.

Overall, users felt this was a very good monitor for this price range and was much better than monitors on similarly priced rowing machines.

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Build Quality

Judging build quality on a mid-range rowing machine can be difficult. The manufacturer is trying to build a “high quality” rowing machine for a low cost. However, because it is not “extremely” low-cost, buyers will usually compare it to much higher priced models and complain about the quality!

Luckily, there weren’t too many complaints about the XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower.

Users felt the rowing motion was strong and sturdy due to the solid steel frame and dual aluminum slide rails.

Xterra Water Rowing Machine Build Quality

The water tank is made from durable polycarbonate plastic and is pressure tested before leaving the assembly line.

This model utilizes a “rowing strap” rather than a chain, but users still felt it was durable and would not fray or break over time. The seat also felt durable and glided smoothly on industrial ball-bearing rollers.

Most users felt the Xterra Erg600w Water Rower was built from high quality materials and had excellent build quality for the price. They didn’t notice any wobbling or creaking noises while rowing.

Quality Issue

The only issue this rowing machine has is the durability and functionality of the footrests.

On some models (seems like older models), the “heel cup” portion of the footrest would break. The reason the “heel cup” would break is due to the users shoe getting caught on the plastic and when a user would raise their heel while rowing, it would catch and crack.

If you look at the photos of the Xterra footrest with a shoe, you can see what I mean

Basically, the “heel cup” would split down the middle and users would have to use duct-tape to fix.

XTERRA ERG600 Quality Issue

Another issue is the “holes” where users adjust the footrest height do not stay in place properly. Basically, you slide the footrest up or down and place a “button” into the “holes”.

It seems like the plastic was slightly bent which made the “buttons” pop out. To fix this issue, you would have to take out the footrests and slightly bend the plastic so they curve the proper way.

It sounds a bit confusing but it is a really easy fix.

I believe XTERRA Fitness has resolved these issues, as there don’t seem to be many recent complaints.

Quality Overall

Overall, users were very happy with the build quality of the XTERRA Fitness ERG600W. They felt it provided a strong, sturdy base which allowed them to row at any pace without moving or creaking noises.

The only issue is the quality of the footplates and this is usually an easy fix or Xterra Fitness customer service will replace them!

Check out the XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower in action below:

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Making sure you buy a rowing machine that has a smooth and comfortable rowing stroke is super important!

Luckily, the Xterra Fitness Erg600W provides a smooth and uniform stroke that is quiet and soothing.

Users felt the multi-bladed impeller provided smooth resistance throughout the entire stroke without any lag. They also felt the noise level was very low and the water sound was quite soothing.

XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower Comfort

There were no issues with the large, contoured seat and the ergonomic handle is contoured and padded for maximum comfort.

The rowing seat rail is also 13.5″ off the floor which makes getting on and off the rowing machine a bit easier.

As mentioned previously, the footrests do have their quality issues but users felt the velcro straps to hold your feet in place were very comfortable and extremely secure.

Users didn’t mentioned any shaking or creaking noises while rowing, which could be due to the adjustable end-caps that can be adjusted to keep the rower stable on uneven surfaces.

Overall, the XTERRA Fitness Erg600w Water Rower has a comfortable rowing stroke that is great for any individual.

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Storing the Erg600W Water Rower may be the easiest thing you can do!

All you have to do is slide the seat to the front of the rail and lift from the rear support. Simply lift the rower upright until in rests on the front storage support.

Xterra Erg600w Storage

When stored, the rower takes up 33.0″ x 22.0″ of floor space.

Moving the Erg600w Rowing Machine is also very easy. Just lift from the rear support until the wheels touch the ground and roll forward.

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The manufacturer suggested weight limit is 300 lbs, which is great for a rowing machine in this price range.

I would be comfortable with anyone near this weight using this rower, as most weight capacities are fairly conservative.

XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower Capacity

XTERRA Fitness commented that the ERG600W is suitable for anyone up to 6’4″ tall, which is also a pretty good height limit.

There were users who were 6’3″ who used this model and felt they had a few inches to spare on the seat rail.

The design over the rower does not pose any limitation to smaller users, so as long as you are shorter than 6’4″ you should be fine to use the Erg600w Water Rower!

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  • Assembled Dimensions (L x W x H):
    • 80.7″ x 22.0″ x 33.0″
  • Stored Dimensions (L x W x H):
    • 33.0″ x 22.0″ x 80.7″
  • Assembled Weight: 82.7 lbs
  • Shipping Weight: 104.7 lbs
  • Shipping Dimensions: 45.0″ x 22.5″ x 20.5″

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I wouldn’t consider the Xterra Fitness Erg600w assembly to be easy, but it certainly isn’t hard.

All of the tools, parts, and batteries come in the package so no need to have anything prepared.

When looking at the assembly manual, there are basically 5 main steps to piecing together the rower.

  1. Connect the rear stabilizer to the seat rail
  2. Connect the front stabilizer to the frame with end-caps
  3. Assembly the seat onto the seat rail and connect the rail to the main frame
  4. Attach the console
  5. Fill the water tank

As I previously mentioned, the water tank needs to be filled with the funnel and siphon pump. You will also have to add a water purification tablet.

The purification tablets help the water from getting mildew. Never use bleach or chlorine.

Most users assembled the rower in 20-40 minutes and were able to do it by themselves. The box does weigh 105 lbs, so you may want someone to help if that seems heavy!

Take your time and it should all go together smoothly!

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Pros and Cons


  • Smooth water resistance
  • 6 levels to adjust water tank
  • Multi-function LCD monitor
  • Solid construction
  • Great price point!
  • Excellent warranty
  • 13.5″ seat height


  • Poor footrest quality & design
  • Long shipping times
  • Adjusting water levels can be tedious

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Consumer Reviews

The XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower reviews have been positive overall. Most users had great things to say about this model and it was hard to find a negative review.

One major flaw that has impacted reviews are the footrests. I believe if the footrests did not break, the reviews would be even higher!

Overall, consumers felt the Xterra Erg600w is a great rowing machine for the price and one of the best water resistant rowers on the market.

Check out more XTERRA Fitness ERG600W reviews here.

Average Rating: 4.7

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I was happily surprised when I saw the warranty on the Xterra Erg600w. I feel it is a great warranty an it’s in-line with the price being paid for the rower.

  • Frame: 5-Years
  • Parts: 2-Years
  • Labor: 90-Days

Consumers also mentioned XTERRA Fitness having great customer service and having no issues replacing parts.

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XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower Price

Now on to price, one of the most important factors! For a while, the lowest cost water rowing machine was somewhere in the middle of $500-$1,000 and this wasn’t even a great model!

Most consumers who wanted a good water rowing machine had to spend close to $1,000 for the lowest cost WaterRower brand rower.

Then Sunny Health & Fitness came out with a good low-cost water resistant rower and now the XTERRA Fitness ERG600W. So it’s good to see some lower cost, high quality water rowers hitting the market!

I’ve compared prices around the web and most retailers list the rower for the exact same price. I think Amazon is a great place to buy rowing machines because they offer competitive pricing, free shipping on qualified orders, and they act as a layer of protection between consumers and manufacturers.

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One thing to note is the shipping time on the Xterra Water Rowing Machine can be very long. If you visit the manufacturer website, the shipping time is shorter, but the cost of the rower goes up.

I’m not sure on the reason for this but it is kind of annoying.

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Overall Review

As you can tell, the Xterra ERG600W is a great option if you are looking for a well priced water resistance rowing machine.

There are not many bad things to say about it and it will surely give you a great workout.

If you want to compare it to another great alternative (maybe the only mid-range water resistant alternative), then check out my Obsidian Surge Water Rowing Machine review.

If you want a higher priced water rower, then a great option is going to be the WaterRower brand rowers. Their lowest cost option is the WaterRower A1. You can check out my full review here.

Of course, I have to mention the #1 bestselling rowing machine. It will cost more but it does have a much better monitor (in my opinion), better build quality, and highly realistic resistance. However, it will be loud. Check out my full Concept2 review here.

I hope you enjoyed my XTERRA Fitness ERG600W Water Rower review! Please leave any questions or comments below.

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