- 1 What is a Rowing Machine?
- 2 Top 10 Best Rowing Machine Reviews
- 2.1 1. Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine
- 2.2 2. WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine with S4 Monitor
- 2.3 3. Stamina Air Rower
- 2.4 4. Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower
- 2.5 5. Stamina 1215 Orbital Rowing Machine
- 2.6 6. Kettler Favorit Rowing Machine
- 2.7 7. ProRower H2O RX-950 Home Series Rowing Machine
- 2.8 8. Xterra ERG400 Rower
- 2.9 9. WaterRower Club Rowing Machine
- 2.10 10. Stamina InMotion Rower
- 3 Rowing Machine Features That You Should Know
- 4 Rowing Machine Terms You Should Know
- 5 What are the benefits of rowing machines?
- 6 Top Rowing Machine Brands
- 7 Common Mistakes You Shouldn’t Do With Your Rowing Machine
- 8 Conclusion
What is a Rowing Machine?
Rowing machines are training and fitness equipments, used mainly by those who participate in the rowing sport to train their muscles, physical fitness, endurance and mental adaptability to the sport. A rowing machine basically consist of a sliding seat or a sliding back rest, two retractable handles, foot rests, and stands for the machine. Rowing machines provide are an awesome fitness equipments and they increase fitness by building muscles in a safe and low-impact way, while also burning off calories.
There have been many evolutions, reforms and redesigns to indoor rowing machines, and they are now highly-refined and sleek exercise equipment. The presence of a rower in your home, and you taking a look at it daily, might just be the only motivation you need to lose weight and get your muscles shaping up in a challenging but comfortable way, as you might not even have to visit the gym.
Top 10 Best Rowing Machine Reviews
There are various types and kinds of Rowing Machines but it is only logical you go for one that strikes a fine balance between price and function. The best Rowing Machines aren’t necessarily the costliest, as you’ll soon find out.
1. Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine
Our Rating: (4.9 / 5)
This is probably the most sold fitness rowing machine in the market. You’ll find it in many gyms and homes. It uses the air resistance technique and it’s built to pass functional and durability tests. It is easily detached into two parts for easy storage and it has one of the most interactive monitor displays you would find on rowing machines.
2. WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine with S4 Monitor
Our Rating: (4.7 / 5)
WaterRower makes unique-looking and functional products that tend to subdue competition and this one follows suit. It uses the water resistance technique to give you that life-like feel. It is built to last a lifetime. For storage, it can be easily raised against a wall; and a visitor would think it’s a piece of interior decoration.
3. Stamina Air Rower
The Stamina Air rower has a sturdy build that gives you confidence and it is built to work all your body muscle groups including your arms, back, thighs, legs, abs, and so on simultaneously. It is foldable and requires minimal storage space. Compare it to the Stamina 35-1405 ATS Air Rower.
4. Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower
Our Rating: (3.9 / 5)
Magnetic resistance rowers are one of a kind and the Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower is in a class of its own. It is very affordable for a rower with its features and it uses an adjustable magnetic resistance technique to work your whole muscle groups.
5. Stamina 1215 Orbital Rowing Machine
Our Rating: (4.1 / 5)
The Stamina 1215 Orbital Rowing machine is worth more than $245, according to those who own it. It has a free arms motion movement, delivering more low-impact workout with its hydraulic resistance technique. It is easily stored and doesn’t need too much space for use.
6. Kettler Favorit Rowing Machine
Our Rating: (3.5 / 5)
This German product has a rugged sturdy build that makes it last longer than other fitness rowing machines in its price range. It uses its hydraulic resistance technique to ensure you get the best from your workout session. It also measures your heart rate electronically with its infrared earlobe clip sensor.
The ProRower H20 RX-750 uses its water resistance technique to deliver adequate fitness sessions, working out your leg, arms, chest, abs, and other muscle groups. It also has one of the most interactive display monitors in the market. Compare to the ProRower H20 RX-950
7. ProRower H2O RX-950 Home Series Rowing Machine
Our Rating: (3.8 / 5)
The ProRower H20 RX-950 uses its water resistance technique to deliver adequate fitness sessions, working out your leg, arms, chest, abs, and other muscle groups. It also has one of the most interactive display monitors in the market.
8. Xterra ERG400 Rower
Our Rating: (2.5 / 5)
Although it’s not quite clear how they came about letters and number (ERG400), Xterra has really done a great job with this one. It is not only very easily moveable and consumes minimal storage space, it is also a very durable product; in fact, it’s a steal for its price tag.
9. WaterRower Club Rowing Machine
Our Rating: (4.7 / 5)
This list would be wrong in the absence of the WaterRower Club rowing machine very attractive looking and answering every single question that could be asked from a fitness rowing machine. It gives you a taste of what real life rowing feels like and it’s a very durable product.
10. Stamina InMotion Rower
Our Rating: (4.2 / 5)
Nothing can be taken away from the Stamina InMotion rower. It is a very portable product, and has one of the smoothest rowing handle bars technique. It uses a very fluent hydraulic resistance technique and it’s very movable. The main selling point of this indoor fitness rowing machine is the price.
Rowing Machine Features That You Should Know
When purchasing a rowing machine, there are definitely some features to consider. These features vary from brand to brand and from equipment to equipment but they are not to be ignored, as they would ultimately come together to be the determining factor on which fitness equipment you strike off your shortlist and which one you finally decide to purchase.
These features include:
Type of Resistance
Even with similar designs, most rowing machines differ in their types of resistance. As there can’t be any form of rowing workout without the resistance feature, it is important to know which kind of resistance the equipment you’re contemplating on purchasing has. The resistance is the basis of your workout and it is can determine how effective your workout is going to be.
The commonly known types of resistance include:
- Air resistance.
- Water resistance.
- Magnetic resistance.
- Hydraulic resistance.It is imperative you know that each type of resistance has its unique rowing feel and their various benefits, so for emphasis sake, resistance is surely a feature to take into consideration.
It doesn’t make any sense to start a workout without feeling any comfort or sync between you and the fitness equipment. The best rowers will have a comfortable seat, non-slip handles / handle bars, fluent retracting chords, firm and good foot pads, and easy adjustability.
Rowing machine get comfortable with good foot pads
Indoor rowing machines are generally noisier than one another but silent machines stand preferred more than their noisier relatives. Although, some users like the rushing noise that gives them the “Oh yes! I’m working and I can hear it” feeling.
Quite rightly, you’ll need a good amount of floor space dedicate in your home to safely and comfortably set up your rowing machine but it wouldn’t be logical to go a hefty long equipment that takes up about one-third the total percentage of your total living room floor area. The length of Rowers varies, and they are usually rather long and narrow.
Max. User Weight
Better than many other fitness equipments, Rowing machines are known to be able to handle much higher weight. The rowing machine is an equipment of low gravity and the less moving parts are to becoming stressed by heavier users.
This can tell on the mobility and the storage space consumed. There are some equipments that can fold up easily with just a few adjustments and it’s always a huge plus to be able to easily store your rower easily. Knowing your equipment’s storage feature is very important. There are rowing machines that can be disassembled and can be stored with easily apart easily to be able to put it in your closet, or in other storage areas.
Row Computer / Monitor
The display monitor is a feature of most rowing machines and it serves as a feedback mechanism for your workout session. Display monitor tells you information like the total time you’ve spent working out, the distance you must have covered if you were actually in a boat on water, the calories you’ve burned, rows count, and so on. Some advanced monitors give you workout options, and display your hear pulse rate. Overall the display monitor is a very essential part of the rowing machine.
Ease of Assembly
Most people face nightmares assembling their machines, especially for the first time of use. Some rowing machines make the process as lenient as possible, while some make sure you have the feeling of dashing through a maze. Make your research to make sure you’re buying a piece of easy-to-assemble fitness rowing equipment and not some rocket science puzzles.
It is only logical that you get a decent warranty that covers both the equipment itself and the parts. Some products put your mind at rest on this, while some doesn’t. Whatever the case is, keep one eye on the product warranty.
There are different rowing machine brands with their various designs and even the same brands with various designs. If for instance you are impressed with the reviews on WaterRower Oxbridge rowing machine in cherry with s4 monitor and you’re impressed but it turned out that you don’t like the design, there might still be other WaterRower products that would fit your design taste. Design is a crucial feature that shouldn’t be ignored.
Finally, it all boils down to the price, and here is the point where you could just easily find yourself torn between product affordability and functionality. The wide variance in price can keep tossing your decision back and forth. Just keep in mind that with fitness rowers, high end machines require a fatter budget and might not require replacement or maintenance for a really long time, while mid-low end devices might squeeze into a small budget but theirs is the maintenance and after a long while, replacement issue. Although that isn’t to say there aren’t fitness rower that sits pretty in the gap between affordability any functionality.
The features mentioned above are very important things to consider when buying a rowing machine. Again, they are what would come together to determine which indoor fitness rowing machine you purchase and which one you cancel out. It is a very wrong move to just jump on the first rowing machine presented to you and part ways with your hard earned money. Research comes before purchase, especially when items like fitness rowing machines are concerned.
Rowing Machine Terms You Should Know
There are quite a number of rowing machine terminologies we think you should know, especially if you’re a newbie to fitness rowing machines. Some of them include:
It is also called the bar, and it is one of the most important features of the rowing machine. It is what you hold on to, to carry out the rowing exercise itself. Most times, it is padded for extra comfort.
This is the central beam for the seat to motion back and forth, according to your row/stroke motion.
Like explained earlier, it simply refers to the type of resistance present in a rowing machine. This single feature separates one rowing machine from another.
Refers to a slight period during the pull, that you don’t really feel any form of resistance. Better rowing machines don’t have dead spots, as you’ll have resistance all the way throughout your strokes.
Simply refers to the models of indoor rowing machines that fold up for easy storage. Not all indoor rowing machines fold up but the ones that do, are better choices as they consume minimal storage spaces.
It is connected to the retraction chain and spins when you pull back on your stroke. This can give you a feeling of an oar moving through water and it is mostly found on air resistance rowers.
It is simply one full rowing action comprising of four phases which are the;
- The Catch
- The Drive
- The Finish, and
- The Recovery.
In a bid to get a feedback on your workout sessions, to know how well you’re improving and how intense your sessions are getting the display which shows you your rows count, distance covered, speed, time and even calories burned is used.
What are the benefits of rowing machines?
Here are 5 benefits you can enjoy from using a rower.
- Rowing machines help in cardiovascular workout, which is a great form of workout that helps the heart and helps the body’s blood levels.
- Rowing helps to strengthen major muscles in the body; it helps, by working around 9 body muscle groups one stroke at a time.
- Rowing is a very good calorie burning workout, and you can trust it for weight loss.
- Rowing is a low-impact exercise that is just a challenging as any higher impact exercise.
- Rowing machines can be the cheaper alternatives to standard gaming equipments, as there are very affordable rowers that would meet your requirements and serve purpose.
Top Rowing Machine Brands
There a lot of brands out there selling some pretty cool indoor fitness rowing machines but some of the most popular brands include:
- Sunny Health and Fitness
Common Mistakes You Shouldn’t Do With Your Rowing Machine
Mistakes, especially at the first time of use, can make you have the wrong impression about fitness rowers. So quickly, here are a few mistakes we implore you to avoid while using a fitness rowing machine to avoid damage to the machine or worse still, injury to yourself.
- Do not use a fitness rowing machine (especially for the first time) without ensuring you have fully and correctly set it up. Be double sure.
- Don’t use the fitness rowing machine without shoes on. It is simply dangerous and unethical.
- Always carry out periodic maintain of the machine. Always keep it clean and oiled (if it needs oiling). Don’t just focus on the monitor, retraction chamber and handgrip bars. Maintain the whole machine.
- Use your legs for motion. Relying too much on your back and arms would only result in cramps or muscle pull.
- Always wear your sports clothes when using the rowing machine. Failure to do so might not only damage the machine (especially the rail beam), you could injure yourself.
Here’s a video guide that shows you common rowing technique errors, you should avoid.
Here’s a follow-up video guide, on how to row correctly, using the correct rowing technique.
Rowing machines are some of the best health and fitness equipments and as agreed by fitness experts, they provide the best total body workouts. Rowing machines works all your muscle groups at one go; something not many fitness equipments can do.
Purchasing a rowing machine that would fit your fitness level, your storage space, your workout area and most importantly, your budget is a really confusing ordeal (yes, we know) but we hope this review has in some way, helped to put most of your questions to rest.
Cheers to your health and fitness, and also to good life!