Best Rowing Machine Reviews Guide 2017

What Is The Best Home Indoor Rowing Machine?

Rowing is one of the best forms of exercise you can do and it has a range of fantastic health and fitness benefits over some other types of exercise.

Like many other fitness equipment, there are plenty of rowing machine options and although having the variety is good for competition, knowing that the makers of these equipment are always on the lookout to innovate and improve their product lines, it can be challenging from a consumer’s perspective.

It’s not easy to choose from a massive selection and the fear of feeling disappointed after making the purchase doesn’t make it any easier.

Hopefully, after reading this write-up, you will be able to start making smart purchasing decision according to your needs and budget. Not just for a rowing machine but for other general purchase you’re bound to make in the near future as well.

Best Home Rowing Machines 2017

Brand/Model
Best Features
Our Rating
1. [Overall #1 Pick] Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine

Effective indoor full-body, low-impact workout;
less noise flywheel design with Performance Monitor 5 for accurate, comparable data;
adjustable monitor arm & separates into 2 pieces for storage;
mobile caster & 227kg capacity
5.0 / 5
2. [BEST VALUE] Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic

One of the top sellers online,reputable brand
250lbs user weight limit
easily transportable
4.7 / 5
3. Concept2 Model E Indoor Rowing Machine

Durable, resistant to air & easy to maintain;
uses Ant + Wireless Technology;
easy to set up with self-powered with USB port & Sunnto, Garmin, Polar heart rate (Bluetooth Smart Belt,) compatible
4.7 / 5
4. WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine

Water rower - great natural finish
stores upright
realistic rowing feel.
4.5 / 5
5. Evolution Series E520 Fluid Rower

Heavy-duty full commercial machine with patented 20-level variable resistance;
unmatched durability, maintenance free & carries 450-lb user weight;
fitted with concealed air-glide seat rollers for safer & cleaner continuous smooth operation
3.7 / 5
6. ProForm 440R Rower

Rower features integrated dual action strength training;
oversized pivoting pedals with adjustable nylon foot straps; comes in space saver design
3.4 / 5

General Buying Guidelines

top rowing machine for home

Learn all you need to know about the item, equipment or thing at question. Find out the types, variation and functionality of it to know what is the best rowing machine

Setting A Budget

There’s always the most expensive and the cheapest of everything. Get the range and set your budget then stick to it. With a well-defined budget, you’re able to sort through a lot of versions or types that doesn’t fall in your budget range.

For example, you can filter for best rowing machine under $500 or best rowing machine under $300.​

​More Ways To Sort And Filter

​Besides filtering with budget, you can also filter by type, variations and functionalities.

Look For Feedback

It’s always good to look for what others are saying about that particular product you intend to buy. However, do know that feedback can be crafted so do look at a few sources when looking at feedback.

There are times where you won’t find any feedback and if that’s the case find someone you know who has it and speak to that person about it or try it out.

Look at every aspect possible and dig out all the potentials that could go wrong. Remember, you’re the buyer and you have the right to take your time and know the inside out.

Types Of Rowing Machines

types of rowing machines

There are four different types of rowing machine.

Hydraulic Rowing Machine

Hydraulic rowers use hydraulic pistons as its resistance mechanism.

These make the best budget rowing machine and most the portable of all the types of rower. If you’re looking for the best compact rowing machine, the make sure it’s a hydraulic fold-able type

Although they might not simulate closely to water rowing action, the adjustable resistance created by the hydraulic beneficial to the user.

Water Rowing Machine

Water rowers use flywheel paddles in a circular tank of water as its resistance mechanism.

Water rowers simulate water rowing action closely. The moving mass of water creates the resistance therefore the faster you get the water to spin around in the tank, the higher the resistance.

They provide the most naturalistic and consistent resistance.

Air Rowing Machine

​Air rowers use flywheel and air as its resistance mechanism.

Air rowers were once known to be the best indoor rowing machine. The faster the flywheel spins, the greater the resistance. They are the noisiest among the 4, so you’ll probably want some good noise canceling headphones to wear while you workout.

Magnetic Rowing Machine

Magnetic rowers use strong magnets and metal plates as its resistance mechanism.

Magnetic rowers are popular for its quietness. It’s the quietest rowing machine of them all which is favorable for environments at home.

Best Rowing Machines 2017

2017s best rowing machine options

The following are not in arranged in any particular order or type.

WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine

One of the more popular brands, if you’re lookig for a realistic workout then a water rower is a great option.

York Rowing Machine Reviews

York is well known in the global fitness equipment industry which they have been in for 75 years. They manufacture several top quality fitness equipment and one group of them being rowing machines.

York Fitness R101 Rowing Machine

This is their most affordable rower in their line. It comes with 12 levels of hydraulic resistance, four workout programs and console feedback along with other useful indicators.​

​York Fitness R700 Platinum Rowing Machine

​Talk about innovation, the r700 platinum rowing machine is built with a combination of 2 resistance mechanism (Air + Magnetic) to achieve a smoother pull. There are 8 resistance levels, along with useful indications.

York Excel 310 Folding Rowing Machine

Excel 310 is a magnetic rower that comes with 16 levels of magnetic resistances, 21 workout programs and other useful indicators as well as feedback.

Concept2 Rowing Machine Reviews

Concept2 started out as a company manufacturing oars for rowing in 1976. In 1981, they created their first line of indoor rowers and quickly became the best sellers. Today, they have 3 different indoor rowers in their product line.

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine

Model D is concept2’s bestselling indoor rowing machine. It is one of the top air rowers that come with its sophisticated PM5 to give you accurate, comparable data for every row, fun programs, and other useful data and metrics.

Concept2 Model E Indoor Rowing Machine

Model E is concept2’s a direct clone of Model D except with a higher seat that makes it easier to get on or off the machine.

Concept 2 Dynamic Indoor Rowing Machine

Model Dynamic offers the closest simulation to water-rowing action compared to model D and model E and has a completely different look and feel.

Infiniti Rowing Machine Reviews

Infiniti fitness equipment is an Australian company who has made its presence known in the domestic as well as commercial fitness equipment realm since 1982. They have 4 indoor rowers in their line till date.

Infiniti R88APM Rower

Ideal for the whole family and the best rowing machine for beginners, the r88apm rower is hybrid air/magnetic rower which is extremely user friendly and comes with the natural resistances of an air rower along with 6 extra levels of magnetic resistance. It has a built in heart rate receiver to measure all the useful data and a unique clutch systems that allows for a smooth rowing action.

Infiniti R99APM Rower

An update to the R88APM rover, the r99apm comes with a non-slip end cap, automatic controlled air/magnetic resistance system, 12 workout programs and other features of the its predecessor.

Infiniti R100APM Rower

Their top of the line domestic rower, the r100apm comes with 15 auto control programs and better heart rate receiver that support 3 heart rate programs and personal data storage for 4 users.

Infiniti R9 Rower

Their latest, the R9 Rower is known to simulate super smooth rowing action along with other goodies of its predecessors.

First Degree Fitness Rowing Machine Reviews

First Degree Fitness is a fairly new company that was founded in 2000. However, they are known as one of the best water rowers and you’ll definitely find them in most of the water rowing machine reviews you come across online. They have 3 indoor water rowers in production currently.

Vortex Series VX-3 Fluid Rower

Without any need for maintenance, the vortex vx-3 is ideal for the commercial environment but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it at home. This water rower comes with 20 levels of patented variable fluid resistance, interactive performance monitor with usb for monitoring all the useful and relevant workout data as well as interactive programming via USB. Its direct drive system provides continuous resistance for a true rowing workout.

Evolution Series E520 Fluid Rower

​The Series E520 has pretty much the same features at the vortex vx-3 but with upgrades to better enhance row experience that matches getting in a boat or heading out on a river.

Horizontal Series Apollo Hybrid AR Pro Fluid Rower

​The Apollo Hybrid AR is made to be the industry’s best on-water rowing emulation with a natural catch and feel. With adjustable resistance at the turn of a dial, you can easily experience a different intensity. The wood finishing makes it very appealing for the eyes.

ProForm Rowing Machine Review

With 20 years as the number 1 selling fitness brand, proform is the most recognized fitness equipment manufacturer in the world today. They only have 1 rower in production.

ProForm 440R Rower

The 440R Rower is a magnetic rower made by one of the biggest brand in the fitness industry. Its resistance mechanism is fairly small but has a reasonably smooth and quiet action. You will also find it in most of the magnetic rowing machine reviews you elsewhere. There’s 8 resistance level to choose from and comes with a good-size LCD screen to display feedback of your work out.

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic

Sunny Health and Fitness is a fantastic and well-known company in the home fitness equipment space. THe RW5515 is a hot seller and our pick for best rowing machine under $500.

More to be covered

There are a lot of rowing machines to be introduced and cover and as time goes by, we’ll be adding more to the list.