Home gyms have exploded in popularity and you can’t have a good home gym without a killer piece of cardio equipment. And at the top of the list for home cardio equipment is a rowing machine. It gives you a full-body workout, it’s ideal for high-intensity training, and they burn fat at a rate like no other piece of cardio equipment. That being said, there are tons of rowers to choose from and they range in price. So how do you choose the best rowing machine?
Below we cover all of the top rowing machines including the category their best in (i.e. magnetic, budget, premium, for small spaces, etc.) and review each one for you.
Let’s jump in…
- Best overall: Concept2 Model D
- Best For Budget & Small Spaces: Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050
- Best Magnetic Rowing Machine: Sunny Health & Fitness
- Best Water Rower: WaterRower
- Best folding Compact Rowing Machine: Stamina ATS Air Rower
- Best For Beginners: Fitness Reality 1000
- Best High-End Rower With Monitor: Nordic Track RW900
The Best Overall Home Rowing Machine
The Concept2 is considered to be the gold standard rower. It’s used for all official times recorded in CrossFit competitions and it’s extremely durable with a 500 lb weight capacity.
One thing that separates the Concept2 from the rest of the pack is that it’s lightweight and breaks down into two pieces so it’s easy to store out of the way.
Additionally, it has a PM5 monitor which is hands down the best monitor in the industry. It doesn’t just track stats and display data. It syncs with your phone, you can plug a USB into it and download your stats, and you can even upload your data directly to their online platform so you can check your scores vs other Concept2 rowers around the world.
Check out our full review of the Concept2 here
Best For Budgets & Small Spaces
Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050
The Body Trac Glider 1050 is a compact, budget friendly hydraulic rower. It’s smaller than most other rowers you’ve used which is why it’s ideal for apartments and small spaces.
Measuring just 52” long, it’s not a good fit for people over about 6’ but if you’re under that height, you’re good to go.
It also has 12 different resistance levels that can be adjusted while you’re rowing so you can change intensity without getting off of the rower.
The hydraulic resistance does a good job of mimicking the feeling of rowing on the water. And it has a small screen that displays your important stats like time, number of strokes, calories burned, and total count.
Read the full Stamina Body Trac Glider 1050 review here