The best rowing machine should deliver a killer full-body workout whilst also improving your cardio.
For many, they're the number one pick, even after comparing to treadmills, and trust us, when you get the form right, it's one serious workout.
If this sounds like the machine for you, then you're in the right place. We've compiled a list of our top picks, based on specs, price, and reviews, to kick start your search in the best way possible.
So, if you're searching for something relatively inexpensive, like this Dripex Magnetic Rowing Machine, or you're after something packed with technology, like this NordicTrack RW 900, then we've got you covered right here.
Best Rowing Machine
- Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine
- Dripex Magnetic Rowing Machine
- Lanos Hydraulic Rowing Machine
- NordicTrack RW 900 Rower
- XTERRA Fitness ERG600W
Best Rowing Machine - Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine
Brand: Sunny Health & Fitness | Maximum Weight: 250lbs | Material: Alloy Steel | Resistance Mechanism: Magnetic
This magnetic rowing machine has a lot to offer for both beginners and seasoned professionals including 8 levels of magnetic resistance which should keep your workouts challenging throughout your fitness journey.
It also comes with an extra-long slide rail and non-slip foot pedals with the intention of keeping you comfortable and secure regardless of your size.
The large LCD display shows everything from time to calories burnt - a fantastic feature that lets you track the progress that matters.
Best Rowing Machine on a Budget - Dripex Magnetic Rowing Machine
Brand: Dripex | Maximum Weight: 265lbs | Material: Aluminium | Resistance Mechanism: Magnetic
The Dripex Rowing Machine is another magnetic machine designed to be ergonomic yet sophisticated to fit into any environment it's placed in.
Dripex boasts 15 magnetic resistance levels with the aim of keeping your workouts challenging as you progress and become a more experienced rower.
The ergo also comes with an LCD screen and a super silent aluminum sliding frame according to Dripex which can be beneficial if you use your rowing machine at home and want to avoid disturbing people around you.
This cardio-focused machine is definitely one to consider if you're looking for one of the best rowing machines under 500 pounds or dollars.
Best Hydraulic Rowing Machine - LANOS Hydraulic Rowing Machine
Brand: LANOS | Maximum Weight: 250lbs | Material: Alloy Steel | Resistance Mechanism: Hydraulic
This uniquely designed ergo intends to provide you with a full-body, low-impact yet powerful workout.
Unlike the previous magnetic machines, the Lanos Rowing Machine comes with a manually adjustable hydraulic resistance system to increase the difficulty of your workouts when needed.
It differentiates itself from other egos by having two arm bars instead of one handle to pull. The key advantage of this is that it provides a slightly different range of motion, meaning you'll likely find it quite comfortable (and be able to pull with more force).
It is also made from steel, much like some of the best barbells, meaning it should be super durable, plus you won't miss out on that all-important LCD screen too.
Best Smart Rowing Machine - NordicTrack RW 900 Rower
Brand: NordicTrack | Maximum Weight: 250lbs | Material: Other | Resistance Mechanism: Water, Magnetic
We featured NordicTrack before in our best cross trainers list and, like its elliptical, this rowing machine is similar in the sense that it is one of the most innovative and smart machines available right now.
When purchasing this machine, you get a 30-Day iFIT Family Membership which includes live and on-demand workouts and studio classes to push you to achieve your fitness goals.
It also comes with a 22” HD interactive touchscreen display to stream iFIT workouts too, or to simply watch your favorite TV shows on your top headphones as you train.
NordicTrack boasts 26 levels of digital resistance which your iFIT Trainer will auto-adjust to optimise your workout and to realistically simulate famous bodies of water.
Best Water-Driven Rowing Machine - XTERRA Fitness ERG600W
Brand: XTERRA Fitness | Maximum Weight: 300lbs | Material: Plastic | Resistance Mechanism: Water
The ERG600W has been designed using water as resistance and impellers to actively move through the water tank with the intent of recreating the peaceful sounds of actually rowing on the water.
In addition to this unique design, this ergo features an adjustable 5.5" LCD console for workout tracking and a large contoured seat aimed to maximise comfort and performance.
XTERRA Fitness states the ERG600W has six resistance levels which are determined by the amount of water inside the tank which adds to the uniqueness of this rowing machine.
This ergo is also lighter than most thanks to the bulk of the machine being made out of plastic which can be beneficial if you plan on moving the ERG600W around.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rowing Machines
Rowing machines often come with a lot of questions, but we're here to clear up a few common queries to help you make your purchase.
What Is An Ergo?
Rowing machines are sometimes referred to as ergometers, or ergos, as they measure the amount of work performed by the rower.
Are Rowing Machines Worth It?
While you may be comparing exercise bikes to ellipticals, rowing machines can't be overlooked as they offer a tonne of fitness benefits and are not necessarily that expensive to buy.
One of the reasons people love using indoor rowers is that they hit a number of different muscles during the row movement which ultimately helps build these muscles, all whilst improving your cardiovascular fitness.
So, depending on your fitness goals, rowing machines are a great form of exercise for both beginners and more advanced individuals looking to add rowing into their workout routines.
Which Resistance Mechanism Should I Choose?
This all depends on preference as some people enjoy water resistance as they like the sound they make, while others enjoy the often quieter magnetic resistance machines
What you need to pay attention to is the number of resistance levels and whether you think the machine in question will be challenging enough for you.
Typically, magnetic resistance machines offer more levels so you have more room to increase the difficulty of your workouts.
Are Rowing Machines Easy To Assemble?
Again, this can vary from ergo to ergo.
Some may be more challenging than others, but they should all come with clear instructions to guide you through the assembly process.
The beauty of a rowing machine once you do assemble them is they are usually ready to be used for years to come thereafter and normally don't need a huge amount of maintenance.
Read More: Best Ellipticals Available Right Now