There's a lot to factor in when searching for the best rowing machine under 500 dollars or pounds, especially as it can be difficult figuring out exactly what standard you're getting for your cash.
Fortunately, that's where we come in with our list, based on features, price, and reviews, of some of the standout machines available right now which, if you get the form right, can deliver a serious full-body workout.
Whether you're after something water-driven, like this XTERRA Fitness ERG600W, or you're searching for something foldable, like this Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5606, we've got you covered right here.
Best Rowing Machine Under 500
Best All-Round Rowing Machine Under 500 - JOROTO MR35
The JOROTO MR35 looks to be an extremely versatile and well-rounded bit of kit to upgrade your home gym setup.
It's made from aluminum and comes with 10 levels of adjustable magnetic resistance, designed to fit different workout plans and experience levels, plus it allows for progression.
Moreover, it features a digital monitor so you're able to keep track of your time, count, total count, and calories whilst you exercise, which is also handy for ensuring you're making improvements.
It's also worth noting you get a couple more useful additions like a cup holder, phone holder, and built-in wheels to make the JOROTO MR35 easier to move.
Best Foldable Rowing Machine Under 500 - Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5606
If you're looking to save space to make way for other equipment in your home gym, then this foldable Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5606 machine may be for you.
It comes with dual directional resistance with 4 levels of adjustable tension so you can alter the difficulty of your workouts whenever you need to.
The large LCD display provides information on your time, count, total count, calories burned, count per minute, and scan, so should be a great option for those who like to know their workout stats to keep track of progression.
Ultimately, if you're looking for a foldable bit of kit on a budget, then we feel this Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5606 is well worth thinking about.
Best Rowing Machine Under 500 For Live Workouts - SNODE WR100
The SNODE WR100 looks to be a great rowing machine, with its defining feature being the interactive personal training videos you can access via the free FITLOG app to help keep you motivated whilst exercising.
Within the app, you can also find many tutorials which may be helpful if you're and a beginner, and you can even set training plans to help you keep on top of your fitness regime.
On the performance side, it comes with a water-driven resistance mechanism, designed to simulate the real rowing experience as accurately as possible.
All in all, if you're looking for something to keep you motivated, then this relatively inexpensive SNODE WR100 could be the machine for you.
Best Air-Driven Rowing Machine Under 500 - Stamina ATS Air Rower
As its name suggests, the ATS Air Rower creates its resistance through wind which, Stamina boasts, provides a smoother rowing stroke.
Furthermore, it features a monitor which displays your speed, distance, time, and calories burned, helping you to keep track of how hard you're working during exercise.
It's also worth mentioning you get free access to Müüv, a smart audio coaching app designed to give you training tips and advice if you're new to rowing.
On the whole, a solid option to consider if you're after an air-powered machine.
Best Water-Driven Rowing Machine Under 500 - XTERRA Fitness ERG600W
What we like about the ERG600W is that it is water-driven, using impellers to actively move through the water tank with the intent of recreating the peaceful sounds of real rowing.
Additionally, this machine comes with an adjustable 5.5" LCD console, plus 6 resistance levels which are determined by the amount of water inside the tank and can provide some variation to the intensity of your workouts.
Ultimately, we feel this water-driven machine is a strong contender for consideration, especially given its relatively inexpensive price.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rowing Machines Under 500
Rowing machines can sometimes come with a lot of questions, but we're here to clear up a few common queries to help you make your purchase.
Are Rowing Machines Worth It?
A rowing machine is a great option to have for the winter months for indoor cardio-based training, however, it also makes for a great option all year round as rowing in real life is not as simple as putting on some trainers and stepping outside.
This is one of the reasons why we feel a rowing machine is worth having in your home gym, but we also think it's a great way of working out your whole body whilst also improving your cardio as well.
Can You Lose Weight Using A Rowing Machine?
A rowing machine offers an extremely effective way of burning calories and, therefore, can be used to lose weight if paired with the right diet.
In fact, a study conducted by the University of Roehampton compared running on a treadmill to rowing on a machine and found participants burnt 300 calories whilst rowing.
The results also showed that rowing activated more muscle groups than running, making it an efficient way of improving your cardio whilst also exercising your entire body.
Are Rowing Machines Better Than Treadmills?
We've previously discussed whether treadmills are better than rowing machines and, in said article, we conclude that a rowing machine is a great choice for an all-around full-body workout.
In fact, a 2015 study into rowing machines found that rowing 5 days a week for 6 weeks led to a significant decrease in fat mass and total body fat percentage which, we feel, is a strong indication of the benefits of rowing.
How Long Will Your Rowing Machine Last?
If maintained correctly, a rowing machine can last a significant amount of time, but thankfully they don't require much work to keep them functional.
Firstly, a good habit to get into is wiping down your machine after use as leftover sweat can damage the machine, particularly the metal moving parts.
It's also worth making sure the glider for the seat remains clean and lubricated as any dirt here can cause friction, thus reducing the smoothness of your workout.
Similarly, you should make sure the chain is kept clean and is coiled correctly in order to avoid you damaging the chain and breaking it.
Is A Rowing Machine Good For Building Muscle?
A rowing machine is an extremely versatile bit of kit as it is an effective way of improving your cardio and building muscle because you utilise almost your entire body during the movement.
With that being said, a rowing machine probably won't be an effective way of continually building muscle as, once you start getting more experienced, your room for progression becomes limited because it's not as easy to up the weight compared to weight lifting.
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