When you are very tight on space at home and on a very slim budget, it is difficult to pick one piece of equipment that will suit your fitness needs. Luckily, there is one fitness machine that delivers full body workout and also acts as a great cardio exercise – indoor home rowing machine!
It is very hard picking your first indoor rowing machine to buy due to the large variety and different types of rowers available on the market. I have assembled this list to help guide you to your first indoor rower!
For more detailed reviews visit a specific section on our website that is dedicated to detailed rowing machine reviews.
1. JLL R200 – Best Value Foldable Rower
This rowing machine is our best pick for a beginner. It provides amazing value and comes with a foldable option – simply put this rowing machine in a cupboard to save some space. The rower comes with built-in wheels that allow it to be transported around easily. If you are tight on space, this machine is the perfect choice.
JLL R200 is ridiculously sturdy machine for its price and it can support maximum user weight of 100 kilograms or 15.75 stones. It also comes with a nice LCD tracking monitor that will help you track your workout stats.
The machine was built following ergonomic and comfort standards. It features seamless smooth sliding mechanism that provides excellent rowing simulation during rowing as well as handlebars are padded for extra comfort and to prevent blisters. Keep in mind that this machine is suitable for users up to 100 kg and 6ft3.
This rower is equipped with an advanced belt driving system. It provides rapid engagement during rowing session and is proven to deliver great training results. The rower is equipped with 10 various resistance levels that will suit majority of beginner users. For more advanced users the resistance might be a little bit light, but it is still perfect for cardio workouts.
If you are still looking for a perfect rowing machine for home that will perform well and will last you for long – this is the machine you should consider buying. It has got 4.5 stars out of 5 on amazon with over 300 hundred user reviews. If you are looking for a winner – look no more, as you can buy this brilliant rowing machine with confidence!
JLL R200 Pros & Cons
- Best value rower
- Foldable Design
- Best for beginners
- Easy to assemble on your own
- Lacks resistance for more advanced users
- Slightly basic LCD tracking monitor
2. V-Fit Tornado – Excellent Air Rowing Machine
V-Fit Tornado is sitting on the closer side to the professional rowing machines. It is using air to provide its users with smooth and realistic rowing experience. Downside of using air resistance is that it will make noise during exercise. Some users might be put off by it.
Air rowers are using air to provide resistance, and the more you row and faster you row – the more resistance you will get from machine. It is an excellent solution for someone who doesn’t want to over complicate their lives yet want to get an efficient workout machine for home. Also it provides perfect cardio exercise as well as it is amazing for building muscles and strength.
It comes with an amazing professional-like tracking monitor that lets you track important workout vital stats when working out such as speed, distance and calories burnt. With this tracking monitor you will always be able to control your workout and keep track of your fitness progress.
The seat was designed to suit most of the users and pivoting footplates help a lot to stay comfortable during long workout sessions. The glide of a seat along the rails is very smooth and seamless. Keep in mind the maximum user weight for this machine is 115kg.
What also makes it perfect for beginners and home use is that it can fold in half. It is also light enough for it to be transported around the house without any help. Also it is a perfect machine for someone who is planning to use it a lot for long time – user reviews have proven that this machine can sustain a lot of use and is very durable.
V-Fit Tornado Air Pros & Cons
- Air resistance is proportionate to your power
- Professional design, being used in gyms
- Foldable design
- Easy to transport around
- Costs just a fraction of a professional rower
- Supports heavy users
- Air rowers make noise
- Can be a bit tricky to assemble for a beginner
3. Viavito Sumi – Stylish Foldable Rowing Machine
First thing you notice about this indoor rowing machine is it’s design and colour. Viavito Sumi combines black and red colours together and looks very classy and modern. It is one of the most stylish rowing machines on the market.
One of the main selling points for this rower is it’s resistance system. This rower uses magnets to provide user with resistance. It has got a whopping 10 different resistance level. You can easily switch between resistance levels without interrupting your workout.
It also comes with a progressive system of resistances that will allow you to start from very low resistance and build up strength and improve your fitness level in the comfort of your home! And as a bonus – magnetic rowing machines are very quiet and smooth in operation, yet still as effective as air rowers or water rowers. With this machine you can enjoy distraction free exercising.
If you are taller than 6 feet- this is the machine you should look into buying. It can support users who are taller than 6 feet as well as users who weight up to 120 kilograms. This machine also has large pedals and a wide grip for great comfort during rowing sessions.
What makes it truly a home rowing machine is that it can fold in half. Put it away in a storage or under the bed to save space. This machine has been made from durable steel and has proven to last for years under heavy usage.
Viavito Sumi Pros & Cons
- Suitable for tall users
- Smooth and quiet rowing stroke
- Great value
- Folds in half
- Ergonomic design
- LCD monitor need batteries
- LCD monitor could have been more advanced
4. Marcy Azure RE1016 – Budget Rower For Beginners
Marcy Azure RE1016 is an amazingly stylish beginner rowing machine. It is made from solid aluminium rails with some thick steel elements. Rowing on this machine feels very smooth and comfortable. This is the best budget rowing machine for beginners who are looking to start their journey to great health and fitness! Also this machine has been proven to be very sturdy and comes with a 2 year manufacturer warranty.
This rowing machine was designed specifically for beginners to provide maximum comfort – the seat is designed to fit most of users and provide comfort during rowing. Also the handles are padded in order to protect your hands from getting blisters and marks after long rowing workout session.
In order to keep you entertained during rowing this machine has got a special phone or tablet holder. There isn’t a better combination than watching great series on Netflix and improving your health all at the same time.
During your workout you can switch between 8 different levels of resistance. Just pick a suitable level for yourself and start rowing straight away. The resistance comes from magnets, so during stroke this machine is as silent as an indoor rowing machine can get! Once you get more fit you can increase the level and make it more challenging for you. Simply twist the knob that is located under the LCD display, there is no need to stop your workout. Keep in mind that due to this rower being a beginner machine, it doesn’t have pre-programmed workouts in the tracking monitor.
Please note that this machine can accommodate users up to 110 kg and 6 ft tall. This is perfect machine for teenagers or for female users, although anyone can use this machine to the full. If you are a professional rower and looking for a great challenge please look into other rowers that I discuss in this list.
Marcy Azure RE1016 Pros & Cons
- Phone/Tablet Holder
- Smooth rowing
- Lightweight machine
- Folds in half
- Not suitable for tall users
- No programs in tracking monitor
5. Marcy RM413 – Foldable Robust Rowing Machine
Marcy RM413 rowing machine is one of the best one in the market of budget rowers. It features magnetic resistance, making strokes very smooth and real-like as well as being very silent. This rower strikes a perfect balance between cost, style and effectiveness.
For your convenience there is an LCD tracking monitor that will show you all the important stats during your workout such as distance rowed, strokes per minute, speed, time elapse and strokes count. It is very easy to keep track of your progress and fitness level getting better with this tracker.
This machine is made from high quality materials and one of its main features is an ability to fold in half. You can put this machine to storage or under your bed and save space with ease without any help from a third party. To do so, simply use a special quick release pin and position the machine upright. Also, this machine is ridiculously easy to assemble and start using straightaway after it gets delivered. Usually it takes around an hour for an inexperienced user to assemble this machine.
In general, machine delivers amazing rowing experience and according to Amazon user reviews it truly deserves to be 4 star out of 5 machine. The main reason why it is not 5 stars – its resistance levels. There are 8 levels from which you can choose the suitable one for you, but for more athletic and fit users this might not prove to be a good fitness challenge. Thanks to padded ergonomically designed seat and comfortable foot straps – you can use this machine for long rowing sessions and still be comfortable to carry on for longer.
RM413 has been made from durable steel and aluminium materials. It comes with whopping 2 years manufacturer warranty! This is an amazing pick for everyone who is looking for durable yet effective rowing machine for their home gym.
Marcy RM413 Pros & Cons
- Easy to assemble
- Quiet in operation
- Adjustable resistance
- Foldable for ease of storing
- Not suitable for advanced rowers
6. BH Fitness R301L – Outdoor Rowing Emulation
BH Fitness R301L is a unique machine that stands out from the main crowd of indoor rowers due to its structure. It is built in a way that is emulating outdoor rowing. The handle is located further down the rail as well as it is using magnets to provide user with resistance.
User can pick between one of 8 different tension levels tat will provide the right workout. Thanks to magnets, this machine is also quiet in operation. That’s right, you can use this machine next to someone sleeping and they won’t even notice it.
The seat and handle on this machine do a great job – both are padded and specifically designed for majority of users to feel comfortable during long workout sessions. There is nothing better than a good handle to grip on during an hour long rowing session.
At the front of the machine there a tracking monitor that shows real time statistics about your workout such as stroke count, calories burned, time elapsed, scan and stroke per minute. Due to this being a budget machine the screen operates on AA batteries.
As most of the rowing machines reviewed in this list, this machine is no exception when it comes to ability fold in half. It is also a very light machine and can be easily transported around the place. Due to lack of the wheels at the front of the machine it looks more like dragging it around.
Even with its downsides, this machine still provides a great full body workout for beginners and intermediate rowers. Amazon review suggest that this is a very sturdy machine that can be regularly used to improve health, but once you get to a certain level of fitness it starts to lack resistance. I recommend this machine for people new to fitness and rowing as it has proven to be a great piece of equipment for everyone who are looking to tone their body and loose fat.
BH Fitness R301L Pros & Cons
- Folds in half
- Long manufacturer warranty
- Stylish design
- Great value
- Screen is not backlit
- Comes without batteries
7. Body Sculpture BR3010 – Versatile 2-in-1 Rowing Machine
I would like to finish off this list with Body Sculpture BR3010 rower. I have put this machine at the very end for several reasons. First of all, it is a very basic rower that utilises resistance coming from cords. Second of all – it is a very versatile machine that can be used in vertical stance for your typical gym exercises such as tricep triangle or bicep curl. Basically, it is a very light and simple 2-in-1 cross trainer that will compliment your home gym in a best way.
To convert this rowing machine into a resistance workout machine simply stand it upright. You can do different exercises with is such as bicep curls, pec flies, lateral raises and more. This is perfect for anyone who is willing to do cardio for toning as well as gaining more strength and muscle mass.
It can be a low cost gym quality equipment, but it sure does the job well. In order to maximise your benefits from this machine it comes with instructional DVD. Watch professional coach videos to learn how to do exercises properly and shoot your fitness level to brand new heights.
There is also a tracking screen included with this machine that will show your workout stats such as time elapsed, calories burned, strokes per minute, strokes total count and scan.
If you are looking to save some money on gym equipment as well as get a great 2-in-1 mini gym machine -t his is your best pick. It will get rid of your need for a gym membership as well as will provide a quality all round body workout at the comfort of your own home.
BR3010 Pros & Cons
- Super lightweight
- Folds in half
- Manufacturer warranty
- Best for beginners
- Display is not very precise
- Doesn’t suit advanced users
Most of the machine that were reviewed in this list are foldable and are suited for beginner to intermediate users. All these machines are very affordable yet come with years of manufacturer warranty and guarantee that they will help you reach your fitness goals. If you are an advanced user and looking for a challenge, please look for professional indoor rowing machine.