Best rowing machine reviews- row yourself fit

Some people say I’m strange because I like to row. Now while it might seem like something best done outside on the open water I prefer indoors. Until recently this was a bit of an issue since you can’t just go rowing in the bath tub. So I bought myself the best rowing machine I could find. Before I decided to buy I checked out the best places to find a rowing machine for sale and you will find the results of this search below.

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Best rowing machine vs Used rowing machine for sale

When I first started my search I was checking my local garage sales and classifieds to see what I could find. What I found was that most of the used rowing machines for sale were in poor condition. While you might think this is obvious since people would have worn them out that wasn’t the case.

What I actually found was that generally, a used rowing machine was at the cheaper end of the available range. They tended to be of fairly low quality and what’s more, they had been stuck in a garage gathering dust. Some had rust while others had clearly been stored poorly and damaged by having other items placed on top of them. I’m not saying a cheap rowing machine is always a bad buy but that does seem to be the case.

I’m sure if you search enough you might be able to find the occasional great buy out there. But after a couple of weeks of searching, I gave up and decided to buy new and see what the best rowing machine I could get for my budget was.

What to look for in a rowing machine?

I’ll be honest before I started looking I hadn’t realized just how many options there were available. From an air rowing machine to a water rowing machine or even a magnetic rowing machine. They are all ultimately for rowing but they achieve their resistance systems in different ways. There is also a pretty big difference in price ranges.

I wanted a few things from my rowing machine. It had to fit in my house so it needed to be a reasonably compact rowing machine. Since I had already had a look at lots of the cheap rowing machines for sale I figured I would need to spend a little more to get what I wanted.

Being a rowing fan I also wanted something that would give me a really good workout. This meant I needed something with a good resistance level that was pretty tough.

So bottom line I needed something that is almost as high quality as you might find at your local gym. With all that in mind, I hit the research trail and here is what I found.

Concept 2 rower

If you have ever done any indoor rowing, been to a gym or a crossfit box then you will probably have seen a Concept 2 rower. These rowing machines are known for their quality and user experience. If you know anything about Crossfit you will know how hard these rowers have to work. That tells us just about everything we need to know about how robust concept 2 rowers really are.

I must admit apart from the quality and backup you get with any concept 2 rower I think they look awesome. This might not be super important to you but it doesn’t hurt right. It looks like something Batman might use to workout. Ok, nerd alert over now.

While Concept 2 has a few options available on the market there are two main ones that are most popular. These are the concept 2 model d rower and the concept 2 model e rower.

Let’s take a look at them both:

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5

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To be quite honest we can basically stop here and not bother to check out any other options. The concept 2 model d rower is the best selling indoor rowing machine in the world. There is a reason for that. It’s awesome. Before you go and buy one just be reminded that this quality doesn’t come cheap. This is not one of those cheap rowing machines from the shopping channel. The Concept 2 Model d is the real deal.

The rowing machine of choice for many pros and gyms the title of best selling indoor rowing machine is well backed up. It consistently gets five-star reviews from users and I have to say I agree.

Model D quality

One thing that will strike you right away is the confidence Concept 2 have in this model. It comes with a 2-year warranty on the moving parts and an extended 5-year warranty on the frame. It is also capable of taking a heavy load with a top rated 500-pound weight capacity.

The flywheel design delivers excellent resistance with a smooth flow and minimal noise. Something many of its competitors have failed to deliver.

It has fully adjustable footrests, a 14-inch seat height and the rowing handle itself has been ergonomically designed.

Concept 2 model d size & storage

While it is not a small rowing machine it can be separated into two pieces for easy storage. It also comes with caster wheels so you can move it around when you’re done. This is also a handy feature if you don’t always use it in the same room. You won’t need to struggle trying to carry it (although that could be a workout in itself).

When you’re using it your gonna need to have 9 feet by 4 feet of clear floor space. I recommend a little more just so you can get your rowing session in, in comfort. Just keep this in mind if you have a small space to fit your rower.

It comes in two colors, black and light gray. I like the black version but it’s a personal choice anyway.

Monitor Features:

The Concept 2 model d comes with a pretty advanced built-in monitor. They call it the performance monitor 5. It has a built-in backlight to make reading it easier in just about any light. A feature which allows you to wirelessly track your heart rate. And also its USB flash drive compatible so you can save and store your workout data. This is ideal for those who workout while traveling or at the gym.

One thing I really like is the adjustable monitor arm. My wife and I both use the rower and there is quite the height difference between us. This feature allows us to both move the monitor to the best height when in use. Keep an eye out of this if you are really tall or really short.

Overall comment on the concept 2 model D rower

You probably guessed by now that I think this is the best rowing machine. It does what it needs to do. It comes with a long warranty, great design and plenty of challenge for any fitness level. The tools, assembly instructions and quick start guide are all included in the box.

Get yourself one of these and start rowing!

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Concept2 Model E Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5

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So if the model D is the best buy then why are we even considering other models? Well, sometimes one size doesn’t fit all. That is one of the main reasons someone may want to consider the concept 2 model E.

When you first look at the model E I’m sure you will think hey that looks exactly like the model D. The model E is the luxury rowing machine from ConcIts2. It’s unique feature is its seat height.

The frame leaves the seat at the same height as a standard kitchen chair. This is a considerable difference versus the model D. Apart from that it is backed by the same great lengthy warranty and quality guarantee. It’s other features and user experience is the same as the model D.

So why would you choose this model? The seat height is the only consideration. If you have back pain issues or joint problems this could be a great way to ensure you still get your rowing workout done. The other possibly more obvious reason is if you are very tall then the concept 2 model E is for you.

If you are into luxury or are just really tall check it out!

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Sunny Health and Fitness

You may not have heard of sunny health and fitness. If not then you might be surprised to know they are are very large fitness equipment company. They supply a range of machines such as treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, steppers and even strength machines. Of course, they also supply rowing machines which is why you are here.

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine

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So what’s the lowdown on this sunny rowing machine? Well if your budget is not quite up to the levels of a concept 2 rowing machine then this might be for you.

One of the first things you might notice is that the sunny health and fitness rowing machine is a magnetic rower. It offers eight different levels of resistance. This is adjusted with a tension know which controls the resistance level using the magnet.

Sunny health and fitness rower-quick guide video
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This model comes with a cushioned seat and large textured pedals which provide a non-slip surface. There is also safety straps for additional security during your row.

Key features

As I mentioned both concept 2 models have a fully adjustable display panel. The LCD monitor in the sunny rower is a fixed, built-in setup. It still gets the job done but doesn’t have the flexibility the others offer.

The cushioned seat I already mentioned along with the textured pedals work really well. The rowing handle also has a non-slip grip which is very handy when you work up a sweat.

If you’re short on space then the sunny health & fitness rower could suit you really well. It is foldable which makes it very easy to store especially in a small space.

  • Overall I have to say sunny do manage to deliver a excellent product considering the price. At almost a fifth of the price of the concept 2 model D is quite a difference.
  • The foldable design and lighter frame mean its much easier to move around and store
  • It’s a clever design and gets the job done nicely
  • The lack of adjustment in the display panel and height can be annoying
  • The weight limit is much lower at 250 pounds (half the limit of the concept range)
  • The warranty is only 90 days which is very short

All in all the sunny health and fitness magnetic rowing machine is a solid choice. If I was just getting started or my budget didn’t stretch to the concept 2 pricing I would go for this model. It is the best rowing machine in this price range.

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