Buyer’s Guide: 5 Reasons to consider before you buy an indoor rower

If you want the best of both worlds i.e. cardio and strength training, an indoor rower is a must buy. Rowers are one of the very few cardio machines capable of working out the entire body unlike the spin bike or treadmill but buying a rower isn’t easy. You need to take into consideration a lot of factors since you’d be making a huge investment. Here are a few of those factors.

Frequency of usage

Spending around $500-$1000 is only valuable if you make the most of the equipment and unlike running or cycling rowing will require time and practice to learn unless you’re an actual rowing or have previously used an indoor rowing. Concept 2 Model D is probably the best rowing machine under $1000.

You can always get a few trial classes at a nearby gym. For effective results be consistent with the usage. We’d recommend working out at least 4 days in a week.

Storage space available

Before you buy an indoor rower do take a full measurement of your room because when in use the rowers tend to occupy quite a bit of space. For those with smaller spaces a hydraulic rower is ideal or else you’ll need a foldable rowing like the Concept2 Rower. With these rowing, you can further detach the railing to make extra room. Foldable rowers stand upright and thus are also easy to move from one room to the next when not in use.

indoor rower 1


With quality comes a higher price and if you’re looking for an absolute beast, put aside your budget concerns and go for the Concept2 Model D. It comes with all important features like PM5 monitor which displays all the workout-related info you’ll need, offers high durability and is easy to assemble but will cost you around $2000.

Most budget options will cost you $500 or lesser but the cheaper the cost the cheaper is the quality. These rowers lack features like a heart rate monitor, offer low durability and can be noisy when in use.


  • Magnetic rowers are some of the smoothest and soundless rowing machines Here resistance is created using electromagnets placed close to a flywheel. These rowers also come with adjustable handlebars and saddles and can also be folded making it easier to store.
  • With air rowing machines resistance increases as you rowing harder with the help of a flywheel which spins and creates resistance against the air flow. Maintenance and repair cost of these rowers is low and they are the easiest to use but are bulky, expensive and tend to be noisy.
  • If you’re in for a more realistic approach, then a water rower fits the bill. In these machines, resistance is built using a water tank and paddles that rotate against the water as you row. The more the water the higher is the resistance.

indoor rower 2

WaterRower machines are made using natural wood thus it blends into your home easily. The removable water tank makes it easier to store but like air rowers, water rowers too are costlier.