Best Rowing Machines For The Money

A rowing machine is a vital piece of workout equipment that mimics the motion of a rowing boat. This versatile exercise equipment is suitable for low impact workout and is a great way to get a full-body exercise in the comfort of your home. 

There are different types and models of rowing machines. To choose the best rowing machine for the money, you need to be familiar with the various options available and compare them. To make this easier for you, we have reviewed some of the best rowing machine for home use especially if you are on a budget. But first, we begin with a list of things to consider before you make a purchase.

1. MaxKare Rowing Machine Air Rower Dual Belt

best in home rowing machine
The MaxKare Rowing Machine Air Rower is best suited for intermediate to advanced users as it is harder to pull than regular rower models. It uses a twin drive belt system that has a base resistance of 6. This is a well-built rower system with a sturdy steel frame. The rowing strap is made of high-quality nylon material which makes it quite durable too. The maximum capacity of this rower is 264 pounds. Despite the sturdy design, the Maxkare rowing machine remains a compact unit. It is easy to fold up and this helps to save space.
  • Strong air resistance
  • Ergonomic design
  • iPad holder
  • High resistance and is not adjustable

2. Mr Rudolf Water Rowing Machine with Bluetooth Monitor, Oak Wood

best rowing machine for the money
Mr. Rudolf Wood Water Rowing Machine is shaped like a real ship. Using this water rowing machine feels like you are actually rowing a real boat. As part of its unique design, this unit features an ergonomically designed seat complete with footplates that you can easily adjust to your height. The maximum weight capacity of this unit is 320 pounds. A major unique feature of this rowing machine is the customizable monitor which make sit possible to monitor and manage your exercise time efficiently. This monitor offers 3 setup modes and features Bluetooth connectivity.
  • Features wheels for easy transport
  • Designed for indoor use
  • 3 setup modes

    3. Fitness Reality 1000 Plus Bluetooth Magnetic Rower Rowing Machine

    best rowing machine for home use
    This magnetic rowing machine has a unique design that makes it possible to do additional exercises more than just rowing which means you get more form purchasing this unit. It features a front stabilizer footpad that makes additional workouts possible. It has a maximum capacity of 250lbs and features a 14 -level magnetic tension resistance which you can engage to make your workout more challenging if you want. You can monitor your workout sessions using the Smart Cloud fitness apps which conveniently syncs with the machine. There is an LCD on the machine as well.
    • Extra-wide and comfortable grip
    • Easily customizable for a more challenging workout
    • Large LCD
    • Wide resistance range
    • The wheels don’t really work

    4. Bluefin Fitness Rower Machine Blade Home Gym Foldable

    Bluefin Fitness BLADE rowing machine smoothly simulates natural rowing motions to exercise the abdomen and other parts of the body. It also features a 10-degree include which offers additional resistance for a more effective workout. All parts of this machine are designed for comfortable use. The seats are padded and extra-comfy. The footpads are also designed to be anti-slip and secure. The handlebars are ergonomic and offer a firm grip. This unit arrives partly assembled so setting it up is quite easy. It is also quite easy to stow away when not in use thanks to a convenient foldable design.
    • 8 levels of tension control
    • 10 degrees incline for more resistance
    • Foldable design
    • The app sometimes does not perform well

    5. SereneLife Rowing Machine – Air and Magnetic Rowing Machine

    SereneLife Rowing Machine is a state-of-the-art home workout machine that uses both air and magnetic resistance for low impact workout. This is a durable unit with a well-engineered parts. It is built to last and designed for users of all sizes thanks to a weight capacity of up to 250 pounds. Resistance is adjustable and you can choose between 8 resistance levels depending on your fitness level. The seats are padded hand handlebars have an ergonomic design for a comfortable workout session.
    • Built for users of all sizes
    • Resistance is easily adjustable
    • Digital display to monitor your workout
    • Some complaints about the monitor

    6. Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine

    Sunny health and fitness magnetic rowing machine feature an extra-long slide length which makes it suitable for users of all sizes. This adjustable resistance rowing machine can be customized to your desired resistance level with just a knob twist. It is designed for comfortable use thanks to non-slip foot-pedals and foam grip handlebars that make the machine suitable for long term use. This is a portable unit as well as it has built-in wheels for easy transport.
    • Rails are extra long
    • Portable unit
    • Ergonomic handlebars
    • The distance rowed is not included in the data collected

    7. Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 12 Adjustable Resistance Rowing Machine Rower w/Digital Monitor

    The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 offers a fully customizable workout experience. You can choose between 12 different levels of resistance depending on your fitness. The pedal straps are also adjustable and the rower has stabilizers that allow you to lower the rower to your convenience level. This is a compact unit that you can conveniently move from room to room which makes it one of our top choices and the best rowing machine for home use.
    • Customizable workout experience
    • Ergonomic design
    • Low footprint
    • It can’t stand upright against the wall to stow away

    8. Sunny Health & Fitness Water Rowing Machine Rower w/LCD Monitor

    This sunny health rowing machine uses water resistance for a steady and smooth rowing experience. This unit has 16 fan blades that interact harmoniously with the water for seamless rowing and intense workout. This is a functional, highly comfortable, and one of the best rowing machines on a budget. The seats are molded and padded for comfort. This unit has a fitness meter that tracks workout metrics. This rowing machine also syncs with any type of heart rate monitor to measure your performance.
    • Smooth and steady
    • Can be positioned upright for storage
    • High-density wheel for mobility
    • The resistance is quite minimal

    9. JOROTO Magnetic Rower Rowing Machine with LCD Display

    The Joroto magnetic rowing machine offers 10 resistance levels which make it suitable for working out whether you are a beginner or an expert. The unit’s versatile design makes it the best rowing machine for money for different categories of users. The pedals are non-slip and can be adjusted for different feet size. You can also change the angle of the monitor to make it easy to read. This rowing machine has a wide and ergonomic seat and the handlebar is soft for a comfortable workout experience. This unit is also designed to save space and the caster wheels make it easy to move it whether you want to place it in your home.
    • Quiet operation
    • Save spacing design
    • Ergonomic rowing machine
    • The monitor is quite basic

    10. Stamina ATS Air Rower

    best inexpensive rowing machine
    The Stamina ATS Air rowing machine uses air resistance to deliver efficient low-impact workout. This air rower features lots of upgraded features to make your workout session quite comfortable. The seats are well-padded and upholstered and both the footplates and rowing handles are padded. Hence they are quite convenient to use. This unit comes with floor protectors which helps to protect the floor in your workout area. The unit also has built-in wheels that improve portability and mobility.
    • Easy to assemble
    • Angled rail supports the smooth sliding seat
    • Engineered for comfort
    • Tension is not adjustable

    11. Circuit Fitness Deluxe Foldable Magnetic Rowing Machine

    This rowing machine is one of the most durable you will find around. It is built with heavy-duty aluminum and has a frame designed to be quite stable, reliable, and secure. This is a magnetic rowing machine and you can easily vary resistance settings based on the workout intensity you want. The unit is foldable which makes it easy to store away when it is not in also has wheels for easy transport to anywhere you want to use the machine.
    • Reinforced injection-molded seat for optimum support
    • Variable resistance
    • Durable machine
    • Does not offer much in terms of connectivity

    12. Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5 Performance Monitor

    This air resistance rowing machine is designed to be suitable for most users thanks to high weight capacity and versatile height design. It is particularly a great choice for newbies and the best rowing machine for beginners since it adjusts to the force applied. The maximum weight capacity is 500lbs and the footrests are adjustable for convenience. You will love how easy it is to store this unit when it is not in use. It separates into two different pieces for easy storage. In addition to the versatile design, this unit has digital features that enhance your workout experience. The reliable performance monitor tracks your progress and gives your reliable data. It also syncs with a wide range of fitness apps to monitor your workout sessions seamlessly.
    • Easy to store
    • Versatile design fits most users
    • The handle is quite ergonomic
    • The seat is not the most comfortable

    Buying Guide For Best Rowing Machines For The Money

    Resistance Types: This is arguably the most important factor to consider in choosing the best rowing machine for the money. Rowing machines have different resistance types and the one you settle for eventually determines your rowing experience. The four main resistance types include:

    • Air: Air resistance rowers derive their resistance from air generated by a spinning fan wheel. When the handle is pulled, the flywheel spins to create wind. The harder you pull, the more wind generated. If you pull harder, more wind is generated and the resistance is higher. Hence, the resistance level with this type of unit depends on how fast or hard you pull. Although air rowing machines give you control over your workout, they tend to take up more space and are generally noisier than other models. 
    • Water: A water rowing machine operates on pretty much the same principle as an air resistance unit. The only difference, in this case, is that the unit uses a paddle that is suspended in a tank of water that comes with the unit. Just like the air resistance unit, the resistance depends on how hard or fast you pull the machine. They are generally more expensive but most people believe water rowing machines offer the smoothest rowing experience of all four types of rowing machines.
    • Hydraulic Piston: The resistance in this type of unit is generated by hydraulic pistons. Usually, most rowing machines have two hydraulic pistons with one attached to each handlebar. But there are units with just 1 piston at the center as well. This type of rowers are generally cheaper and they don’t make a lot of noise. You can also vary the resistance using a knob on the machine. However, they tend to overheat so they are only recommended for short cardio sessions. 
    • Magnetic Rowers: They have a magnetic braking system which creates resistance in the unit. When the handle is pulled, a metal flywheel spins, and the magnet is moved closer or farther to vary the resistance. This type of unit is frictionless so they are virtually silent. You can also vary the resistance quite easily. However, most people feel the magnetic unit offers very low resistance compared to other types of rowers.

    Space Considerations (storage features): Be sure to check the footprint of any rower you purchase. If you don’t have a lot of space to spare, then you should look for units that are foldable and can be stored in an upright position.

    Noise Level: The noise level of a rowing machine depends primarily on the type of resistance it uses. Magnetic rowers are considered the most silent. Air and water units are silent as well but hydraulic piston units operate noisily. You should also check reviews to compare the noise level of each model you are considering. 

    Monitor Controls: Most rowing machines come with a handy computer that gives information on distance, time, calories burned. This allows you to monitor your workout. However, the quality of The LCD varies from one unit to the other. Some machines also sync with fitness apps for even more seamless monitoring. 

    Key Features of Comfort and Adjustability: Generally, you want a unit that is quite comfortable to use. Thus, you should look out for features that make improves the ergonomics and comfort of the machine. Be sure to check the seat, handlebars, and footplates of the machine. A rower with an adjustable seat height would be a great idea too. This allows you to adjust the unit to your height to ensure the efficiency of your workout.

    Benefits of Using a Rowing Machine

    A rowing machine an efficient cardio workout equipment that helps to exercise several muscle groups in both your lower and upper body. Some of the key benefits of using a rowing machine include:

    • Weight Loss.
    • Improves Cardiovascular Health
    • The low-impact workout that builds several important muscle groups
    • Improves Stamina and endurance 
    • It is great for men and women over 50 years of age 
    • It is a fluid and non-contact workout 
    • Easy to use 


    A rowing machine helps to get your heart pumping and improves the health of your lungs and the rest of your body. With this review, you should find it easier to find the best rowing machine for the money. Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine is our top pick on this list. It is a magnetic rower so it operates silently. This unit is also quite customizable and is one of the best rowing machines on a budget. 

    I have a degree in engineering and am passionate in helping people find the best products for the money using my own personal experiences. I'm a father, son, brother, uncle, coach, husband, and engineer who loves to spend time with his two boys and beautiful wife. In my free time my passion is to help others. I love anything and everything technology and spend many hours researching products that I have interests in for myself, my family and friends. My hope is that my time spent researching products will help you save time and money so you can free up your time and spend it doing what you love to do most!

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