Exercise Equipment Review

A Comparison of Rowing Machines

If you are considering the purchase of new exercise equipment, rowing machines provide an excellent, low impact workout for both the core and the upper body. The smooth repetitive rowing movement provides a superior aerobic workout while also targeting specific upper body muscle groups for unbeatable results.

Why Consider a Rowing Machine?

Along with being an effective low impact, calorie-burning workout for the upper body and core, studies held at the University of Denmark suggest that rowing can actually help improve and boost the immune system. Research shows that those who participated in water rowing exercises on a regular basis experienced a huge increase in the cells that maintain the immune system. This research has also shown that these same people continued to have an elevated immunity between exercise sessions as well.

While these studies were done for those actually rowing on water, the same benefits can also be achieved through the use of rowing machines, which make them an excellent tool to consider if you are on the market for new exercise equipment.

Types of Rowing Machines

If you have reviewed the benefits and are considering the purchase of a rowing machine for your home, three main types of machines are readily available to you on the market. Take note of these different types of machines and their features to help you choose a piece of exercise equipment that will meet your needs.

Hydraulic Machines

The mechanics of this type of machine feature two hydraulic pistons that create the resistance that you are 'rowing' against. Unfortunately, this type of rower produces the most jerky and unnatural rowing simulation, which can often be uncomfortable for the user. While these machines are probably the cheapest on the market, fitness experts do not recommend purchasing this type of rower if you are looking for quiet operation and ease of use. Also, these are not recommended for users that have issues with chronic back pain, as these jerky and sometimes harsh movements can cause additional pain.

Air Machines

Among the different varieties of rowers on the fitness equipment market, air rowing machines are definitely the most commonly used type of rowing exercise equipment both in home and in gyms around the country. The mechanics of this machine revolves around wind resistance that is created by a finned flywheel on the front of the rowing machine. As the user rows, the wheel sucks in air, creating resistance that increases as you increase your speed.

Water Machines

By far the most expensive variety of rower, water machines use an actual 22-inch round tank and stainless steel paddles to create an effective and highly realistic rowing workout. The paddle pushing the water and moving it past the tank creates the resistance. The intensity of the workout correlates directly to the speed of the rower’s effort. Unfortunately, this variety does take a bit of assembly and does require some extra space so if you want something simple to use at home, your money may be better spend on a different variety of rower.

Rowing machines are definitely an excellent choice for those looking for an effective, low impact core and upper body exercise regimen that they can use in their home. These machines are not only easy to use for people of all fitness levels, but they also provide additional health and immunity benefits to the regular participant. If you are thinking about shopping for a rower in the near future and are looking for additional guidance on various types and brands, explore our list below for more information about these beneficial exercise machines.

Below are the specific models reviewed

Lifespan RW 1000 Rower
A folding wind resistance rower that provides an excellent workout. Click here for the full review.

BodyCraft VR100
Unique in its design using both air and magnetic resistance.... Read the full review.

Kettler Coach Rower
How does this magnetic rower hold up against the others. Read the full review.

Concept 2 Rowing Machine
Used in the majority of fitness clubs the Concept 2 is without doubt the best air resistance rower on the market. Click here for the full review.

Water Rower
Each one is handcrafted and looks like a fine piece of furniture. Click here for the full review.

Schwinn Windrigger Rowing Machine
Has Schwinn priced itself out of the market. Have a look at the full review.