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    15 Rowing Machines That Beat Getting A Gym Membership

    For the days you can't make it — or don't feel like going to the gym

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    1. A rowing machine that uses magnetic resistance (so none of that constant whirring like some other exercise machines) to give you a~quiet~ workout that both you and your neighbors can appreciate.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Stay connected to your smart device as you work out using the included Bluetooth and listen to music or watch TV. The LCD display screen will also allow you to track your performance, which may even trick you into loving exercise.

    Promising review: "This rower exceeded my expectations. It's also very quiet. I'd say the noise is equivalent to maybe riding a bike on pavement — and that's from the seat movement, not the band or magnetic portion of the rower. If you are looking for a quiet, space-saving, cardio workout machine for your home gym, this is it. Again, this is my first rower so I'm not able to compare it to higher quality/priced machines, but trust me when I say it gets the job done!" —Kekai Barros

    Get it from Amazon for $285.45 (available with or without a 6-month fitness subscription).

    2. A portable rowing machine for those looking to ditch their couch potato tendencies. It was also designed to be more lightweight, so you can move it around easier — did we mention it's also under $200 for those on a budget?

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    The side handles will make you feel as though you're actually on the water. When you're finished working out for the day, it conveniently folds up and can even be stored in most closets.

    Promising review: "The unit operates very quietly and smoothly. I like the adjustable tension, the ability to stand it up out of the way, and the portability. The frame is very solid and stable. Best of all, it has a comfortable seat — nicely padded and large enough to be comfy, not like those dinky bicycle seats that I always have to replace because they hurt my butt!" —lathamdm

    Get it from Amazon for $149.99 (available with or without a two-year warranty).

    3. A foldable rowing machine to help those short on space still fit their morning workout in. Now, you can actually have that home gym you've been dreaming of.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    If you're looking for products for anyone new to exercise, this rowing machine comes with 16 different levels of resistance. If you need to make your workout a bit harder, just use increase the level of resistance. You'll also be able to track your workouts with the display screen, then fold it up when you're done.

    Promising review: "I have been eyeing this rowing machine for a while and thought it would fit perfectly in with my home gym. It has been easy to use and I love how it is working basically the whole body without putting so much strain on it. It can be folded and pushed to the side easily when not in use, which I love about it! Definitely a space-saver and one of my favorite machines to workout in thus far. Highly recommend!" —SAfreen

    Get it from Amazon for $359.99 (available for $30 off when coupon is applied before checkout).

    4. A Hydrow Rower just begging you to give it a whirl. While it's definitely a splurge, if you're a more experienced rower, this can help you stay in shape during your off-season.

    Hydrow

    With a membership to their fitness subscription, you get access to over 30,000 classes hosted by real trainers. Adjust the monitor to fit your needs and enjoy listening or watching your favorite videos using the included Bluetooth.

    Promising review: "Our Hydrow rocks! I always liked working out on a rower at the gym. After deciding to set up a home mini-gym with a rower as the centerpiece, I read a ton of reviews on various machines. It didn’t take long to conclude Hydrow was the way to row. The network of content and how it’s presented is so user-friendly. The feeling I get working up a sweat while seemingly and convincingly rowing on some of the planet’s most beautiful and iconic bodies of water defies explanation. There are even several live rowing opportunities you can participate in on a daily basis. All my workout stats are visible in real-time and preserved, allowing me to 'feel' the progress I’m making." —BucknKnox

    Get it from Hydrow for $1,795 (originally $2,295, available with or without a fitness subscription).

    5. An air rowing machine ready to ~blow~ you away. Who says working out has to be uncomfortable? This model includes padded handles and a seat that won't leave you waddling or with blisters afterward.

    Model working out on black rowing machine
    Walmart

    Customize your workout by choosing your resistance level depending on what your exercise needs are. The padded handlebars will also allow you to have a wider range of motion, while the adjustable foot pedals make it more comfortable while you work out.

    Promising review: "This is a really good air rowing machine at an even better price! Overall, this has been a great addition to my home gym (aka corner of the bedroom). The workout on here is solid, and it sneaks up on you. I do not realize how hard I am working out until I get to half a mile or so, and my arms start cramping, legs start shaking." —Taylor Inman

    Get it from Walmart for $199.99 (originally $399.99). 

    6. A rowing machine for beginners who want to row, row, row their way towards a healthier lifestyle. The display screen will also track calories burned, total strokes done, total time spent working out, and more.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    For beginners who are new to working out, this model provides a workout using water resistance for a full-body workout. If you're an experienced rower, then reviewers suggest investing in a more heavy-duty model as this one is meant for more light use. The rubber wheels will also make moving the machine easier.

    Promising review: "Very happy with the purchase! A great price point and features for casual home gym use. If you're a serious rower, this may not be quite enough for you, but it's a great machine for beginners. Use it in combination with weights or plyometrics for an awesome workout! It's so much kinder on the joints than a treadmill, and it takes up less space." —Slats

    Get it from Amazon for $479.15.

    7. A smartphone-compatible rowing machine because who wants to listen to themselves panting while they work out? Get ready to turn on the sweat-inducing playlist and pretend you're rowing on a gentle lake.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Choose between six levels of water resistance to personalize your workout experience. If you prefer watching TV or have a favorite workout video, then attach your smart device to the built-in holder.

    Promising review: "My hubby wanted a rowing machine. I was skeptical since it didn't look like real exercise to me. I was very, very wrong. I completed my first rowing workout through my iPhone last night. Using this machine feels like a total body workout. Above the display, there is a convenient holder for my iPhone. I really like that I don't have to cover the LCD display with my phone as the phone sits right on top." —Nidia

    Get it from Amazon for $399.99.

    8. An Echelon Smart rowing machine with a variety of resistance levels that allow you to customize your workout so it's never the same (particularly helpful on those days when you're feeling a little bit lazy).

    Amazon

    Stay active even when you're not at the gym using one of the 32 magnetic resistance levels. When you're finished working out, you can fold the machine or move it someplace else using the built-in wheels.

    Promising review: "The experience of putting this together was sheer pleasure. The simplicity of the design had me from box to rowing in under 30 minutes. I've had this equipment for two weeks now, and it has removed my hip and knee pain caused by running. It is very quiet as well. I have only one complaint and that is that sometimes the resistance does not work and requires me to restart the machine." —M. Pierce

    Get it from Amazon for $999+ (available with or without a membership subscription).

    9. A wooden rowing machine elegantly crafted to give you that authentic rowboat feel. After a long day, close your eyes and just imagine you're gliding down a peaceful stream. The best part? It's super compact and can easily be folded away for storage.

    amazon.com

    Fill this machine up with water in the blue water compartment until full, then enjoy a more realistic rowing feel. It comes with various resistance levels to challenge yourself with and was made out of wood instead of metal for a smoother feel.

    Promising review: "This rower comes with a solid wood design which blends right in with our wood furniture. The water-based resistance allows smooth rowing strokes and gives a realistic rowing experience. Overall, it's a good home gym investment and I would recommend." —YG

    Get it from Amazon for $559+ (available in three wood styles).

    10. A slip-proof rowing machine ideal for anyone who wants to avoid that annoying moment when your feet keep missing the pedals. Along with a padded handlebar, you can be as comfortable as possible during your workout.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    If you enjoy keeping track of your progress over time, this machine comes with a display screen that'll show your time, total strokes, calories burned, and more.

    Promising review: "It has textured nonslip adjustable foot pedals that ensure safe footing during your workout. It also has padded grip handlebars which give you complete comfort and ease for your hands. So easy to use with a simple twist you can totally customize your own workout plan adjusting it as you move forward. It’s a smooth and quiet fitness journey." —AuDeL

    Get it from Amazon for $279.99 (available for $40 off when coupon is applied before checkout).

    11. A water rowing machine made for anyone who can't easily grab some oars and hit the waves themselves. Since it has water resistance though, it's the closest method to feeling as though you're truly rowing a boat.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    To use, just make sure to fill the compartment with water, then customize your resistance to match your workout needs. There's also a Bluetooth monitor to connect to your smart device and track your workouts over time.

    Promising review: "Rowing is my exercise of choice. I had a good rower but it was not a REAL water rower like this one. I wanted a water rower for that real hard workout like rowing on water. If you have never rowed, you might want to, it will get your abs, back, thighs, and arms in killer shape without hurting your knees — and my knees bother me more the older I get. This is a great machine for the money, glides along like smooth butter, and gives you a hard workout." —Gilly Girl

    Get it from Amazon for $569.99.

    12. A magnetic resistance rowing machine with 16 resistance levels to choose from for almost anyone from a newbie to the most experienced of rowers. No matter the skill level, post-workout soreness is a pain everyone can learn to enjoy!

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Whether you have a home gym or smaller space, this compact design can fold up to save space, or leave it out. It also comes equipped with magnetic resistance for a smoother pull. Track your workout progress too using the display screen.

    Promising review: "I'm totally hooked on this machine, rowing almost daily now. I love that it works my core, glutes, legs, and upper body all at once. The slide range works for both of our sizes and the resistance meets my husband's more advanced level. We love the magnet drive for feel and how quiet the operation is." —Avid Reader CA

    Get it from Amazon for $278.99 (available for $16 off when coupon is applied before checkout).

    13. A rowing machine that may just convince you to limit your screen time. Don't worry though, the LCD display screen can help with your withdrawals — especially since it's customizable.

    Product image of black and red rowing machine against white background
    Walmart

    Change the backlight of the display screen to match your favorite color and keep track of your workouts over time. It even comes with a padded seat and handlebars for added comfort.

    Promising review: "I really love this rower! I love that I feel like I'm getting cardio AND weight lifting in the same exercise routine, which you'd get with any rower. But this one from ProForm is super quiet, and the seat is so comfortable and really smooth as it glides. The screen is really easy to see all my stats, and there's a super convenient tablet holder above it that has a spring in it that clamps down and keeps my phone or iPad from falling out." —Stacy

    Get it from Walmart for $574 (available with or without fitness subscription).

    14. A rowing machine for when you're feeling too lazy to go to the gym, but still motivated enough to work out. Most reviewers suggest using this for a light workout or if you're just starting out.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Extreme workouts on this model may lead the spring to break, but if you're just starting out or are looking for a light warm-up, reviewers recommend this to get the job done. The air rower uses a fan and various resistant levels to fit your workout needs.

    Promising review: "I am not using this machine to train for competitive rowing, or as a primary means of exercise. I use it to create five minutes of cardio during my normal workouts. It is not a gym-quality machine, but it is far from being cheap either. It seems very suitable for a home gym and — unless you are a serious rower — should hold up for a long time. It folds up nicely to take up very minimal space. It works on a fan belt system, so it will make a noise like a loud floor fan, but that would be the same for the professional level rowers as well.

    Get it from Amazon for $339.99+ (available in four colors).

    15. A programmable rowing machine so you can be your own at-home fitness trainer. Choose between pre-set routines or get creative and make your own!

    Amazon

    This model also comes with a heart rate monitor so you can watch your progress over time. It also features a display screen that'll provide you with your stats for every use. The programmable feature is worth it. It lets you select the length of workout, distance, number of strokes, and one of eight preset routines, including one that keeps you in your target heart rate (if you use the monitor).

    Promising review: "I went with magnetic resistance because watching any video of an air resistance rower, the first thing you notice is how noisy they are. So that was a no-brainer choice. People complain about the uncomfortable seat. I'm a cyclist so this isn't an issue for me, it's certainly not worse than your standard bike saddle." —Grrgoyl

    Get it from Amazon for $699.99+ (available in two colors).

    That post-workout feeling:

    Fox / Via giphy.com

    Reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.