Best Rowing Machines Under $500

In A Rush?

Check Out the Stamina ATS Air Rower

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  • Dynamic wind resistance provides an efficient smooth rowing stroke. 
  • The upholstered, padded, sliding seat makes rowing comfortable and sliding easy even during longer rowing routines. 
  • Proven to provide a nearly unsurpassed aerobic workout without the relentless pounding to your joints
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    For extra convenience, the Stamina® 1403 Air Rower folds to a compact size for easy storage with built-in wheels. 

For less than $500, it’s hard to go wrong with the Stamina ATS Air Rower. This rower uses simple air power for resistance and the frame is made entirely of steel.

The Stamina ATS also has a built in LCD fitness tracker to monitor speed, distance, and more.


Rowing machines are powerful fitness tools that can help you lose weight and add muscle tone at the same time.

If you’re in the market for a rowing machine but want to keep the price below $500, keep reading for a quick look at some of the top models on the market right now.


The Best Rowing Machines Under $500

1. Stamina ATS Air Rower

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If you’re looking for a simple, reliable rower with plenty of power and flexibility, check out the Stamina ATS Air Rower.

This air-powered rower relies on your power output and speed to adjust the effort level. The harder you row, the more intense the resistance becomes. This makes for simple, no frills operation that equates to durability and long-term reliability.

Progress, distance, time, and more can also be tracked through an LCD monitor. The wide, padded seat of the ATS provides plenty of comfort for bodies of all shapes and sizes.

Don’t be intimidated by the size of the ATS air rower. With a collapsible, fold up build, this rower can be quickly folded up for storage and place in a closet or other storage area.

Specifications:

  • Air powered—adjusts with speed and effort level
  • LCD monitor tracks activity and progression
  • Folds into package of just 48 x 18 x 28 inches

Pros:

  • Fold up design for easy storage
  • Simple, reliable air-powered system
  • Wide, padded seat for maximum comfort

Cons:

  • Limited feature set
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    Very few settings or digital controls to adjust

2. Kettler Home Exercise/Fitness Equipment: Favorit Rowing Machine

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Simple, durable, and highly adjustable, the Kettler Home Exercise/Fitness Equipment: Favorit Rowing Machine is another great choice for rowing machine shoppers looking to keep the overall price below $500.

With resistance coming from two industrial strength pistons, the Favorit can be quickly adjusted between 50 different resistance levels. Users simply move a knob to a new resistance marking. Rather than just moving faster for more resistance, this rower allows you to set the difficulty right up front.

A padded seat and ergonomically correct foot pedals make the Favorit comfortable to use. And a 285 weight capacity ensures that it can be used by most people.

Unfortunately, the Favorit cannot be folded up or easily taken apart for storage. It is, however, much more compact than most air powered rowers. Just to be safe, make sure you have space for the unit before picking one up.

Specs:

  • Resistance adjustable to 50 different levels
  • LCD monitor tracks and records workouts
  • Made in Germany

Pros:

  • Simple, durable design
  • Resistance adjustable to 50 different levels
  • Ergonomic seat and foot pedal design

Cons:

  • Cannot be folded or disassembled for storage

3. Sunny Health & Fitness Water Rowing Machine Rower w/ LCD Monitor - Obsidian SF-RW5713

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If you want a truly authentic rowing experience, a water rowing machine is the way to go. Unfortunately, most water rowers are quite expensive.

This is not so with the Sunny Health & Fitness Water Rowing Machine Rower w/ LCD Monitor – Obsidian SF-RW5713. This rower comes in well below the $500 mark but still provides an excellent water rowing experience.

Along with a smooth, authentic water rowing feel, the Obsidian is equipped with a digital monitor for accurately tracking heart rate, distance rowed, and other important fitness statistics.

Non-marking rubber wheels make this rower easy to move around. And, while it doesn’t fold or disassemble for storage, the Obsidian is designed to be stored on its end—so it can easily be stored out of the way in a closet or storage area.

Specs:

  • Smooth water rowing action
  • Ergonomic, adjustable seat
  • Electronic fitness monitor built right in

Pros:

  • Water rowing experience at an affordable price
  • Durable, all steel build
  • Can be moved easily with rubber wheels

Cons:

  • Although it can be stored upright, it doesn’t fold up

4. Stamina X Air Rower

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If you really want to row, the Stamina X Air Rower is a simple, all steel air rower that’s made for frequent use. Relying solely on the resistance generated by the fan blades as they spin, this rower is ready to go as hard as you can.

Although the X Air keeps it simple, it does have a multi-function fitness monitor that’s designed to track distance, speed, and calories burned.

Another great feature of the X Air is its ability to be stored in tight places. The X Air has wheels for easy movement and can be folded in half to save space.

Specs:

  • All steel construction supports rowers up to 250 pounds
  • Fan powered resistance
  • Ergonomic, molded seat and pivoting foot rests

Pros:

  • Good build quality
  • Comfortable seat and foot pedal design
  • Folds and has wheels built in for easy storage

Cons:

  • Does not track heart rate or more in-depth metrics

Final Verdict

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With so many rowing machines available in so many different configurations, it can be hard to pick just one.

But with a budget of $500 or less, one of the best choices available is the Stamina ATS Air Rower (Check Price on Amazon.com).

This rower is simple and durable. Plus, it folds up for easy storage.

Air power ensures that you’ll never run out of resistance–the harder you row, the harder the resistance gets. And, a built-in fitness tracker helps you track your progress.

If you’re shopping for a rowing machine, be sure to check out the Stamina ATS Air Rower.