The Best Exercise Bikes for 2018

Best Exercise Bikes for 2018

Welcome to The Best Exercise Bikes for 2018 Buyer’s Guide! As always, we’re glad you found us here at Physique Authority and we’re excited to present you with the most current, industry-leading information regarding the best exercise equipment you can buy.


 

Introduction Part I


2018 brings many exciting things for us to talk about and we can’t wait to get started and show you how to pick the best exercise bike for your budget.

By the way, if you’re interested in any other exercise equipment, feel free to browse the very top navigation bar or simply select GEAR from the main bar!

*Special note:

If you’re after a great bike with a back rest, and you want to be more comfortable, we have an intensive Recumbent Bike Buyer’s Guide as well which you can check out here.


What we’re going to cover are 3 price categories that we think are the most popular. We’ll go through as many exercise bikes as we feel is appropriate for each category – and we even feature an Honourable Mention that we think brings some exciting features to the table.

Let’s jump right in why don’t we!


As with the other buyer’s guides, this was created with knowledgeable fitness experts’ expertise and we think that this is the most detailed, comprehensive list on exercise bikes you will find in 2018.

If you select the right one, an exercise bike can be a fantastic way to get in shape and have a convenient way to work out and do some cycling in the comfort of your own home during inclement or cold weather. 

However, riding a bike in your home or at the gym alone unfortunately is not the best way to lose unwanted weight. For an in-depth guide to weight loss check out our article How Many Calories Do I Need to Eat to Lose Weight?

In each of the 3 price-ranges you are going to find certain features that might just be right for your budget. You definitely do not have to spend a fortune on an indoor bike to get an absolute killer workout and we’ll show you exactly why down below.


However, there is one exception: If you’re an advanced cyclist with the requirement for more levels of resistance, the latter 2 categories might be better suited for you as cheaper bikes might not offer enough resistance, durability and warranty for excessive and frequent cycling sessions. 

When you decide to shell out slightly more on a higher quality exercise bike you will be sure to get a superior user experience, durability, build quality, design, features and warranty periods.

Before we dive in deeper, it’s important to at least have a basic grasp of the different types of resistance found in exercise bikes and why we chose to only feature the most modern designs.


Introduction Part I: Different Drive & Resistance Types


When it comes to the mechanism of resistance on your exercise bike, the drive type makes all the difference in terms of the noise it produces, resistance, the feeling of the ride, maintenance hassle and reliability.

For the purpose of keeping this article as simple and straight forward as possible, you will mainly want to keep an eye out for the following two main drive types:

  • Chain-driven design
  • Belt-drive design

CHAIN-DRIVE:

Chain-driven designs have a few pros and cons, but this is one of the most popular types of transmissions.

Some of the pros include a more realistic riding experience and more linear resistance across different resistance levels, but the pros include regularly required maintenance and lubrication just like you would find on a real bicycle.

If doing maintenance is not your thing, and you don’t care about a “more realistic ride”, then we suggest to simply move on to the second most popular type of drive mechanism.

BELT-DRIVE:

Belt-driven designs are popular because they almost feel as realistic as chain-drives but without the maintenance hassle you will find on chain-drives.

In addition, they produce less vibration and noise, and unless you’re Lance Armstrong you’re probably not going to care anyway.

Belt-driven designs are built with user-friendliness in mind and won’t require you to do much if any maintenance at all which is the perfect turnkey solution!

If you wish to learn more about the different types of resistance and drive systems you can do so at LIVESTRONG. They have an awesome article explaining all of this.

See also: Spinning and you, what it means to your fitness goals


PART I: Best Exercise Bikes for Beginners


Alright, so here we are with Part I. The truth is, in this price-range, there are literally hundreds (if not thousands) of options for you to choose from that have essentially the same feature-set.

As we move up in price (and further into the article) the options begin diminishing, but the budget-conscious space of sub-$300 exercise bikes is quite flooded.

What we’ve done is hand-picked the top 5 exercise bikes for you plus one honourable mention based on overall customer satisfaction and the number of good reviews from consumers that each bike gets.

In addition, we have carefully hand-chosen each bike also based on our own personal expertise and 

knowledge and you’ll find the best possible options for you here based on those criteria.

As you will find below, in Part I, we feature only bikes with a belt-driven and magnetic design which means that this information is the most up-to-date available and will best suit your needs.

If you’re a cycling enthusiast requiring more resistance we recommend to skip this section and head down to Part II using the quick-navigation button below.

A training bike in that category will be sure to offer you a better experience if you’re a more advanced cycling enthusiast.


Let’s kick off Part I of this article and show you our top-pick for this category right off the bat right below. This is our Exerpeutic 1200 Folding Upright Bike and we think this is the best choice in this price-range.

Learn more by scrolling down. You will find the full outline of this bike below.

We hope you enjoy!


 

Exerpeutic 1200 Folding Upright Bike

Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike with Pulse
  • WEIGHT CAPACITY: Up to 300 lbs. Intended to be used on the hard flat floor.
  • SEATING COMFORT: Large seat cushion for people of any size, easily adjustable to fit anywhere from 5'3 inch to 6'1 inch users. HEART RATE: Hand Pulse Monitor
  • Please tighten the Screws/Bolts to avoid noise during pedaling;Fitness Goal:Increase Cardio, Lose Weight. The bike will fold to at least ½ the size as when fully assembled, so it is uniquely compact
  • COMPACT DESIGN: Folds for storage and can moved with the included transportation wheels
  • TENSION RESISTANCE: An 8 level Magnetic Tension control system, allows the user to adjust the tension level for an easier or more difficult workout. Refer to the manual for troubleshooting steps of Tension system malfunctioning.

In Part I of this article we will focus on the best exercise bikes under 300 bucks, and you will quickly learn about their features, what makes them so special and unique, and how you can benefit from owning one in your own home if space and time is important to you.

You won’t be training for any triathlons in this price-range, but you can definitely get something that is convenient, quick to stow away when not in use and can still provide a great workout for your cardio sessions.

Along with either a belt-driven or magnetic design, you will get EKG heart rate monitoring via the handlebars, speed, distance, time and scan monitoring via LCD panels, foldable designs, adjustable seat posts, and, in some cases, adjustable handlebars.

Let’s quickly dive in so you can get started learning all there is to know about exercise bikes in this price range.


#1: Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1002

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1002 49lb Flywheel Belt Drive Indoor Cycle Bike
  • STATIONARY EXERCISE BIKE: The sturdy steel frame and 275 maximum user weight gives this bike a rock solid build that will keep it moving ride after ride. Easily move the indoor cycle from room to room with the front-mounted transport wheels
  • RESISTANCE: The cycle bike trainer features a resistance system that gives you the experience of a realistic, real-road feeling. Make your workout more intense and burn more calories by cycling at a high resistance level
  • SILENT RIDE: Experience a smooth and quiet ride with the maintenance free belt drive system which allows you to workout without interrupting your workout or anyone around you. Seat Dimensions- 10.5L x 6.5W x 2.5H
  • CUSTOMIZABILITY: Adjust the seat vertically and horizontally. Handlebars move up and down to adapt to any user type. Height Max 40 in/ Min 29 in. Designed to keep your feet in place, these pedals are built with toe cages
  • WATER BOTTLE HOLDER: Stay hydrated throughout your workout. This convenient water bottle holder is built into the frame for easy access

As sort of an oddball in this price-range, the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-B1002 is not a folding treadmill, and it’s powered by a maintenance-free belt-drive design. The easily adjustable seat and handlebars make this a treat for users of many sizes.

As we move up in pricing, you will find that certain exercise bikes are more feature-packed than others, and this is why we chose this bike to be featured. You will be getting a fantastic bike made by a reputable manufacturer.

The 49lbs flywheel will ensure enough resistance for even the most seasoned of recreational cycling cardio enthusiasts and the ultra-padded seat will allow you to continue using the bike in the most comfortable fashion possible.

Key Features:

  • Amazon’s Choice Award Winner
  • There are thousands of excellent, positive reviews from big-box retailers and happy customers
  • Maintenance-Free belt-drive design for hands-off cycling ensures your continued enjoyment
  • Features front wheels for easy and effortless transportation between rooms
  • Fully adjustable seat (29 – 40 inch inseam) and handlebar
  • Seat moves up/down and forward/backward
  • Bottle holder can easily hold your favorite exercise beverage
  • Ultra-padded seat for continued comfort
  • 49lbs flywheel for great resistance – fully adjustable resistance selection
  • Top press-down braking for reliability
  • Dimensions: 44L x 20W x 44H
  • Weight Capacity: 275lbs
  • Warranty: 1-Year Frame, 90-Day Everything Else

 


#2: Exerpeutic 1200
Folding Exercise Bike

Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Exercise Bike with Pulse
  • WEIGHT CAPACITY: Up to 300 lbs. Intended to be used on the hard flat floor.
  • SEATING COMFORT: Large seat cushion for people of any size, easily adjustable to fit anywhere from 5'3 inch to 6'1 inch users. HEART RATE: Hand Pulse Monitor
  • Please tighten the Screws/Bolts to avoid noise during pedaling;Fitness Goal:Increase Cardio, Lose Weight. The bike will fold to at least ½ the size as when fully assembled, so it is uniquely compact
  • COMPACT DESIGN: Folds for storage and can moved with the included transportation wheels
  • TENSION RESISTANCE: An 8 level Magnetic Tension control system, allows the user to adjust the tension level for an easier or more difficult workout. Refer to the manual for troubleshooting steps of Tension system malfunctioning.

The Exerpeutic 1200 Folding Magnetic Exercise Bike is the perfect addition to your home cardio collection as it provides one of the most reliable, durable and comfortable rides in this price range. Thousands of happy consumers have raved about this product and you’ll find out why below.

Exerpeutic is known to make some pretty awesome exercise equipment, and the 1200 is no different. Featuring a 300lbs weight capacity, a 1-Year Limited Warranty, a large LCD display and a supremely comfortable, cushioned seat, this exercise bike has been a household favorite in 2017 and will continue to be in 2018.

In addition to the above, this bike has been Amazon’s #1 Bestseller in this price-range and that, quite simply, cannot be beat by any other choice in our list for 2018.

Key Features:

  • The Exerpeutic 1200 is Amazon’s #1 Bestselling Exercise Bike
  • Can be folded to half of its size for easy storage when not in use
  • Features a magnetic resistance system with 8 levels of resistance
  • The magnetic tension system allows for a no-maintenance experience
  • Features wheels for easy portability when not in use
  • Padded and adjustable seat for ultra-comfort and durability
  • 3.3 x 1.5 inch LCD display indicating distance, calories burned, time, speed, scan and heart rate
  • Dimensions: 31L x 19W x 46H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: 1-Year Limited

 


#3: Marcy NS-652
Foldable Exercise Bike

Marcy Foldable Exercise Bike with Adjustable Resistance for Cardio Workout and Strength Training NS-652
  • EXCELLENT CARDIO WORKOUT - The fat-blasting cardio offered by this exercise device is significant, as each pedal targets the quads, hamstrings, and glutes. Not only does it burn fat, but it also strengthens the leg's muscles, giving you well-toned legs
  • ADJUSTABLE RESISTANCE - This bicycle has a manually adjustable resistance that offers various degrees of exercises. With eight preset levels of magnetic resistance control, you can set to simulate various types of workouts depending on the resistance.
  • FOLDABLE - The exercise utility is designed to fold compactly with its advanced frame design that allows for easier storage and portability as it folds up, granting you more space at home. It also has rubberized foot based to prevent scratching and damage
  • EASY SCREEN INTERFACE -This unit comes with a LCD panel that shows different variables related to your workout - speed, distance, time, and calories burned. The interface is user-friendly, especially planning workout routines and monitoring your progress
  • HEAVY DUTY CONSTRUCTION - Made of 14 gauge, high-quality frame which boasts durability and surface resiliency, this bike has counterweighted pedals with adjustable foot straps and an adjustable foam padded seat for hassle-free cycling

The Marcy NS-652 Foldable Exercise Bike is by far one of our favorite exercise bikes in this price range due to the enormous amount of positive reviews from consumers. 

Along with many of the bikes in this category, the NS-652 has the ability to be easily folded and stowed away when not in use. However, what really separates this bike from the pack is its incredible 2-Year Frame warranty.

A great LCD panel lends itself to easily viewing information such as distance traveled and time, and the magnetic resistance design offers up 8 levels of resistance to suit your needs no matter your experience level.

Key Features:

  • Ability to be folded and easily stowed away when not in use
  • 8 levels of magnetic, manually adjustable resistance
  • LCD panel conveniently displays speed, distance, time and calories burned
  • Frame is made from 14 gauge steel for an ultra-durable design
  • Fully adjustable foam-padded seat for great comfort (up to 5 levels of height adjustment)
  • Dimensions: 32L x 18W x 42H (maximum)
  • Weight Capacity: 250lbs
  • Warranty: 2-Year Frame provided by IMPEX

 


#4: Exerpeutic Gold 500XL
Foldable Exercise Bike

Sale
Exerpeutic GOLD 500 XLS Foldable Upright Bike, 400 lbs
  • Heavy Duty and High Durability steel frame construction with up to 400 lbs weight capacity. 20% more steel than the Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike for more maximum performance.
  • An 8 level Magnetic Tension control system for an easier or more challenging workout.
  • Folds to 1/2 the size, so it is uniquely compact; Folded Dimensions: 26.4" L X 24.8" W X 57.5" H
  • Large comfortable seat cushion for people of any size, and easily adjustable to fit 5'1" to 6'5" user heights
  • An easy to read large computer LCD display that indicates calories burned, distance, time, speed, scan, pulse and odometer. Please refer user manual attached below for instructions and troubleshooting steps.

The Exerpeutic Gold 500XL is a fan-favorite in any big box retailer and has been enjoying fantastic user reviews! We originally weren’t going to include this bike as it’s similar to its sister – the Exerpeutic 1200 above – but we needed to throw this in the mix for you.

The V-Belt magnetic drive system is definitely going to deliver a no-hassle, no-maintenance and sound-free user experience for reliable comfort. You’re getting a more durable unit than the Exerpeutic 1200 from above with over 20% more steel making it also more reliable.

An extra-large cushioned seat provides continued comfort and the 8 levels of resistance keep you going at your maximum effort for as long as you want.

Key Features:

  • Features 20% more steel than the Exerpeutic 1200 above
  • Extra-large cushioned saddle for continued comfort during the longest rides
  • 8 levels of magnetic tension
  • Folds to half of its unfolded size and includes transportation wheels
  • LCD display indicating heart rate, distance, time, speed and calories burned
  • Dimensions: 39L x 48W x 52H
  • Weight Capacity: 400lbs
  • Warranty: 1-Year Limited Warranty

 


#5: ProGear 225
Foldable Exercise Bike

Sale
ProGear 225 Foldable Magnetic Upright Bike Heart Pulse
  • 220 lbs. Weight capacity. Heart Pulse sensors allow you to monitor your heart RATE
  • Compact folding design perfect for limited spaces or small apartments. Folded dimensions: 19" L x 17.5" w x 53" H
  • An 8 level magnetic tension control System. An easy to read computer LCD display indicates calories burned, distance, time, speed, Pulse and Scan
  • Ergonomic contoured seat cushion easily adjustable to fit 5'1 inch to 6' user heights
  • Dual transmission flywheel allows for higher resistance workout

The ProGear 225 Folding Magnetic Exercise Bike is definitely one of our favorites in this category and it’s a consumer favorite as well boasting a 4.5 average rating. This little bike is sure to deliver a top-notch cardio experience in the comfort of your home.

If you aren’t too sure about how much space you have this little bike might be perfect for you. Fully-assembled and set-up dimensions are 32L x 18W x 46H and folded just 19L x 18W x 53H so you can easily stow it away.

A dual transmission flywheel will be sure to deliver great resistance for even the most strenuous of workouts and the 1-Year Limited Warranty will back up this bike so you can enjoy your rides worry-free.

Key Features:

  • Space Saving design easily lets you fold it up and store it away when not in use
  • Great for spaces with limited space and small apartments/rooms
  • 8 levels of magnetic tension control
  • Dual transmission flywheel is better suited for more resistance
  • LCD display for easy tracking of distance, calories burned, time, speed, heart rate and scan
  • Easily adjustable and padded cushioned seat for extra comfort while riding
  • Dimensions: 32L x 18W x 46H
  • Weight Capacity: 220lbs
  • Warranty: 1-Year Limited Warranty

 


So we know we’ve wrapped this section up, but Physique Authority always provides our readers with a little extra for your pleasure. We therefore make special shout-outs to products we think you will love, hence our Honourable Mentions.

These products did not necessarily make our short-list because they feature a design that is either unusual or maybe something you’re not into, but we still think they’re worth you having a look at them!


Exerpeutic Workfit 1000 Folding Semi-Recumbent Desk Bike

Sale
Exerpeutic ExerWorK 1000 Fully Adjustable Desk Folding Exercise Bike with Pulse
  • Sliding Desktop: large fully adjustable desktop with tilt, forward, back, up and down adjustability for sitting or standing positions. 3 angle adjustments (0, 16 and 33 degrees), 5 height adjustments 41" up to 45". Storage Drawer. Arm rest. LCD Computer
  • Patented XBike Desk and Exercise Semi-Recumbent Bicycle. 2.5" Thick large AirSoft seat with extra comfort and adjustable to fit 5' 2" to 6' 3" user height
  • Weight capacity: 300 lbs. Semi-recumbent design for comfortable, effective workouts
  • Folds up for storage. The bike can still fold up when fully assembled, with a foot print of 21.3" L x 25.5" W
  • An 8 level Magnetic Tension control system allows the user to adjust the tension level for an easier or more difficult workout. The actual work surface is 24 inches (W) x 16 inches (H) and it can hold objects up to 44 pounds

With that said, we simply love this bike. It’s a semi-recumbent desk bike which means you can continue to work on your laptop or tablet while you’re exercising. What we love most, however, is that this bike can be transformed into a fully operational standing desk as well which is pretty awesome in our opinion!

Yet another Amazon’s Choice award winner this desk bike has been a fan and consumer favorite. The desktop slides in all directions and is fully adjustable with up to 3 angles 0, 16, and 33 degrees with 5 height adjustments.

Powered by 2xAAA batteries, featuring an LCD display to indicate your time, distance, speed, calories burned and heart rate, a cushioned AirSoft seat for ultra comfort, a comfortable back rest, 2 cup holders and 8 levels of magnetic resistance, this bike will deliver a supreme user experience.

You’re going to get a 300lbs weight capacity along with a 3-Year Limited Warranty which well-surpasses any other bike we’ve discussed thus far.


Well folks, that’s pretty much a wrap-up in terms of the best exercise bikes under 300. We think that you will definitely find useful information in Part II and III if you are more of an advanced cyclist.

Part I was more or less geared towards those requiring a basic cardio workout at home without having to spend a fortune, but those bikes are definitely not meant for the serious spinners and cycling enthusiasts.

Related: Cardio for Abs – Fitness Goals and You.

Why don’t we jump right into the next part so we can have a look at some exercise bikes for enthusiasts and more advanced riders.


Part II: Best Exercise Bikes For Intermediates


Alright so we’ve covered some of the more budget-friendly offers in Part I, and now it’s time to take an in-depth look at some indoor spin bikes that will offer you a lot more for your money.

What you will find in Part II are more features, more durable materials, more adjustability, more resistance levels, heavier flywheels, better warranties and a much better cycling experience if you are a more serious cyclist.

It goes without saying that if you’re willing to do a little more research and spend just a bit more money – maybe 100-200 bucks – that you can get something much better suited for slightly heavier and regular usage.

These bikes are also going to more closely resemble real road bikes, and they are, in our opinion, beautiful pieces of machinery that look and feel the part more closely.

Part II will aim at presenting you with the most current and up to date information regarding the best spin bikes in the $300 – $1000 price range. Let’s get started.



 

BodyCraft SPX

Bodycraft SPX Club Indoor Cycling Bike
  • Indoor training bike with heavy-duty steel frame and powder-coated paint
  • 46-pound precision flywheel is perimeter weighted for high inertia
  • German-made SKF sealed bearings and Hutchinson V-ribbed automotive belt
  • Micro-adjustable stainless-steel seat post; aluminum alloy pedals with toe straps
  • Top-quality Velo saddle; 300-pound capacity; measures 24 x 47 x 43 inches (W x H x D)

When considering spending anywhere from $300 to $1000 on an exercise bike, a few features are important to look out for. 

If you’re using the bike at home, you’ll want to make sure the bike features a belt-driven design not a chain-driven design. This will allow for a hassle-free, maintenance-free experience.

Chain designs are great for fitness gyms and clubs because they are the ones worrying about maintenance, not you! So let the gyms buy chain-designs.

We have made every concerted effort to only offer you up the best belt-driven spin bikes so that you can focus on the actual cycling and not have to worry about whether or not the following bikes feature a chain or a belt.

We do need to make one disclaimer here though. If you’re serious about your cycling, you maybe be someone that actually prefers a chain-driven design. Many people believe that chain-drives feel more “realistic” and some people actually don’t mind doing the maintenance to keep them running smooth.

However, we do not feature any chain-driven designs in our article this year to keep the ease-of-use high for as many people as possible. We hope you understand and we hope you enjoy the article regardless.


#1: Bladez Fitness Master GS

Sale
Bladez Fitness Master GS Indoor Cycle (D132)
  • Type: Indoor Cycling--. Resistance Type: Adjustable with brake--. Time Readout--Displays the amount of time that you have been riding..
  • Calories Burned Readout--Shows the number of energy calories that were burned.. Seat: Anatomically Designed Saddle with Two-Tone Design--. Model Number: Master GS.
  • Wheels--. Weight Capacity: 300 Pounds.

We love the Bladez Fitness Master GS because we believe it’s the best bang-for-your-buck mid-range exercise bike on the market. Coming in at around half of this price-range the massive 45lbs flywheel, LCD display, and belt-driven design will offer you cycling enjoyment for years to come.

Featuring wheels for easy moving and storage, this bike is also compatible with the Polar lineup of heart rate monitors. The saddle and handlebar easily lets itself be adjustable in 4 directions: up, down, forwards and backwards to suit any sized cyclist.

You’re also getting a 1-Year parts, wear items, labour and computer warranty which will keep you cycling with less down time.

Key Features:

  • Amazing mid-range exercise bike smack in the middle of our price range
  • Awesome massive 45lbs flywheel and belt-drive system for near-silent operation and is maintenance-free
  • Seat and handlebar can be adjusted up, down, forwards and backwards
  • Informational LCD display displays information such as heart rate, distance, speed, time etc.
  • This bike is compatible with the Polar lineup of heart rate monitors (sold separately)
  • One of our favorites in this list due to the price/value ratio
  • Dimensions: 48L x 20W x 47H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: Residential Only. Lifetime Frame. 1-Year Parts, Wear Items, Labour and Computer

#2: Phoenix 98623 Revolution Cycle Pro II

Phoenix 98623 Revolution Cycle Pro II Exercise Bike
  • Bio medically efficient design
  • Adjustments in saddle height and fore-aft seat positioning allow for maximum total tension and force-generating capabilities as well as a neutral knee position
  • Manufactured in United States
  • Modern exercise bike with direct-drive resistance system and 39.6-pound balanced flywheel
  • Direct-drive system lets the rider pedal forward or backward, with quick-stop handle brake

Our Phoenix 98623 Revolution Cycle Pro II features a heavy-duty 40lbs flywheel and a direct-drive resistance system for the ultimate workout. You are getting a tension control knob with up to 8 levels of resistance.

As this is another one of our favorite bikes, it didn’t quite make our Editor’s Top Pick but we still give this a 4/5 star rating due to its awesome price to value ratio.

What you will get is a fully adjustable saddle – forwards, backwards, up and down, front wheels for easy transportation and a heavy-duty braking system to keep you safe while you’re slowing down and cooling off.

The included water bottle holder and 8 levels of resistance are sure to deliver the ultimate user experience and joy.

Key Features:

  • Features a heavy 40lbs flywheel and a direct-drive resistance system
  • Tension knob lets you control the intensity you require – up to 8 resistance levels
  • Saddle is adjustable forwards, backwards, up and down
  • Front wheels for easy transportation
  • Heavy-duty braking system for extra safety
  • Water bottle holder included
  • Dimensions: 42L x 24W x 43H
  • Weight Capacity: 250lbs
  • Warranty: Available Upon Request from Phoenix

 


#3: L NOW LD577

Sale
L NOW Pro Indoor Cycle Trainer LD577- Exercise Bike Commercial Standard (Black)
  • Commercial Use: The LD-577 is designed for high frequency use, like in a fitness studio. It is built using robust components which provide much better quality than regular household bikes. This model is built to last and to perform.
  • The handlebar and seat are fully adjustable making it possible for people of all body types to work out comfortably. Each part of the two is made from high quality material to withstand high frequency commercial use.
  • Core: A 44-pound 1.14-inch-wide Heavy Duty Star Flywheel and body frame significantly enhances experience a near realistic bike ride whilst ensuring safety.
  • Large LCD Screen Monitor allows you to track your progress whilst you cycle. Real-time Digital console displays RPM, time, distance, heart rate and speed SIMULTANEOUSLY.
  • Heavy Duty and Comfortable: Soft and ergonomic PU Seat for longer periods of fitness training time. The supported weight is up to 350lbs. Find more highlights in product description. Assembly Required.

The L NOW LD577 is one heck of an indoor exercise bike – featuring a 50lbs and 1.14 inch thick flywheel this bike is going to deliver a near-realistic cycling experience right in your own home.

Reliable enough to be a fully-fledged gym bike, the belt-driven design is equally good enough to be used frequently at home due to its low-noise design.

The ability to clip in cleats is going to keep your ride even safer. The LCD display will indicate distance, time, heart rate, RPMs and speed which is easily visible.

Key Features:

  • Features a heavy-duty, 50lbs & 1.14 inch thick Star flywheel providing a near-realistic bike riding experience
  • Belt-driven design
  • Cleats can easily attach to the cranks (all included)
  • Made from heavy duty steel
  • LCD screen can track time, distance, heart rate, speed and RPM
  • All the different data are shown on-screen simultaneously for your convenience
  • This product is commercial-grade and therefore features extra-wide elements designed for more frequent and intense training sessions
  • Dimensions: 46L x 21W x 52H
  • Weight Capacity: 550lbs
  • Warranty: 1-Year Limited

 


#4: BodyCraft SPX

Bodycraft SPX Club Indoor Cycling Bike
  • Indoor training bike with heavy-duty steel frame and powder-coated paint
  • 46-pound precision flywheel is perimeter weighted for high inertia
  • German-made SKF sealed bearings and Hutchinson V-ribbed automotive belt
  • Micro-adjustable stainless-steel seat post; aluminum alloy pedals with toe straps
  • Top-quality Velo saddle; 300-pound capacity; measures 24 x 47 x 43 inches (W x H x D)

This is by far our favorite bike in this price-range. The BodyCraft SPX Indoor Exercise Bike is going to provide you with industry-leading build quality, design and construction and is a feature-rich bike for the money.

This is probably the best commercial-grade exercise bike coming in just under the upper limit of our price-category at the time this article was written. Featuring a 46lbs precision, perimeter-weighted flywheel, fully adjustable seat and handlebar and a gorgeously powder-coated finish, this bike is going to last you a long time.

You will also get the ability to add SPD pedals later on if you wish to use those, German-made SKF sealed bearings and a French automotive-grade V-ribbed belt for supreme reliability, comfort and safety.

Key Features:

  • This is our top-pick because of its immense value for the money
  • Extraordinary build quality, design and construction
  • Best commercial-grade exercise bike under $1000
  • Features a 46lbs precision flywheel and is perimeter weighted for constant tension
  • Seat is adjustable in 4 directions – up, down, back and forth
  • Handlebar is also full adjustable
  • SPD petals can be purchased separately
  • German-made SKF sealed bearings and a automotive grade V-ribbed belt for extreme comfort, reliability and low-noise
  • Beautifully powder-coated design
  • Perfectly suited for home use or commercial gym use
  • Dimensions: 43L x 24W x 47H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: Non-Commercial: Lifetime Frame, 5-Year Parts, 1-Year Wear Items & 2-Year Labour. Commercial: 10-Year Frame, 3-Year Parts, 90-Day Wear Items, 90-Day Labour

Related: How to select the best home exercise equipment for weight loss

 


#5: Sunny Health & Fitness ASUNA 6100 Sprinter

Sale
Sunny Health & Fitness Asuna 6100 Sprinter Cycle Exercise Bike - Magnetic Belt Rear Drive, 350lb Weight Capacity, Commercial Indoor Cycling Bike
  • Bikes with magnetic resistance never come in contact with the flywheel, resulting in silent, stable and virtually low maintenance experience. The closer the magnet the greater the resistance will be.
  • The right Q factor makes indoor cycles more bio-mechanically efficient by keeping the rider's hip, knee, and foot aligned. The Q factor of 176 mm makes this stationary cycle bike safe and efficient.
  • The patented high-grade aluminum safety post reduce weight, making it easy to adjust. Foot levelers eliminate shaking for a smoother ride while the push down brake brings the bike to an immediate stop
  • Use the tablet holder to watch a video/read. Track progress with LCD monitor (built in wireless pulse receiver with chest strap to monitor heart rate). Stay hydrated with the dual water bottle holder.
  • This 350 lb. high weight capacity cycle bike features an ergonomic, fully adjustable handlebar and seat allowing for multiple positions. Dual sided pedals fit SPD cleats and traditional fitness shoes.

You’re going to absolutely love the Sunny Health & Fitness ASUNA 6100 Sprinter Exercise Bike. Not only did it get very close to winning our Editor’s Top Pick Award – it also got very close to winning our hearts over with a full 5-star rating. 

The reason it didn’t win us over in terms of winning the Top Pick Award is because we felt like this bike doesn’t bring as much to the table as the SPX above. With a lighter flywheel weighing in at only 37lbs this bike is nonetheless an incredible deal for the money.

Like we said, if we could give out a Top Pick Award for more than one bike this one would have won the other award! We love it so much due to the high number of user reviews, incredible warranty and virtually unmatched build quality, design and reliability.

Key Features:

  • Another one of our favorite selections in this category
  • Features a silent operation with a 37lbs flywheel and belt-driven design
  • Mechanically adjustable resistance via knob
  • Dual-sided pedals fully compatible with cycling shoes so you can clip right in
  • Q-factor keeps your joints aligned for a safer and more comfortable ride
  • Heavy-duty aluminium seat post makes the saddle lightweight and easy to adjust
  • Fully adjustable saddle and handlebar can be adjusted back, forward, up and down
  • Includes tablet holder so you can stay up to date on all your favorite entertainment media while you ride
  • Progress is easy to track with the built-in LCD monitor displaying time, calories, and heart rate
  • Easy heart rate monitoring with the heart rate belt
  • Industry-leading warranty
  • Dimensions: 43L x 22W x 52H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: 5-year Frame, 180-Day Other Parts & Components
  • Warranty: Lifetime Frame & Motor Warranty, 5-year parts, 2-year labour Warranty

 


LifeCORE Fitness Assault Air Bike Trainer

Assault AirBike Classic, Black
  • Twenty Sealed Ball Bearings throughout the frame and pivot points to provide a smooth and durable feel
  • Unlimited Resistance for upper and lower body extremities based on Air Resistance; Get a complete Cross-Fit Workout
  • Computer features motivational programs providing many programs (Tabata, Intervals, Watts, Heart Rate) to accomplish your fitness goals
  • Maximum user weight: 350 pounds . Twenty Five inch diameter steel fan delivers maximum resistance, with six way adjustable seat fore and aft, up and down and tilt
  • Set a calorie, distance, or time target goal with the advanced computer display ; Integrated messaging to help inspire you keeps the workout fresh

The LifeCORE Fitness Assault Air Bike Trainer made our special selection for the Honourable Mention in this price range even though we really wanted to include it as a regular featured bike. What really separates this bike might surprise you so keep on reading to find out more!

We’re giving this bike a special place on our list this year because of the unique design and feature set you don’t normally see. You’re getting a fully-functioning fan that not only cools you down while you ride – it also provides infinite resistance to keep your workouts as challenging as you want!

It’s won Amazon’s Home Gift Guide award this year for the Christmas season 2017 and we’re super pumped about that. People have been loving this thing.

As you may know, we don’t rate our Honourable Mentions because we just put them on the list as we believe you may find them interesting.

The seat is fully adjustable – up, down, forwards and backwards, the bike itself features a 5-Year Frame & Parts Warranty and has a weight capacity of 400lbs and is sure to deliver the ultimate user experience right in your own home.

Learn more about the LifeCORE Fitness Assault Air Bike Trainer by clicking below.


Part III: Best Exercise Bikes For Advanced Riders


So we’re going to jump right in and get this next section started for you. When you decide to shell out over $1000 on an indoor exercise bike, we want to make sure you’re armed with all of the relevant and necessary information to help you make an informed decision.

What you will find in this price-range are professional-grade indoor training bikes that offer up features, build quality and warranties that cannot be even remotely rivaled by cheaper bikes.

We’re featuring bikes from the likes of Keiser, Life Fitness, Schwinn, L NOW and BodyCraft – and we believe these guys are the top manufacturers in this segment.

Deciding to spend so much on an exercise device is something you want to think very closely about, and we’d bet that many of you are already pretty familiar with exercise bikes in this price range.

We’re even sure that you have probably even heard about many of the bikes we feature here – and if you’re new to the professional cycling realm, we’re sure you’ll find everything you need to know in this in-depth guide and ultimately in Part III of our guide below.

Let’s get this started and show you everything you need to know about this price category.


 

Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle

Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle Bundle
  • Bundle includes: Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle, Media Tray, Stretch Pads, Floor Mat
  • Industry's First V-Shape Frame: Enables M3i to mimic different road-bike frames by allowing seat and handlebars to be raised in conjunction to adjust for riders of all sizes, from 4-foot-10 to 7-feet tall
  • Bluetooth-enabled Interactive Cycling: Riders can connect to the Keiser M Series app and train with real-time graphs for power and heart rate, cadence range dials, FTP zones and more for a limitless array of workouts
  • Durability and Beauty: Simple, elegant design makes the M3i extremely durable, virtually maintenance-free, and a sexy showpiece for your home or gym
  • Made in the USA: The M3i is ONLY indoor bike built in the United States, ensuring the tightest quality control

Many of these bikes are going to feature patented, ribbed belt-drive mechanisms with precision machined and balanced flywheels, German-made SKF bearings, advanced Eddy Current magnetic resistance and braking systems, fully adjustable handlebars and seats (with fore/aft adjustability), and heavy-duty, coated steel frames that protect from sweat, dust and rust.

In this price-segment we don’t offer our customary Honourable Mention and that’s because the bike we wanted to feature is no longer available anywhere that we could find. Giving you information regarding that particular bike is pointless.

However, if you’re interested, you’re going to find that the Keiser M3i’s predecessor – the M3 Plus – is almost as feature-rich as the M3i and if you can find it anywhere you can save yourself a few hundred dollars. We just didn’t include it here because we couldn’t find it, but we really wanted to include it at least by telling you about it.

We’ll kick this section off with the first bike below.


#1: Life Fitness Lifecycle GX

Life Fitness Lifecycle GX Group Exercise Bike with Console
  • Item may ship in more than one box and may arrive separately
  • Robotically welded steel frame with rust prevention e-coating helps protect frame and sensitive mechanisms from dirt, sweat and water
  • Dual-Magnetic Brake Resistance System allows user to gauge and repeat resistance
  • Multi-Ribbed Belt Drive with a magnetic eddy current for a smoother, quieter ride with less maintenance
  • Dual-sided SPD pedals for riders with soft sole shoes and for those wearing cycling shoes

By far, one of our favorite choices in our list this year, the Life Fitness LifeCycle GX comes with an incredible feature-set, warranty, design, functionality and user-reviews.

What you’re getting with this bike is unmatched build quality, a ribbed belt-drive design with eddy current magnetic resistance, a dual brake system, dual-sided SPD pedals with clip-in availability and an exceptional warranty.

In addition to the above, this bike offers a touch-screen LCD display indicating speed, distance, time and more. See below for the full feature-set. We love this bike – and we think you will too!

Key Features:

  • One of the best and one of our favorite bikes in our 2018 indoor cycling guide
  • Best-suited for heavy and repeated use
  • Features a robotically welded steel frame with a rust-preventative coating which protects from sweat, dust and dirt
  • Ribbed belt-driven design with magnetic eddy-current allows the smoothest and quietest ride available for an in-home bike
  • Dual brake system for added safety
  • Dual-sided SPD pedals with clip-ins available
  • Touch-screen LCD screen indicates speed, distance, time, resistance level, calories burned, heart rate
  • Handlebar and saddle are adjustable forwards, backwards, up and down
  • Dimensions: 55L x 23W x 40H
  • Warranty: 5-Year Frame, 2-Year Electrical & Mechanical Components, 6-Month Surface Treatments & Expendable Parts (Cover panel, chassis, bezel, faceplate, overlay, end caps, rechargeable battery, seat, grips, pedal straps, belts, handles and upholstery), 1-Year Labour

 


#2: Schwinn Fitness AC PERFORMANCE PLUS

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Schwinn Fitness AC PERFORMANCE PLUS with CARBON BLUE Belt Drive - Indoor Cycling Bike
  • Aluminum frame construction manufactured by Giant - provides rust-free performance and is significantly lighter than steel
  • 6-Magnet brake system allows for smooth, consistent control and provides maintenance-free resistance that won't wear or change over time
  • Virtual Contact Resistance Technology - the magnetic brake does not contact the flywheel, eliminating friction and wear
  • Belt drive using Carbon Blue technology for an authentic outdoor ride feel and virtually zero maintenance
  • Double link pedals with SPD and toe-clip combination. Lightweight performance handlebars with ErgoLoop, aero bars, and 12 degree incline enable multiple user positions and increased comfort levels

 

Although we still love this bike, we had to knock half of a star off of our rating because of the price-tag associated with this bike. As you know, we really aim to provide the best, most honest information for you and we just couldn’t give this the full 4 stars.

However, we still really do believe you’ll love the Schwinn Fitness AC PERFORMANCE PLUS.

We had to include this bike for you because of Schwinn’s status as one of the best exercise equipment manufacturers. One thing that really stood out to us is the fact that the frame of this bike is made by one of our editor’s favorite real bicycle manufacturers – Giant Bikes – who makes frames for major cycling manufacturers.

Backed by an absolutely immense 10-Year Frame warranty, featuring the ability to accommodate tiny riders from 4’11” to giant riders 6’8″, a 6-magnet braking system and handlebar that even tilts up to 12 degrees, this bike will suit any need you will ever have.

Key Features:

  • One of the most renowned indoor training bikes around
  • The aluminium frame on this bike is made by Giant – one of the most highly regarded real bicycle frame manufacturers
  • 6-Magnet braking system allows smooth and maintenance-free operation
  • Virtual Contact Resistance Technology – no touching parts means no friction and wear
  • Belt-driven system with Carbon Blue technology allows for the most authentic feeling ride available
  • Dual SPD pedals with toe-clip combination
  • Handlebar can be moved up or down; forwards or backwards; and can incline up to 12 degrees for the most customisable settings you prefer
  • Can accommodate riders from 4’11” – 6’8”
  • Dimensions: 50L x 21W x 51H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: 10-Year Frame, 2-Year Moving Parts, 1-Year Labour, 6-Month Wear Items (Saddle and Pedals)

 


#3: L NOW LD-501


What can we say. We absolutely love the L NOW LD-501. We actually love the entire L NOW lineup to be honest. Best of all – L NOW offers up some immense options and the pricing is usually just right as well. 

You’re going to get an awesome LCD display, a 55lbs bi-directional flywheel, a heavy-duty steel frame and a hydraulic rear shock system for continued comfort during your longest and most strenuous rides.

Packed with a 1-Year Limited Warranty, a 500lbs weight capacity and an automotive-grade patented belt-drive system, we’re almost certain you’ll love owning this bike as much as we loved checking it out! We’re giving this bike a well-deserved 4.5 star rating.

Key Features:

  • Features a fully adjustable seat and handlebar (with fore/aft adjustability)
  • Automotive-grade, patented belt-drive system offers up an incredibly smooth, quiet, and maintenance-free experience
  • Offers a hydraulic, shock-absorbent design for extended comfort
  • 55lbs bi-directional flywheel for immense resistance
  • Heavy-duty steel frame for durability and sturdiness
  • LCD screen displays your time, speed, calories burned, trip odometer, RPMs, heart rate and distance
  • Dimensions: 46L x 26W x 50H
  • Weight Capacity: 500lbs
  • Warranty: 1-Year Limited Warranty

#4: BodyCraft SPT-Mag

BodyCraft SPT-Mag Magnetic Club Group Cycle
  • Built and warranted for club Use, but also perfect for the in-home cyclist
  • Handlebar features multiple position hand grips including racing handles
  • RESISTANCE uses eddy current magnetic Technology designed to react to your demand
  • Saddle and handlebars are infinitely Adjustable fore/aft and vertically for a perfect fit
  • Belt drive for smooth, quiet, and maintenance-free performance

We already know what you’re thinking… we can hear it… “But Mike, why did the BodyCraft SPT-Mag get your prestigious 5-Star Rating but isn’t your Editor’s Top Pick Award Winner?” That’s a legitimate question and we are going to answer this the best we can below.

This is one of the best indoor cycling bikes you can get on the market today. What makes this even more intriguing is the price-point which is definitely lower than the Keiser M3i we’re going to discuss a little bit lower down in the article.

It’s for this reason that we had to award our highest rating to this bike, yet our top-pick to the Keiser. You’re getting some serious hardware and features here which we’ll discuss now.

Originally designed for club use, this is now a staple in the professional cyclist’s home gym because of the incredible price-to-feature ratio. We also definitely believe in our opinion that this is the most beautiful bike of them all!

You’re getting a precision, perimeter-weighted flywheel with German SKF bearings, a fully adjustable saddle and handlebar (with fore/aft), an Eddy current magnetic resistance design, a direct-drive Hutchinson Automotive-Grade Kevlar reinforced drive belt and an absolutely breath-taking, matte-black finish.

See the full feature-set below.

Key Features:

  • This indoor exercise bike is warranted for club (gym) use so you know you’re getting an amazing piece of machinery for home use
  • Frame is made out of heavy-duty steel with a double protective coat to protect from dirt, dust and sweat
  • Precision, perimeter-weighted flywheel with German-made SKF bearings
  • Fully adjustable (fore/aft) handlebar and saddle for finding the perfect riding position
  • Eddy-current magnetic resistance design controlled by a micro-adjusting knob
  • Direct drive maintenance-free Hutchinson Automotive grade Kevlar reinforced drive belt.
  • Beautiful matte-black finish makes this piece of hardware almost an art piece
  • Optional Components: Wide-comfort saddle, SPD clip-in pedals, LCD computer and heart-rate chest strap are all optional add-ons that can easily be purchased separately
  • Dimensions: 42L x 24W x 47H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: (Home-Use): Lifetime Frame, 5-Year Parts, 1-Year Wear Items, 2-Year Labour (Club-Use): 10-Year Frame, 3-Year Parts, 90-Day Wear Items, 90-Day Labour

Related: How renegade rolls can help the muscles in the back, including the trapezius, lats, and the rhomboids


#5: Keiser M3i

Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle Bundle
  • Bundle includes: Keiser M3i Indoor Cycle, Media Tray, Stretch Pads, Floor Mat
  • Industry's First V-Shape Frame: Enables M3i to mimic different road-bike frames by allowing seat and handlebars to be raised in conjunction to adjust for riders of all sizes, from 4-foot-10 to 7-feet tall
  • Bluetooth-enabled Interactive Cycling: Riders can connect to the Keiser M Series app and train with real-time graphs for power and heart rate, cadence range dials, FTP zones and more for a limitless array of workouts
  • Durability and Beauty: Simple, elegant design makes the M3i extremely durable, virtually maintenance-free, and a sexy showpiece for your home or gym
  • Made in the USA: The M3i is ONLY indoor bike built in the United States, ensuring the tightest quality control

This is it – the moment we’ve been waiting for. This is the crescendo of our top bike list for this year, and this is a well-deserved place for this very special Keiser M3i pro-grade indoor cycling bike. Let’s jump right in and learn everything there is to know about it.

Keiser started off the M3 series with, well, the M3, then the M3 Plus (as we mentioned in the introduction to this price-segment) and the M3i is the product of years of testing, trials and errors and user-feedback – and Keiser has answered.

The M3 series has been a staple in the cycling community but the original just couldn’t cut it in terms of certain features and functionality. The M3i has made all of the bad go away, and has brought in all of the stuff we wanted to see in the newest iteration!

Stuffed with features, let’s let the feature-set below do the talking so you can learn everything there is to know about it.

Key Features:

  • The M3 series by Keiser has been a staple in the industry and is loved by home users and gym-goers alike
  • Newest version of the M3 series (M3, M3 Plus and M3i)
  • Comes from a long line of reliable bikes and the Keiser series are club and home favorites
  • Smooth, moving-part-less belt-drive system for supreme quietness
  • Can easily be used at home at any time without disturbing anyone else
  • Rear-mounted lightweight flywheel (8 lbs)
  • Revolutionary Eddy current magnetic resistance system for maintenance-free operation
  • Fully adjustable seat – backwards, forwards, up and down
  • Fully adjustable handlebar – backwards, forwards, up and down
  • Comes with the ability to connect the Keiser M Series fitness app so you can upload your rides and compare them at a later date if you wish
  • “Holiday Bundle” includes the Polar H1 Wireless Heart Rate Monitoring system
  • Features a wireless Bluetooth display to showcase all important info – distance, time, speed, etc.
  • The computer can relay information to any screen and can also connect to your favorite wireless device (phone or tablet)
  • Features a water bottle holder
  • Wheels for easy transportation from room to room
  • Dimensions: 39L x 48W x 52H
  • Weight Capacity: 400lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year (excluding labour and wearable parts), 6-Month Wearable Parts (T-Handles, Pedal Cage, Pedal Straps, Saddle Upholstery)

 


Best Recumbent Exercise Bikes for 2018


#1: HCI Fitness PhysioCycle XT

HCI Fitness PhysioCycle XT Recumbent Bike with Arms
  • Walk-through design makes it easy to get on and off the machine
  • Pulse sensors on seat handlebars enable the user to monitor heart rate at all times
  • Pedals with adjustable straps for easy use and perfect
  • Transportation wheels for easy movement
  • Easy to read display shows: time, speed, distance, calories, heart rate and torque level

By far, one of our favorite choices in our list this year, the HCI Fitness PhysioCycle XT comes with an incredible feature-set, warranty, design, functionality and user-reviews. 

A half-star has been knocked off from our otherwise 4-star review based on the design. We definitely don’t think this is one of the best looking machines, but if you can look past that, there are many features to be desired here.

The robotically welded steel frame will deliver an exceptionally reliable and durable design allowing for repeated bouts of very strenuous riding sessions all with an amazing warranty backed by HCI fitness. Learn more below.

Key Features:

  • One of the most advanced pieces of machinery found in physiotherapy clinics as well
  • Walk-through design separates this machine from step-through models by making it very easy to mount and unmount the machine
  • 8 levels of magnetically controlled resistance
  • 7 built-in workout programs offer up great variety for your workouts
  • Contact heart rate monitoring on seat handlebar grips
  • Seat height is fully adjustable
  • Handlebars also spin around for upper body movement as well
  • Large LCD display makes tracking your fitness information an absolute breeze
  • HCI offers up some of the best customer service in the industry
  • Dimensions: 60L x 25W x 52H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: Lifetime Frame, 3-Year Parts, 1-Year Labour.

 


#2: Sole Fitness LCR Recumbent Bike

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3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike
  • Small and compact 49-inch length and 27-inch width
  • Seat frame slide adjustment making it possible to accommodate user heights between 5' and 6'4-inch
  • High quality construction with Lifetime frame and 7 year parts Warranty
  • Hand held Heart Rate contact sensors and included wireless Heart Rate strap
  • Narrow Q factor distance between pedals making for an extremely ergonomically correct ride

When we think of the best exercise equipment manufacturers around, a few come to mind including Sole Fitness. Their LCR Recumbent Bike is truly a functional piece of equipment and a piece of art, all in one package. 

However, we still really do believe you’ll love the Schwinn Fitness AC PERFORMANCE PLUS.

Not only will you get an incredible workout on this machine with the 10 program options available, you’ll look great while you’re on it as well. Best of all, this machine will look fantastic in your home.

Offering 40 levels of resistance and a massive LCD display, this bike will deliver an astounding workout experience for years to come. The Lifetime Frame Warranty will also ease your mind as you ride this thing on a daily basis and put it through its paces.

Key Features:

  • Awarded with a Best Buy award for this price range from various reviewers
  • Sole Fitness brings many many years of experience to the table
  • Sole equipment can be found in any gym across the world due to its incredible reliability as a brand
  • Focused at the commercial marketplace, with a beautiful, industrial design
  • The 40 resistance levels, adjustable seat and back rest and 30lbs flywheel will ensure continued reliability
  • 6 Standard programs, 2 Custom programs and 2 Hear rate programs ensure that you will always be exercising correctly
  • Large and detailed LCD display allow users to target their fitness goals without being side tracked by useless information
  • This machine comes mostly pre-assembled for one of the most easy set up experiences in this price class
  • Comes with built in fan, speakers and water bottle holder
  • Dimensions: 57L x 30W x 50H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: [Residential]: Lifetime Frame, 5-Year Electronics, 5-Year Parts, 2-Year Labour [Commercial]: Lifetime Frame, 3-Year Electronics, 3-Year Parts, 1-Year Labour

 


#3: 3G Cardio Elite Recumbent Bike

Cybex 750R Recumbent Exercise Bike
  • High-powered recumbent exercise bike with self-tensioning drive system
  • 20- to 900-watt power range accommodates beginning and advanced riders
  • 3 modes of operation, 21 total programs, and 21 resistance levels
  • Multi-position handlebars, proprietary ventilated seat, and extra-wide pedals
  • Supports up to 400 pounds; measures 25 x 49.5 x 63.5 inches (W x H x D)

We absolutely love the 3G Cardio Elite Recumbent Bike. This bike also comes from a highly reputable exercise equipment manufacturer and you’ll find out exactly why you will love this machine down below.

If you want a great recumbent bike for a great workout experience, but you don’t have tons of spare room, we think the Cardio Elite Recumbent Bike will fit that bill perfectly due to its exceptionally small footprint.

Not only do you get a highly adjustable seat, industry-leading warranties and a massive LCD display, you also get 12 built-in programs and 16 levels of controllable resistance for any experience level and we think those are the key features to look out for in an exercise bike.

Key Features:

  • One of our smallest offerings in this price range for this year for smaller spaces
  • Low height, step-through mounting and unmounting for ease of use
  • Front transport wheels and easy-lift handles at the back make it a breeze to store away when not in use
  • Large LCD allows access to your vital fitness information
  • Features 12 Built in Pre-Set Programs
  • 3 Built in heart rate programs
  • 4 user profiles for a highly customisable experience
  • Features 16 levels of resistance for all experience levels whether beginner or advanced
  • 25 different adjustability settings for your 3-way, multi position seat for extended comfort
  • Special Note: White-Glove Delivery & In-Home Installation are available
  • Dimensions: 49L x 27W x 43H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: [Residential]: Lifetime Frame, 7-year Parts, 1-Year In-Home Labour [Commercial]: 3-Year Parts, 1-Year Labour

 


#4: Fitnex R70 Recumbent Exercise Bike

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Fitnex R70 Recumbent Exercise Bike
  • Commercial grade recumbent exercise bike for your home with matrix/LED computer console
  • 16 levels of friction-free magnetic resistance
  • Tracks time, distance, speed, calories, and pulse rate; eight built-in programs
  • Contact heart rate sensors built into fixed handlebars on side of seat
  • 73 by 23-inch footprint; 400-pound weight capacity

What can we say here? Not many of any products we recommend are awarded with our highly-prestigious Editor’s 5-Star Rating and the reason we awarded the Fitnex R70 with this award will be obvious once you check out the full feature set below!

Thanks to its commercial-grade construction made out of high-density steel this bike will be the most durable on our list this year.

The massively oversized console can display tons of fitness tracking data at the same time and the 16 levels of resistance will deliver a Gold Standard level of adjustability.

However, what you will love most about this bike is the incredible Lifetime Frame Warranty for a headache-free user experience for years to come.

See the full feature-set below.

Key Features:

  • Commercial grade recumbent bike made from a solid steel frame for extended durability
  • 16 levels of magnetic resistance caters to any experience level
  • Massively-sized console indicates distance, time, sped, calories and heart rate and includes 8 built in exercise programs
  • EKG pulse grip heart rate monitoring handlebars included
  • Features fully adjustable seat and back rest support
  • Dimensions: 70L x 31W x 44H
  • Weight Capacity: 400lbs
  • Warranty: [Residential]: Lifetime Frame, 5-Year Parts, 1-Year Labour [Commercial]: Please contact FMIAmerica for details.

 


#5: Sole Fitness R92 Recumbent Bike

SOLE Fitness R92 Exercise Bike
  • Recumbent exercise bike with 2-degree inward design on foot pedals
  • Puts your body in correct posture while minimizing aches and pains
  • Padded, adjustable seat with supportive back; 20 resistance levels
  • 9-inch console display; 6 preset programs, 2 user programs, and 2 HR programs
  • 300-pound weight capacity; measures 30 x 50 x 57 inches (W x H x D)

Generally speaking, you can find Sole Fitness in all of our articles because they just offer up some of the best gear in gyms when it comes to exercise equipment. You will definitely love their R92 Recumbent Bike by Sole Fitness for sure.

Knowledge is everything in our opinion, and this massive 9″ LCD display will let you monitor all aspects of your fitness journey and where you are today compared to yesterday.

The Bluetooth connectivity seamlessly lets you connect to your favorite apps including Sole Fitness’s own app and MyFitnessPal.

You’ll also be offered a great set of speakers so you can listen to your favorite music, movies or shows while you are exercising making it a great option for that kind of thing. You will truly love this machine for all of its options and features.

Key Features:

  • Features a 14 position adjustable seat with highly supportive back rest for extended comfort
  • Large 9” LCD display allows you to keep track of all of your fitness information so you can stay on top of your fitness goals
  • Bluetooth connectivity allows seamless connections to your favorite workout apps including: the Sole Fitness app, Fitbit, iHealth, Record, Map My Fitness, MyFitnessPal and many others
  • Features 6 standard workout programs, 2 custom programs and 2 heart rate programs
  • Built-in speakers allow you to listen to your favorite music or vidoes
  • Cooling fan is also included along with wireless chest strap heart rate monitoring
  • Dimensions: 57L x 29W x 50H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: Lifetime Frame, 3-Year Parts, 1-Year Labour

So I know we’ve covered a lot of ground here, and we do apologize for all of the information overloads. If you want to go back and review any of the sections you can do so using our quick-navigation menu below.


Some key takeaways for this article will be the following:

  • There are 2 main types of drive systems: belt or chain
    • belt-driven indoor bikes are the best nowadays thanks to the quiet operation and maintenance-free usage
  • There are 2 types of resistance: magnetic or strap restance
    • magnetic resistance is the most modern design and allows your bike to be quieter and less down-time

Short Buyer’s Guide


So how can you determine what type of exercise bike is the best for you? 

There seems to be hundreds of different options across numerous manufacturers and it can be quite overwhelming to choose the right one.

We do have a major buying guide to help you choose a bike – but first let’s talk about how you can decide what type of exercise bike is the best for your personal needs.

You’re Just Not Sure What You Need: Keep Reading!


Well, you see, the reason it matters what type of spin bike you choose is because there are a variety of different kinds with a variety of different price tags attached as well.

Some common questions you can ask yourself would be:

  • How much money do I have to spend on an exercise bike?
  • How much space do I have in my exercise area (whether at home or anywhere else you’ll be putting it)?
  • How experienced am I at riding?
  • Will many other people be using the bike, or will it be just me?
  • Do I prefer to lay back (recumbent style) or sit upright (regular style)?
  • Would I like to be able to fold the bike up when it’s not in use?
  • Do I want to perform regular maintenance on the bike to keep it functioning or do I want to have a hassle-free experience?

There are a few other questions you might ask yourself and hopefully we’re going to help answer any questions you might have!


We’re not going to spend much time here because we’ve already written an article on how to choose an exercise bike for home usage in which we explain how your budget ultimately decides how many options you have.

You can go and read that article here if you’re interested in that. 

IN addition to that, it pretty much goes without saying that in any purchasing decision, the money you have available will determine what you can get.

Let’s move on.

How Much Space and Experience Do You Have, and How Many Others Will Use the Bike?


These are pretty important questions to ask. 

We’ll also keep this article quite short because there’s not much to it either.

SPACE:

If you have a very small space and you don’t have much experience, and not many others will use the bike, then something like a cheap folding exercise bike can do the trick for you.

This unit by Exerpeutic has over 5,000 4.5/5 star ratings across various online retailer websites and the quality truly speaks for itself.

It would be a good idea to only check that out if you’re just starting out and it’s going to be used maybe 2-3 times per week.

Whereas it doesn’t have the ability to act as a go-to bike for serious riders, that unit can serve your purposes quite well if you want to fold the unit when it’s not in use and save space in your small house or apartment!

For additional cheap folding options for beginners, feel free to browse our main article on how to choose an exercise bike including descriptions of top-notch options.

The bikes in that article will be upright bicycles such as the one depicted just underneath this sentence if you’re on a smartphone (or on the right hand side if you’re on a computer).

For information regarding recumbent bikes (ones you can lean back on) keep reading the article as we’ll cover that next.

EXPERIENCE:

If you’re relatively new to cycling you really won’t gain any benefit from more powerful or capable bikes, and we want you to just save your money if that’s the case.

For more advanced riders, you might have to spend a little bit more money on a higher quality unit with more resistance so you will actually be able to get the proper workout completed.

HOW MANY OTHERS USE IT?

If it’s just yourself using the bike 2-3 times per week, you’ll get away with a cheaper unit.

More frequent sessions or more vigorous sessions will demand a more quality unit, but it’s not too big of a deal if you’re not planning on training for a triathlon on your exercise bike!

Do You Prefer Recumbent (leaning-back) Bikes or Upright (standard-style) Bikes?


This is a pretty obvious question, but one that is mostly overlooked to be honest.

There are folding options for both upright bikes and recumbent bikes but it’s ultimately going to come down to your own personal preference.

No one can make that choice for you, nor is there any benefit of one over the other – this is 100% whatever you prefer.

You will still get high-quality machines if you choose the recumbent style, but overall, we personally prefer upright bikes for our own use.

RECUMBENT:

Most common benefits of a recumbent bike:

  • More comfortable, relaxed positioning
  • Less strain on your back
  • Less wrist strain
  • Less discomfort on your glutes and tailbone
  • Easier to get in and out of

The most important fact is that this is our own preference, and we won’t tell you that one is better than the other.


Check out this fantastic beginner’s video on recumbent bikes by Silver Sneakers on Youtube! <span data-mce-type=”bookmark” style=”display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;” class=”mce_SELRES_start”></span>

If this is something that’s of interest to you, you can learn more about the best recumbent bike options for this year here.

UPRIGHT BIKES:

Most common benefits of upright bikes:

  • Much more natural-feeling experience that more closely resembles real cycling
  • Higher engagement due to the more realistic positioning
  • Generally speaking, there are a handful more options when it comes to upright bikes
  • Certain models can take up less space in your home and can be more easily stored away when not in use

There are pros and cons to both recumbent and upright bikes and you’re just going to have to trust your own instinct on which one will suit your own needs best.

Let’s move on to the next part!

So, What’s the Best For You?


As Linus Sebastian from LinusTechTips (a highly popular technology YouTube Channel) likes to say:

IT DEPENDS!

It depends on everything we’ve discussed above.

If you want to lean back, grab yourself a recumbent bike and be as comfortable as it gets!

If you want realism, snap yourself up one of these amazing upright exercise bikes and pick your poison (or, you know, “health device…”) anyway…

…all bad jokes aside, we really hope this guide has helped you out in your quest to find the perfect cycling companion for your home!


 

FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions


QUESTION: Do I need to use some sort of a floor pad for my exercise bike?

It is generally recommended to add a floor pad to your exercise bike since sometimes the noise can be a little bit too much for comfort if you’re using your bike on a hardwood floor.

Additionally, placing your exercise bike on a carpet could potentially leave permanent imprints in your carpet which you might consider undesirable.

However, floor mats are not “absolutely necessary” if you don’t mind the above issues.


QUESTION: Are belt-drive bikes actually quieter than chain-drive bikes?

Although for the enthusiast cyclist who doesn’t mind extra noise and a more hands-on maintenance experience we would always recommend a chain-drive bike, belt-drive bikes are definitely quieter, smoother and have no maintenance albeit at the expense of providing a less-than-realistic cycling experience.


QUESTION: Are exercise bikes good for weight loss?

Although generally we recommend honing in on the calories you eat for weight loss, exercise bikes can be a great asset to also utilize if your goal is to lose fat.

Keep in mind that you will need to burn fewer calories than you eat to lose weight, and whether you use an exercise bike or any other piece of cardio equipment weight loss won’t happen unless you do the above.


QUESTION: Are more expensive exercise bikes worth the money?

It’s completely up to you to decide – if you’re a beginner or intermediate, a bike from about 300-700 should be great for you.

However, if you’re more advanced, and require specific needs, perhaps looking at the 700 dollar + range will be more suitable for you but only you can answer that question.

Generally, you get a few benefits the more expensive your bike is:

  • better warranties
  • higher quality craftsmanship
  • better service and support
  • a longer lasting machine

QUESTION: Are extended warranties worth it?

If you’re investing a significant amount of money ($500 or more) and plan on using your exercise bike more than 3-4 times per week, and you want it to last a long time, you can consider purchasing an extended warranty.

In general, if we’re planning on using our exercise gear heavily, and the machine is a pretty expensive cost, we’ll go ahead with the added warranties since it could be worth it for us – but again, only you can decide that!


QUESTION: How difficult is it to assemble your exercise bike?

Please keep in mind that assembly will differ between models, and it’s impossible for us to know every single piece of information surrounding this.

If you’re interested in finding out what models have what sort of assembly requirements, please head to the specific bike’s product page on either the manufacturer’s website or Amazon.com to find out how to assemble the bike in the Questions section (under reviews).

Generally speaking, however, exercise bike manufacturers have a lot of stiff competition, and for the most part they keep the assembly process pretty quick and easy, and oftentimes even include all the tools required to get the job done.

Rarely will you need additional help and in most cases the task can be completed within 2 hours with one single person.


QUESTION: Are recumbent bikes better than upright bikes?

This is all personal preference – of course upright bikes offer a more realistic cycling experience, however, recumbent bikes are also a fantastic option depending on if you value realism or if you value comfort more.

If you’re interested in learning about recumbent bikes, please feel free to head on over to our recumbent bikes list for this year!


QUESTION: Are exercise bikes safer than other types of exercise equipment?

Exercise bikes provide a very low-impact form of exercise unlike treadmills.

You aren’t repeatedly placing a lot of acute stress on your joints such as during running and we therefore believe that exercise bikes (especially recumbent bikes) offer a superb cardio experience for those wishing to place as little stress on your joints as possible.

Related: Best Weighted Vest Reviewed


Final Note:

If you have any questions regarding any of the information we have presented you with here or if you have discovered any errors, exercise bikes that are discontinued or you wish to share your thoughts, opinions or if you have any other questions, please use our Contact Form and we will be happy to answer anything you have to say!

Thank you so much for tuning in and we hope to see you again soon.

 


 

The Best Rowers for 2018

best-rowers-for-2018

Hi folks, and welcome to our Best Rowers for 2018 Buyer’s Guide. This is the fourth instalment in our Buyer’s Guide series, and if you haven’t had the chance, make sure to check out the rest of our Buyer’s Guides in the navigation menu above under “Buyer’s Guides”!

The last one we wrote was for Exercise Bikes which can be found here.

As always, we’re very excited you found us here and we’re going to dive in deep today with what is likely going to be one of our most in-depth and comprehensive guides thus far.

We’re very excited to offer up suggestions for a variety of rowers across 3 different price tiers. Under $500 will get you some entry-level gear; $500-$1000 will get you some great mid-range units and for above $1000 you will find the highest-quality, real-life simulating rowers on the market today.


For your viewing pleasure, you might also be interested in any one of our following other Buyer’s guides:


Let’s get started!



When it comes to rowing machines, unlike other types of fitness gear, there are way more options for resistance types than found for example on treadmills.

There are Four Main Types of Resistance:

    1. Hydraulic Piston Resistance
  1. Air Resistance
  2. Magnetic Resistance
  3. Water Resistance

It’s very important to determine what you will be doing with your rower, how intense your workouts will be and how much experience you have rowing.

For the beginner and home user, chances are you might want a magnetic flywheel design as you won’t need anything professional and you might be looking to keep the noise low. Air resistance also works great for this and generally adapts to your workout’s intensity.

Hydraulic piston type resistance is generally the most budget-conscious option out there and is somewhat similar to magnetic in that if offers low-noise operation.

For the more advanced user and the user looking to get the most rowing-like feel, water resistance offers just that – albeit at a significant price-premium.

In addition to this, you have to determine whether you are specifically training for rowing or if you’re just looking to get a rower for basic cardio training for Abs. Whatever the case, there’s an option for you.

You’ll also have to determine how much space you are working with and whether or not you are buying a rowing machine for home or commercial (club or gym) use.

Of course, cheaper rowers will not serve you if you’re a commercial gym owner and conversely, if you’re an in-home beginner user, buying a really expensive machine is almost a waste of money – unless you’re a professional or advanced rower.

The good news is that for beginner rowers looking to simply get a good workout, a rower in the under-$500 category will get you something really nice and functional for your purposes.

Some other, yet less important features to look out for would be:

  • Levels of resistance depending on skill/experience level
  • The size of the unit if you’re using it at home
  • Whether the seats are padded for added comfort
  • LCD consoles indicating important information
  • Noise – do you wish for your rower to be very quiet or you don’t care?
  • How far back does the seat travel – for the most part, you will be ok unless you’re literally seven feet tall

Part I: Best Rowers Under $500

Before we begin this section we want to briefly mention that there are numerous guides and reviews out there for most of the products we list below (in Part I) that somewhat have mixed reviews.

What these reviewers are failing to realise, however, is that most of the options below are very well-suited for the space-limited, budget-conscious and beginner rower user.

The reviewers are mostly comparing “cheaper” models to higher-end models which, in my mind, is not a fair comparison. Taking into consideration the price to performance ratio and “cheaper” models start becoming a whole not more interesting and desirable.

We never want you to spend more money than you have to on anything which is why we make these guides for you in the first place!

You really can’t beat the ability to fold up the device (in some cases) and the small footprint necessary for home usage (unless you have more space to spare).

We did our very best to only offer you what we believe are the very best options – but keep in mind that you will most certainly want to do a little bit more research on your own if you are unsure about any aspect of this article.

We want you to make the best decision for yourself – and we certainly won’t attempt to convince you to buy anything we don’t 100% stand behind!

With the disclaimer out of the way, why don’t we jump right in to explore our first price-range: Rowing Machines Under 500 dollars.



Stamina ATS Air Rower

Sale
Stamina ATS Air Rower 1399
  • EFFECTIVE CARDIOVASCULAR EXERCISE: Rowing on the Stamina ATS Air Rower 1399 helps burn calories, build total body strength and improve your hearth health.
  • DYNAMIC AIR RESISTANCE: One of the main benefits of air resistance is that it always matches your pace. Row harder if you desire more resistance and ease off if you want less.
  • LCD WORKOUT MONITOR: During your routine, track speed, distance, time and calories burned with the large, easy-to-read LCD display.
  • UPGRADED FEATURES: The upholstered, padded seat, adjustable footplates and padded rowing handle help keep you relaxed during your workouts. Built-in wheels and a folding frame make storage a breeze.
  • EASY ASSEMBLY: Once assembled, the rower is 77" long x 18" wide x 22" tall. Comes with three-year frame warranty and 90-day parts warranty.

As you will see, this price-range is pretty much dominated by two manufacturers: Sunny Health & Fitness and Stamina.

Both these manufacturers bring some awesome devices to the table and we’re mainly going to be focusing on these two makers considering the immense customer feedback and outrageous customer reviews.

As always, if you are confused about any aspect of this information or if you want to personally contact one of our editors for further information about the exact differences or which one we would recommend, you can always use our Contact Form below and we’d be more than happy to help out.

Alright so here we go – let’s get Part I started.


#1: Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rower

Sale
Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine with LCD Monitor by SF-RW5515
  • DIGITAL MONITOR - The large LCD console displays time, count, calories, total count, Scan. The convenient scan mode displays your progress to assist you in tracking all your fitness goals
  • FOAM GRIP HANDLEBARS - Help prevent calluses with the improved Sunny Health & Fitness Handle Bars. Non-Slip foam grip handlebars offer comfort while enduring those long rides. Slide rail inseam: 44 inch
  • NON-SLIP FOOT PEDALS - Textured non-slip foot pedals will ensure safe footing during the most demanding and vigorous workouts! Foot straps keep your feet saddled in so you can focus on the workout without feeling unbalanced
  • TRANSPORTATION WHEELS - Built in transportation wheels for easy portability. Simply tilt and roll out for use or away for storage, no need for heavy lifting or muscle strain. Folded Dimensions: 37L X 19W X 53. 5H inches
  • ADJUSTABLE RESISTANCE - With a simple twist, you can increase or decrease resistance, so your workout can remain challenging and effective throughout your fitness journey. 8 Resistance levels

The Sunny Health & Fitness  SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rower is currently Amazon’s Choice with over 600 very positive user reviews and is probably one of our favorite machines in this price range. We think you’ll like it too so check out the details below!

The SF-RW5515 features a magnetic flywheel resistance system making it more reliable and sturdy to use than any hydraulic-powered machine as described in the article introduction. You’ll be getting 8 resistance levels to keep your workouts challenging.

The large LCD console ensures you can monitor vital information regarding your calories and counts; the large padded seat and cushioned handlebars will ensure continued comfort and the transportation wheels will allow you to easily move and store the machine for a hassle-free experience.

Key Features:

  • Offers a bit of a step up from the SF-RW1205 featured below using magnetic resistance
  • The flywheel system adds a degree of reliability over the hydraulic system found in the RW1205
  • 8 levels of resistance control
  • Large LCD console shows time, calories burned, count, total count and scan
  • Padded seat and comfortable, non-slipping hand grips ensure continued comfort
  • Large, adjustable foot pedals with straps to keep you comfortable and safe
  • Transportation wheels included for easy moving and storage
  • Full-body movements ensures multiple muscle groups get hit equally including legs, glutes, arms, back and core
  • Resistance Type: Magnetic
  • Dimensions: 82L x 19W x 23H
  • Weight Capacity: 250lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year Structural and Frame, 90-Day Other Parts and Components

 


#2: Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 Hydraulic Rower

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 12 Adjustable Resistance Rowing Machine Rower w/ Digital Monitor
  • 12 levels of adjustable resistance
  • Comfortable, smooth running seat
  • Pivoting foot plates for added comfort
  • Adjustable foot straps. Not foldable
  • Electronic monitor displays time, count, total count, calories burned, scan

 

The Sunny Health & Fitness  SF-RW1205 Hydraulic Rower gets our highly prestigious 5-Star Rating because of its status as not only the cheapest piece of equipment in this whole article (averaging well under $100), but it is also one of the highest-reviewed products and offers, by far, the best bang-for-your-buck this year! Check it out below.

Offering up thousands of positive user reviews, 12 adjustable resistance levels, adjustable foot straps, ergonomically designed features and an electronic display, we think you will love using this machine – especially for the price.

You will also get a 220lbs weight capacity, a hydraulic cylinder powered resistance system (which is the cheapest you can get) and a pretty solid 3-Year Warranty on the frame and 90-Days on everything else. Check out the full feature-set below!

 

  • Cheapest rower you can find pretty much anywhere
  • A lot of bang for your buck
  • Extremely high number of positive user reviews on Amazon and all other retailers
  • Other professional critics also love this machine
  • Consistently Amazon’s Choice for best price to value ratio
  • 12 Adjustable resistance levels
  • Adjustable foot straps
  • Foot pedals can pivot for added comfort
  • Electronic display shows you your time, count, total count, calories and scan
  • Cushioned, non-slip handlebars for great comfort
  • Biomechanically and ergonomically engineered seat
  • You can target multiple muscle groups such as your legs, glutes, back, core and arms
  • Resistance Type: Hydraulic Cylinder
  • Dimensions: 53L x 20W x 22H
  • Weight Capacity: 220lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year Structural and Frame, 90-Day Other Parts and Components

 


#3: Stamina 1205 Precision Rower

Sale
Stamina 1205 Precision Rower
  • Precision rowing machine with deluxe ball-bearing rolling system
  • Smooth hydraulic cylinder action with adjustable tension controls
  • Multifunction fitness monitor tracks speed, distance, strokes, and more
  • Thick padded seat and pivoting footplates for maximum comfort
  • Measures 32.5 x 27.75 x 48 inches (W x H x D); weighs 47 pounds. Weight Capacity: Less than 250 pounds


Stamina continues to enjoy some of the highest-rated products in the Rower category, and the Stamina 1205 Precision Rower is another one of their highly-reviewed products. Thousands of happy customers and very high professional critical reviews make this a great choice for your next home rower purchase!

Although this is one of our favorite products in this price-range we have to point out a couple of things. As this is a hydraulic cylinder powered machine, we’re slightly disappointed with the higher-than-necessary price point – however, we wish to point out that this machine has one of the best warranties in this price range meaning that Stamina really stands behind their products!

We love the padded seat, the great quality ball-bearings and the fitness monitor to showcase your most important fitness tracking information. We also love that this is one of the smallest machines in this price range and we’re certain you will love owning this machine for years to come!

Key Features:

  • Precision rower with superb ball-bearing system
  • Hydraulic cylinder controlled resistance with adjustable resistance controls
  • Monitor will indicate fitness information such as calories, distance, speed, strokes and more
  • Padded seat, pivoting food pedals and comfortable handlebars ensure continued maximal comfort
  • One of the smallest machines in this price-range
  • Resistance Type: Hydraulic Cylinder
  • Dimensions: 48L x 33W x 28H
  • Weight Capacity: 250lbs
  • Warranty: 5-Year Frame, 90-Day Parts

 


#4: LifeSpan RW1000

LifeSpan RW1000 Indoor Rowing Machine
  • Features a smooth and quiet eddy current drive system with a 16.5-pound flywheel
  • Solid steel frame; assembled dimensions measure 90 x 18.5 x 23 inches (L x W x H)
  • Folds to 34 by 19 by 64 inches (L x W x H) for easy storage
  • Three-LCD console provides distance, calories, time, strokes, and strokes per minute workout feedback
  • 300-pound maximum user weight; five-year frame warranty, two-year parts warranty, and one-year labor warranty

The LifeSpan RW1000 Magnetic Rower offers up an impressive set of features along with a price-range leading warranty, excellent comfort and thousands of positive reviews. Let’s dive in so you can learn more.

In 2008, this machine was awarded with the Gear Awards Seal of Excellence award and has consistently been a top-awarded machine for the past decade since then. It’s still one of the top contenders in 2018 with over a decade of engineering having gone in to this product. We simply love that!

Along with its ability to be folded, the 2-AAA battery powered triple LCD console, its solid steel frame and 5 resistance levels, the RW1000 is powered by an Eddy Current magnetic resistance system which is patented and renowned for its reliability.

Key Features:

  • Smooth, quiet and maintenance-free eddy current magnetic flywheel resistance system with a 16.5lbs flywheel
  • 5 levels of resistance controlled by a conveniently placed knob
  • Solid steel frame for extreme durability and sturdiness
  • Folds up for very convenient and effortless storage
  • As this machine has been around for nearly a decade, it has really been refined and received the Gear Awards Seal of Excellence award in 2008
  • This product is still one of our top contenders in 2018!
  • Tripe LCD console provides feedback on distance, strokes, strokes per minute, calories, time and more
  • LCD console is powered by 2 AAA batteries meaning you don’t have to plug it in anywhere
  • Injected foam seat and padded hand grips allow for the most comfortable experience
  • Pivoting foot pedals and straps ensure stability and safety
  • Resistance Type: Magnetic Flywheel
  • Dimensions: 90L x 19W x 23H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: 5-Year Frame, 2-Year Parts, 1-Year Labour

 


#5: Stamina ATS Air Rower

Sale
Stamina ATS Air Rower 1399
  • EFFECTIVE CARDIOVASCULAR EXERCISE: Rowing on the Stamina ATS Air Rower 1399 helps burn calories, build total body strength and improve your hearth health.
  • DYNAMIC AIR RESISTANCE: One of the main benefits of air resistance is that it always matches your pace. Row harder if you desire more resistance and ease off if you want less.
  • LCD WORKOUT MONITOR: During your routine, track speed, distance, time and calories burned with the large, easy-to-read LCD display.
  • UPGRADED FEATURES: The upholstered, padded seat, adjustable footplates and padded rowing handle help keep you relaxed during your workouts. Built-in wheels and a folding frame make storage a breeze.
  • EASY ASSEMBLY: Once assembled, the rower is 77" long x 18" wide x 22" tall. Comes with three-year frame warranty and 90-day parts warranty.

With thousands of extremely happy customers, the Stamina ATS Air Rower enjoys an average of about an 80% score, or 4/5 stars across all major retailer websites. This machine is one of our favorite machines, and that’s the exact reason we’ve awarded it with our prestigious Editor’s Top Pick Award! We think you will love it so check it out below.

The air-resistance system ensures you’re getting as demanding a workout as you desire. By simply moving faster the resistance increases giving you virtually limitless resistance to keep your workouts fun and engaging.

The seat and handlebars are ergonomically designed and offer padding to keep you as comfortable as possible while you work out. This machine can easily fold and includes built-in wheels for effortless storage.

Key Features:

  • Our 2018 Editor’s Top Pick Award Winner in the price-range
  • Thousands of reviews over 4/5 stars
  • Critically-acclaimed machine with the census being at least an 80% rating
  • Offers a wind-resistance mechanism allowing the machine to adjust to your intensity levels automatically
  • The ATS Air Rower can fold and easily be stored anywhere you wish
  • Also includes built-in wheels for easy transport to its storage location
  • Multi-function performance monitor to keep track of your calories, count, total count and more
  • Seat and handlebars are padded for comfort and durability
  • Large foot pedals with straps for added safety
  • Resistance Type: Air
  • Dimensions: 77L x 18W x 22H
  • Weight Capacity: 250lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year Frame, 90-Day Parts

 


#6: Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5623 Air Rower

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5623 Air Rowing Machine Rower w/ LCD Monitor
  • Belt tension system with 8 levels of adjustable resistance
  • Air rower provides additional resistance from the integrated fan creating a dynamic response with every pull
  • Fully padded seat and non-slip grip handlebars provide optimal comfort and support
  • Large anti-slip foot pedals with adjustable foot straps for secure footing
  • Digital computer displays: time, count, calories, total count, and scan

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5623 offers up an extremely compelling option as a rower when considering that it’s powered by air resistance that adjusts to your needs automatically. We also love the padded seat and adjustable foot pedals and we think you will love it as well – especially considering its price-point.

With a price-point smack in the middle of this price range, the SF-RW5623 is yet another one of our favorite Sunny Health & Fitness rowers in this price range. 

Your digital display will offer readouts for all vital information including time, calories burned, count, total count, scan and more and the 3-Year Frame Warranty will ensure you get to enjoy this machine for years to come.

Key Features:

  • Belt-driven air resistance with 8 levels of resistance
  • The air resistance provides additional resistance from the integrated fan adjusting to your intensity level automatically
  • Padded seat and non-slip hand grips ensure comfort and safety
  • Large foot pedals are pivoting and feature adjustable foot straps
  • Digital display offers readouts for time, calories burned, count, total count and scan
  • Slide rail is made out of durable aluminium for continued reliability and durability
  • Resistance Type: Air
  • Dimensions: 86L x 19W x 28H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year Structural and Frame, 90-Day Other Parts and Components

 


So we’ve wrapped up Part I: Best Rowers Under $500 and, as you can see, there’s no compelling reason to spend more than this price-range if you’re just starting out. 

Although reliability and durability is questionable for heavy-use, beginners will be able to enjoy an awesome rowing experience for at least a few years. If you’re more advanced, the next two price ranges will definitely be more suitable for you.

Physique Authority’s mantra is to spend as much as your budget allows, within reason – meaning that you should always buy what you need. However, you should never spend more than you need to!

If you’re somebody that requires more power and durability, buying something cheaper than you need will just leave you more frustrated.

Let’s jump right in to Part II so you can get started checking that out.

Related: Best Ellipticals – 2018 buyer’s guide


Part II: Best Rowers From $500 – $1000

As mentioned above, spending a little bit more will get you a product of higher quality, durability and feature-sets. This might be important to you if you’re a more advanced athlete requiring a bit more power and regular, heavy usage.

Rowers in the $500-$1000 price range will offer you far superior qualities over their cheaper counterparts including a longer warranty generally, more adjustability and a more rich feature list.

Let’s jump in and get Part II started!


Before we get rolling here, we wanted to point out the machine below real quick. It’s our Editor’s Top Pick Award Winner and has been the highest-rated rowing machine in the world for a long time. 

Check out the Concept2 Model D below for more informaiton.


 

Concept2 Model D
“Highest-Rated Rower in the World”

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5
  • Low impact workout that engages all major muscle groups; work legs, core and arms with a smooth, high calorie-burning motion.
  • Track your progress with real-time reliable data; the Performance Monitor 5 (included) self-calibrates for comparable results; connect wirelessly to heart rate belts and apps (not included).
  • Designed to fit most users: 14-inch seat height, adjustable footrests and ergonomic handle.
  • Separates easily into two pieces for storage; caster wheels make it mobile; easy to assemble with only eight screws.
  • Space recommended for use is 9 x 4 feet; 500-pound user capacity; 5-year frame warranty included.

Since Part I has already set the expectations pretty high for what you will want to pay attention to, we’re going to waste no time and get rolling with the features that make rowers in this price range stand out from the cheaper competition.

A little bit further down into this section we’re featuring a great introduction to water resistance which really adds the feeling of a real-life rowing experience.

The hydraulic resistance systems have gone away in this price-range, and these machines come equipped mainly with magnetic and water resistance designs which we feel provides a more reliable and quality experience over hydraulic resistance.

Related: Benefits and drawbacks of spinning with exercise bikes


#1: Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower

Velocity Exercise Black Magnetic Rower
  • Resistance: DMC System (drum magnetic control)
  • Electronic tension control
  • Large PU molded saddle & foldable and space saving
  • The machine Comes equipped with a heart RATE monitor chest strap to monitor your heart RATE for intense cardio training
  • Beam: anodized aluminum profile + rectangular tubing support.The maximum weight capacity for the rower is 275lbs

The Velocity Exercise Magnetic Rower is one of the highest-rated rowers in this price-range, however, we had to knock off one full star off of our rating because the warranty that Velocity Exercise provides is only applicable to U.S. residents and we really dislike that. 

However, with that said, this machine is still a fantastic value and, if taken care of, will never need to be claimed under warranty anyway.

What you’re getting here is an awesome magnetic resistance system that will provide ample resistance as you become better at rowing and get into better shape.

The moulded and contoured padded seat adds a high level of comfort to your experience and the foldable design along with the built-in wheels will allow for seamless and easy storage and transport.

Learn more about the full feature-set below.

Key Features:

  • Offers up a fantastic magnetic resistance system
  • Electronic resistance control for convenience
  • Foldable design for easy storage and space-saving
  • Built-in transport wheels allow for easy moving
  • Moulded and padded seat for continued comfort
  • Features a large and easy-to-read LCD monitor so you can view your workout information such as time, heart rate and more
  • Comes with heart rate monitoring chest strap to review critical heart rate
  • Anodised aluminium frame construction offers up supreme reliability and durability
  • Resistance Type: Magnetic
  • Dimensions: 81L x 21W x 25H
  • Weight Capacity: 275lbs
  • Warranty: [U.S. Residents Only] 5-Year Frame, 90-Day LCD Monitor, 30-Day All Other Parts

 


#2: Stamina Avari Magnetic Rower

Avari A350-700 Stamina Programmable Magnetic Exercise Rower, 81" L x 20" W x 24.5" H, Black/Silver
  • 12 workout programs including 6 cardio Profiles, 1 Manual, 4 Custom user programs and 1 Heart rate program
  • Fitness monitor keeps you motivated by tracking time, count, distance, calories, strokes per minute, pulse and watt
  • Use the up and down arrows on the In Touch Fitness Monitor to adjust workout time and resistance on the fly
  • LCD backlit fitness monitor
  • Extruded aluminum rowing beam

The Stamina Avari Programmable Magnetic Rower offers up a laundry-list of features sure to leave you with nothing left to desire in your next home rowing machine. The folding design lets you easily store it away when not in use and the included transport wheels make it easy to move it to its storage location.

Keep your workouts as difficult as you want them to be with the Avari’s ability to match your workout to your target heart rate via the heart rate chest strap. 

What we don’t like very much

  • Folding the machine is not tool-less. It requires a bolt to be unscrewed which is not that inconvenient – but other machines do offer a tool-less folding design.
  • It’s kind of plain and ugly.

Key Features:

  • Magnetic resistance allows for very smooth and quiet operation
  • Foldable for easy and effortless storage
  • Heavy-duty steel frame for extreme reliability and durability
  • This machine offers a feature-rich experience
  • Its programmable design offers up 12 different workout programs: 6 cardio, 1 manual, 4 custom user programs and 1 heart rate program which adjusts the resistance based on your heart rate target
  • Includes wireless chest strap to easily monitor your heart rate
  • Padded seat and handles offers up a very comfortable rowing experience
  • Pivoting foot pedals with adjustable safety straps
  • Resistance Type: Magnetic
  • Dimensions: 81L x 20W x 25H
  • Weight Capacity: 275lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year Frame, 90-Day Parts

Related: The benefits of renegade rolls for your back, core and entire body


#3: HCI Fitness Prorower RX-750

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3G Cardio 80i Fold Flat Treadmill
  • It is the only Fold FlatTM Treadmill on the market built exclusively for runners.
  • It can fold flat to a height of just 9.75 inches and easily be rolled under the bed for storage.
  • It also can be folded vertically, and another set of wheels allows it to easily be pushed out of the way when not in use. Whether you're just trying to save space in your house, or really have very little room in your condo, this treadmill will go where no running treadmill has gone before.... under your bed! In addition to the convenience, the 3G Cardio 80i Fold FlatTM Treadmill also has a top quality design.
  • Fold Flat Dimensions: 74"x33"x9.75"
  • Fold Up Dimensions: 39"L x 33"W x 70"H

Get the most realistic experience in this price-range with the HCI Fitness Prorower RX-750 providing an affordable water resistance rowing machine you can use in your own home. The 2.5 – 4.5 gallon tank ensures maximal realism when it comes to water-powered indoor rowers.

The large LCD display will make viewing your vital fitness tracking a breeze so you can focus on the details while you exercise. A built-in heart rate monitor is included as well.

Warranty is quite standard at 3-Year Frame and 1-Year on pretty much everything else. We think you will love this machine because we sure do!

Key Features:

  • Awesome introduction to water-rowing at an affordable price for a more realistic rowing experience
  • 2.5 – 4.5 gallon water capacity
  • The hydro-power drive system is very smooth, quiet and provides an “on the water” experience
  • Very large, easy to read LCD display shows exercise time, distance, split time, calories and heart rate
  • Includes a built-in heart rate monitor
  • Resistance Type: Water
  • Dimensions: 78L x 22W x 20H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: 3-Year Frame, 1-Year Tank & Seals, 1-Year Non-Wear Mechanical Parts, 1-Year Non-Wearing Components

 


#4: First Degree Fitness Newport AR Water Rower

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This is our favorite rowing machine when it comes to the visual appeal. Initially, we were only going to award it 4 out of 5 stars, but based on user reviews, features and the looks, we gave it the extra half-star. We love it – and we’re sure you will as well!

Learn more below.

As with the HCI above, this water-based rower offers up an impressive feature list. What we love even more about this machine is the generally lower price to performance ratio to other similar machines.

Having consulted with rowing professionals, First Degree has been able to create and deliver one of the most impressive and realistic rowing experiences ever with their Newport AR water rower. Full feature-list below.

Key Features:

  • The water-based resistance system is slightly pricier than the unit above, but it seems to hold slightly more fluid
  • One of the most realistic water-resistance rowing experiences around in this price range
  • The harder you work out, the harder the workout gets with this water resistance design
  • Professional rowers have been consulted in the manufacturing of this machine to give you the most realistic experience
  • Critics and reviewers have had nothing but praise for this rower
  • Belt-driven mechanism offers a maintenance-free and noiseless design
  • Tank shell is made from durable polycarbonate with a triple bladed stainless steel paddle
  • Handy LCD display indicates time, distance, split timing, strokes per minute, calories burned and optional heart rate
  • The ergonomically designed handle and seat are made with maximal comfort in mind
  • Resistance Type: Water
  • Dimensions: 78L x 21W x 21H
  • Weight Capacity: 300lbs
  • Warranty: 5-Year Frame, 3-Year Tank & Seals, 2-Year Limited on Mechanical Components (non-wearing), 1-Year Limited on Wearing Parts

Related: Best home execrise equipment for weight loss


#5: Concept2 Model D

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5
  • Low impact workout that engages all major muscle groups; work legs, core and arms with a smooth, high calorie-burning motion.
  • Track your progress with real-time reliable data; the Performance Monitor 5 (included) self-calibrates for comparable results; connect wirelessly to heart rate belts and apps (not included).
  • Designed to fit most users: 14-inch seat height, adjustable footrests and ergonomic handle.
  • Separates easily into two pieces for storage; caster wheels make it mobile; easy to assemble with only eight screws.
  • Space recommended for use is 9 x 4 feet; 500-pound user capacity; 5-year frame warranty included.

Not only is this our Editor’s Top Pick Award Winner in this price-range, the Concept2 Model D is overall our Best Rower to Buy in 2018! The highest-rated and best-selling rowing machine in the world, this unit is endorsed by rowing professionals as their Gold-Standard for indoor rowing training. We love it – and so will you!

The Model D will blow your socks off with its price range, feature set and warranty periods – all while providing the ability to get a world-class rowing machine workout for under $1000. That’s just phenomenal in our minds.

You will be getting a magnetic flywheel resistance design allowing for silent and maintenance-free operation, the ability to be folded and stored away, built-in wheels for easy transport, and one of the industry’s leading LCD screens – Concept2’s very own Performance Monitor so you can track all of the most vital information.

Key Features:

  • Highest-rated rowing machine in the world
  • 5-Star Rating with over 1,550 reviews on many retailer websites
  • Recognised by professional competitive rowers as the Gold-Standard for indoor rowing training
  • Coming in at just under $1000, this machine is probably our top-pick for this entire article
  • Features a magnetic flywheel resistance controlled by the spiral damper
  • Minimal noise with supremely smooth feel
  • Can easily be folded for effortless storage
  • Built-in wheels allow for easy transport
  • Adjustable foot pedals and ergonomic handles ensure continued comfort
  • Features Concept2’s Performance Monitor 5 providing accurate, comparable data for every rowing session
  • Backlight increases visibility
  • You can plug in a USB thumb drive to store your data easily
  • Monitor your heart rate wirelessly for convenience
  • LCD panel can be adjusted to suit your height preferences
  • Resistance Type: Magnetic
  • Dimensions: 96L x 24W
  • Weight Capacity: 500lbs
  • Warranty: 5-Year Frame, 2-Year Electronics & Moving Parts

We really love all of the machines offered in Part II, especially the Newport AR Water Rower and the Concept2 Model D.

Offering up what are probably the best features that you will get in the $500-$1000 price-category, we really see little point in spending any more money on an indoor rowing machine.


Part III: Best Rowers Over $1000

We always want to make sure our readers and/or shoppers get the most out of their money which is why we would never recommend the most expensive rowing machine right out of the gate.

However, for the more advanced and professional users, there are some incredible machines for you below, most of which feature a water-based resistance design.

Why don’t we get started so you can learn more about Part III, and the next price-bracket. In case you aren’t interested, you can always jump back to the previous section using the quick navigation button below! We won’t be offended 🙂


 

First Degree Fitness E-520 Water Rower

First Degree Fitness Fluid Rower with Heart Rate Reception, E520 - Silver Bronze - Evolution Series
  • Height adjustable footplates
  • 6 pre-set workout programs
  • Water resistance
  • 20 fluid resistance levels
  • Weight capacity: 330 lbs.

When it comes to resistance type, water is by-far our favorite type for the professional rower looking to get an amazing, life-like experience in their home.

When you think about it, a rower would absolutely prefer to be, well, rowing… but come winter (especially in southwestern Ontario!) that will be impossible outdoors. We therefore like to stick to water-based resistance for the professional rower looking to train when they can’t get out on the water.

You’ll see machines from the likes of WaterRower, Concept2, BodyCraft and First Degree Fitness – and we think that you’ll love all of these machines!

Lastly, we had a really tough time deciding on “the best” in this price-range as these are more than likely going to be specific user-preference, and the reviews speak for themselves.

As always, we strongly urge you to do as much research as you can and read individual reviews so you can get a better idea of the best one for you. We did our best to curate what we believe to be the very best of the best, and without further ado, let’s begin.


#1: WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine

Water Rower Natural Rowing Machine in Ash Wood with S4 Monitor
  • Handcrafted rowing machine with "water flywheel" that replicates actual rowing feel
  • Flywheel sits in enclosed water tank to provide smooth, quiet, self-regulated resistance
  • Series 4 performance monitor tracks workout intensity, stroke rate, heart rate, and more
  • Solid ash and stained honey oak construction absorbs sound and vibration
  • Stores upright; measures 84 x 21 x 22 inches (W x H x D) and weighs 117 pounds

Made from absolutely stunning and treated wood, and featuring a second-to-none water resistance system, the WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine is the ultimate water rower for the rowing enthusiast or professional rower – all while being perfectly suitable for in-home use. We love it – and guarantee you will as well.

What sets this thing apart from any other rowing machine (with the exception of the other WaterRower below) is its gorgeously crafted wooden design. Speaking of the ultimate realistic rowing experience, the wood is sure to give you that extra bit of realism.

The Natural Rower has been handcrafted with solid ash and Honey Oak stain finished in Danish oil. Wood is known to be a fantastic sound-absorber, and for this reason this is probably also one of our top-recommended products. Choosing a Top Pick Award Winner was really challenging for this category to say the least.

Key Features:

  • Ash is an incredibly versatile and durable wood which means this machine will last you a long time
  • The wood has been sourced from ecologically sustainable wood sources only where tree growth exceeds removal by at least 200% so you can feel good about your purchase
  • With the maintenance-free and moving part-less design, this machine provides a zero-hassle guarantee
  • Paddles attached to a flywheel offer up a life-like experience
  • The home training DVD will offer up some excellent rowing resources for your exercise routine
  • Absolutely astonishing user reviews have offered this machine a 4.5 star rating across a variety of retailers from thousands of satisfied customers
  • The Series 4 Performance Monitor tracks your stroke rate, heart rate and much more
  • Can be set upright for easy and effortless storage
  • Resistance Type: Water
  • Dimensions: 84L x 21W x 22H
  • Weight Capacity: 1000lbs
  • Warranty: 5-Year Frame, 3-Year Components (with registration form only)

 


#2: WaterRower Oxbridge

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WaterRower Oxbridge Rowing Machine in Cherry with S4 Monitor
  • Handcrafted rowing machine with "water flywheel" that replicates actual rowing feel
  • Flywheel sits in enclosed water tank to provide smooth, quiet, self-regulated resistance
  • Series 4 performance monitor tracks workout intensity, stroke rate, heart rate, and more
  • Solid cherry wood construction absorbs sound and vibration; hand finished in Danish oil
  • Stores upright; measures 84 x 21 x 22 inches (W x H x D) and weighs 117 pounds

Building on the quality of the Natural Rower above, the WaterRower Oxbridge offers a similar set of features, albeit with a few key differentiating factors aside from the slightly different price-point. Dive in below to learn more.

In contrast to the Ash manufactured rower above, the Oxbridge features a beautifully hand-crafted cherry wood design also sourced from ecologically sustainable sources.

Everything else stays consistent with the WaterRower Natural Above and you are welcome to check out all of the features again above!

The only differentiating factor is the cherry wood used instead of ash – everything else is the exact same and we think that this piece of equipment deserved to be featured here as well. The Oxbridge and the Natural are two of our all-time favorite rowing machines in the $1000+ category – and we think you will absolutely love them both!

Key Features:

  • See the WaterRower Natural above
  • Cherry instead of Ash on the Oxbridge

 


#3: BodyCraft VR500

BodyCraft VR500 Commercial Rower
  • Easy to Read Black Mask LCD w/LED Backlit Display and Keys.
  • Electronically Controlled Air and Eddy Current Magnetic Resistance with 32 levels.
  • Ergonomically Correct Comfort Grip Aluminum Handlebar with 4 Button IR Remote Resistance Controls.
  • Deluxe Adjustable Heel Rest with Quick Adjust Foot Straps. Heavy Duty I-Beam Mono-Rail made with High Strength T13 Aluminum.
  • Easy Fold and Roll System with child safety lock. Folds for storage in less than 3 seconds.

It was a very tough decision to not feature the BodyCraft VR500 Commercial Rower as our Top Pick Award Winner for this price range. The Lifetime Frame Warranty and 7-Year Parts Warranty really separates this from the pack – albeit at a slight price-premium over the competitors above and below. We really do love this machine for everything it offers, however.

BodyCraft is known to make some of the best exercise equipment in the industry, and their VR500 rower is no different. Powered by Eddy Current magnetic resistance with up to 32 levels of resistance, this is a true enthusiast’s dream come true.

This is by far one of the most gorgeous machines in our list this year, and we think it’s here to stay for the foreseeable future. The backlit LCD display really makes it a breeze to see where your workout is at and the comfortable seat padding and wireless handlebar resistance adjustment buttons make this a true winner for home use and commercial use.

Key Features:

  • One of the only commercial-grade rowers in this price-range
  • Electronically-controlled eddy current magnetic resistance
  • 32 levels of electronically controlled resistance
  • High-grade T13 aluminium construction for supreme durability and build-quality
  • Offers an easy-fold and roll system for effortless storage when not in use
  • One of the most visually beautiful machines aside from the WaterRower machines
  • Backlit LCD display with keys offers a great way to view your exercise information on-the-go
  • Adjustable food pedals with straps for comfort and safety
  • One of the most reliable units in our guide for this year
  • Resistance Type: Eddy Current Magnetic
  • Dimensions: 99L x 20W x 39H
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Warranty: 2 Types: Residential: Lifetime Frame, 7-Year Parts, 1-Year Wear Items, 2-Year Labour. Commercial: 10-Year Frame, 3-Year Parts, 1-Year Wear Items & Labour

 


#4: First Degree Fitness E-520 Water Rower

First Degree Fitness Fluid Rower with Heart Rate Reception, E520 - Silver Bronze - Evolution Series
  • Height adjustable footplates
  • 6 pre-set workout programs
  • Water resistance
  • 20 fluid resistance levels
  • Weight capacity: 330 lbs.

First Degree Fitness E-520 offers up one of the most compelling rowers for enthusiasts and professionals alike. Crafted from only the highest-grade and most durable materials, offering up a second-to-none water resistance design, and the absolutely stunning blue, silver and black design will make sure that this machine will be a category favorite.

What you get here that’s different from anything else in this price-tier is the water resistance which enables you to get a near life-like rowing experience in your home. 

In addition, you get an industry-leading warranty with 10-Years on the frame, 20 levels of fluid resistance and a very comfortable and high-sitting “office-chair” type of seat that adds a great level of comfort and ease of use.

Key Features:

  • Patented, 20-level Variable Fluid Resistance to suit your fitness abilities
  • Resistance can be adjusted with a handle on the tank mid-stroke so you don’t have to stop your workout to adjust it
  • Belt-drive system ensures a smooth, quiet and maintenance-free experience
  • Performance LCD monitor ensures you can view all important information such as heart rate, distance, time and much more
  • The USB port allows you to transfer fitness data for later comparisons
  • USB compatibility with WebRanking, Fluid-Coach, WebRacing and much more
  • Heart rate receiver is standard and is compatible with all heart rate monitoring belts
  • Adjustable foot pedals allow for the most comfortable positioning and straps ensure your safety
  • Optional back-rest is also available for added comfort
  • All components are ergonomically and biomechanically engineered: seat, pedals and handle
  • Feet are rubberised for adhesion to smooth surfaces for a non-slip experience
  • Transport wheels allow for simple transport and storage
  • Resistance Type: Water
  • Dimensions: 78L x 21W
  • Weight Capacity: 330lbs
  • Warranty: 10-Year Frame, 3-Year Tank & Seals, 2-Year Monitor & Wear Items

 


#5: Concept2 Model E


Concept2 Model E really builds on the quality of the Model D, however, we definitely still recommend the Model D as our #1 rated rower ever made. You can learn more above. However, we believe that the Model E brings some more functionality to the table and you’ll find out exactly why below.

Featuring Concept2’s acclaimed Performance Monitor you can easily log and track all of your workout data, and even transfer the data to a USB thumb drive for later review. 

What we think you’ll love most about this machine, however, is the ability for it to be taken apart into two pieces of extremely effortless and easy storage when you don’t want to have it out. The ergonomically designed seat, foot pedals and handles will make this an even sweeter deal!

Key Features:

  • Features a chain-driven magnetic resistance design
  • Beautifully powder-coated to protect from dirt, dust, sweat and rust
  • The higher design allows those with poor mobility to step in and out of the machine much easier
  • Performance Monitor is what sets Concept2 rowers apart from the increasing competition
  • The most current Performance Monitor is the PM5 which is offered on the Model E
  • Its backlit design ensures easy readability and the PM5 itself offers the ability to compare data at a later date from different rowing sessions
  • USB compatibility ensures that you can store your workout data with ease
  • Wireless heart rate monitoring is also available
  • It can be easily taken apart into two pieces so you can store it when you don’t need it – no tools are required!
  • The adjustable foot pedals and ergonomic seat and handlebar will ensure that you continue to receive a comfortable experience
  • Resistance Type: Chain driven magnetic resistance
  • Dimensions: 96L x 24W
  • Weight Capacity: 500lbs
  • Warranty: 2-and-5-Year Limited Warranty (Click for detailed warranty information)

 


Well folks, this wraps up our best rowers for 2018 and we want to extend a huge thank-you for enduring our long winded Buyer’s Guides.

We make them for you, with our readers in mind and we genuinely do our best to only bring you what we believe are the best machines in each price-range.

However, we understand that there will be differences of opinion, as with anything, but we try to keep our own opinion out of the equation and take into consideration user and critic reviews for all of our exercise gear.

As you can see, there are many different rowers available on the market today, and we’re going to quickly skim over the most important takeaways down below. And, make sure to stay tuned for 2019 as well as we will be updating our guides ever year with the latest and greatest machines.


Some key takeaways for this article will be the following:

  • Rowers have 4 main resistance types: Hydraulic Cylinder, Water, Air and Magnetic
  • Water and magnetic offer the most reliable ad life-like rowing experience
  • For home use, water and Magnetic resistance types generally offer a noiseless experience for a more enjoyable row
  • You do not need to spend more than $500-$1000 on a quality machine unless you’re a skilled and experienced rowing professional or enthusiast
  • However, as with anything, spending slightly more on a machine will net you a higher quality machine with more features and better warranty periods.

Final Note:

If you have any questions regarding any of the information we have presented you with here or if you have discovered any errors, rowers that are discontinued or you wish to share your thoughts, opinions or if you have any other questions, please use our contact form and we will be happy to answer anything you have to say!

And, make sure to check out our other Buyer’s Guides:

Thank you so much for tuning in and we hope to see you again soon.