Fitness Technology

The Best Foldable Rowing Machines To Power Your Workouts Without Taking Up All Your Space

Photo: Getty Images/ Cavan Images
If you love to row but are tight on space, a foldable rowing machine may just be calling your name. Training at home is very ideal if you're the type of person who doesn't like to rush to and from the gym to work and everywhere else in between, but you've got to get your makeshift home gym set up first. One way to convert your space into your personal fitness sanctuary is with equipment like dumbbells, kettlebells, and a rowing machine.

Best foldable rowing machines at a glance

Believe it or not, rowing is a full-body workout that engages 86 percent of your muscles, in addition to the cardio benefits you'll be getting as you put in work. It's also a great option on the days when you want a quick, challenging workout (since you can control the amount of resistance used), or for the days when you need to sweat your sorrows away with a long, steady rowing session.

If a space limit has kept you from adding a row machine to your home gym, we've got news for you: Foldable rowing machines exist. Ahead, we've rounded up the best foldable rowing machines that will power you through your workouts—without taking up much room.

Shop the best foldable rowing machines

best foldable rowing machines
Best air-resistance: Echelon Row Connected Rowing Machine — $1,000.00

With an ergonomic seat and resistance controls directly on the handlebars to adjust the 32 different levels, this rowing machine will make it easy for you to row comfortably. There’s a foldable console with 90° swivel to hold your smart devices, like your phone or tablet, so you can stream live or on-demand classes from the Echelon app (membership required), or put on your favorite TV show or movie as you work out. rounded exercise routine.

Pros:

  • Handle bar resistance controls
  • Live and on-demand classes available through app
  • Bluetooth connectivity

Cons

  • No built-in screen

Type: Air-resistant flywheel | Resistance levels: 32 | Dimensions in use: 84″ x 21″ x 45″ | Dimensions folded: 40″ x 21″ x 60″ | Weight: 106.5 lbs | Weight capacity: 300 lbs

best foldable rowing machines
Best lightweight: Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5 Performance Monitor — $1,188.00

The Concept2 rowing machine can be found in most major gyms, and is one of the best rowers on the market. You’ll get real-time data as you row, thanks to the backlit performance monitor, and once you’re done, you can separate it into two pieces or fold it upright to store it. It only takes eight screws to assemble, and releases quickly thanks to a framelock mechanism. It has WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities, so you can connect to other fitness apps or your mobile devices.

Pros:

  • Built-in monitor tracks real time data
  • WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity
  • Easy to assemble, separates into two pieces for storage

Cons

  • Two D batteries required

Type: Air-resistant flywheel | Resistance levels: 10 | Dimensions in use: 96″ x 24″ X 14” | Dimensions folded: 25″ x 33″ x 54″ | Weight: 57.32 lbs | Weight capacity: 500 lbs

best foldable rowing machines
Best magnetic: Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine Rower with LCD Monitor — $249.00

On a budget and looking for a quality foldable rowing machine? It’s possible. Check out the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine that has over 13,000 reviews on Amazon. It features a digital monitor that displays your time, calories burned, and total count so you can track your progress. There’s also a dial to control the eight levels of magnetic resistance, and the handlebars and pedals are anti-slip to help you maintain your grip no matter how sweaty you get.

Pros:

  • Digital monitor tracks real time data
  • Floor stabilizers
  • Quiet

Cons

  • No Bluetooth or WiFI
  • Monitor is small

Type: Magnetic-resistant flywheel | Resistance levels: 8 | Dimensions in use: 89″ x 18.9″ X 23.6” | Dimensions folded: 43.3″ x 18.9″ x 52.4″ | Weight: 60.9 lbs | Weight capacity: 250 lbs

best foldable rowing machines
Best splurge: Hydrow Rower — $2,495.00

If you tend to get bored on cardio machines, you’ll enjoy the Hydrow Rower. It’s a sleek rowing machine, and the membership lets you take thousands of on-demand or live classes streamed from waterways around the world, solo or with the Hydrow community. This rower features a 22-inch touchscreen display with speakers, a drag mechanism that makes you feel as if you’re rowing on water, and a webbed strap that makes every stroke silent. And when you’re done with your workout, you can fold this rower and store it upright.

Pros:

  • Large touchscreen display
  • Sleek design
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Smooth and quiet

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Need to buy upright storage kit to store vertically

Type: Electromagnetic drag | Resistance levels: N/A | Dimensions in use: 86″ x 25″ X 47” | Dimensions folded: 25″ x 33″ x 86″ | Weight: 145 lbs | Weight capacity: 375 lbs

best foldable rowing machines
Best budget: MaxKare Rowing Machine — $199.00

With 16 different resistance levels, a multi-functional LCD screen, and a comfortable handle and seat, you’re never going to want to stop rowing. It has slip-resistant handlebars and an adjustment dial to help you customize your session to your fitness level. If you’re tight on space, the wheels on the front of the machine help you tilt and easily roll the machine out of the way.

Pros:

  • LCD screen
  • Soft and ergonomic seat cushion
  • Easy to assemble and move

Cons

  • Monitor is small
  • No Bluetooth

Type: Magnetic flywheel | Resistance levels: 16 | Dimensions in use: 76.4″ x 19.7″ X 42.3” | Dimensions folded: 37.4″ x 19.7″ x 42.3″ | Weight: N/A | Weight capacity: 243 lbs

best foldable rowing machine
Best smart: NordicTrack RW 900 Rower — $1,466.00

If you love a rowing machine with a view that’s also comfortable, this rower is for you. It has a 22-inch HD display that’s adjustable so you can see the screen both on and off the machine, and 26 digital resistance levels. It comes with a 30-day iFit membership, which allows you to stream on-demand and live workouts let by an iFit trainer who automatically adjusts your resistance in each workout. You can also manually adjust the air resistance or connect your headphones via Bluetooth headphone connectivity. Translation: All you have to do is focus on your rowing technique.

Pros:

  • 22″ rotating touchscreen display
  • Sound system
  • 26 digital resistance levels
  • Oversized, pivoting pedals

Cons

  • Heavy
  • No on/off switch, have to unplug the machine
  • No general Bluetooth connectivity

Type: Magnetic and air-resistant flywheel | Resistance levels: 26 | Dimensions in use: 86.5″ x 22″ X 50.4” | Dimensions folded: 37.4″ x 19.7″ x 42.3″ | Weight: 130.6 lbs | Weight capacity: 250 lbs

best foldable rowing machine
Best basic: Echanfit Magnetic Rowing Machine — $330.00

If you’re on the hunt for a rowing machine that gets the basics done, the Echanfit rowing machine delivers. It has a mobile device holder and an adjustable-angle LCD screen that displays time, distance, calories, count, total count, and RPM. The dial controls 16 levels of resistance, an ergonomic seat, and large pedals. The foldable design is easy to use—a quick-release pin locks and unlocks the frame so you can store it upright.

Pros:

  • LCD monitor
  • Floor stabilizers
  • Easy to fold and move

Cons

  • Two AAA batteries required
  • Monitor is small
  • No Bluetooth

Type: Magnetic flywheel | Resistance levels: 16 | Dimensions in use: 74.8″ x 19.29″ X 34.06” | Dimensions folded: N/A | Weight: 56.55 lbs | Weight capacity: 350 lbs

Sunny Health & Fitness Phantom Hydro Water Rowing Machine
Best water: Sunny Health & Fitness Phantom Hydro Water Rowing Machine — $538.00

If you like the idea of rowing on water, this rowing machine may be the next best thing. With 16 hydro blades and a 60° angle water tank, you’ll get the satisfaction of pulling against water (and seeing and hearing it swirl in front of you). The machine has device holder and a swivel monitor that displays time, distance, strokes, total strokes, SPM, time/500m, calories, calendar, and more. There’s a wide padded seat and bottle holder, and the machine has an upright foldable design for easy storage.

Pros:

  • LCD monitor
  • Sturdy frame
  • Quiet and smooth

Cons

  • Two AAA batteries required
  • Need to add or subtract water to adjust resistance
  • No Bluetooth

Type: Water resistance | Resistance levels: 7 | Dimensions in use: 81.5″ x 21.25″ X 39.5” | Dimensions folded: 43″ x 21.25″ x 51″ | Weight: 88.2 lbs | Weight capacity: 300 lbs

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