Our reviewers evaluate products and services based on unbiased research. Top Consumer Reviews may earn money when you click on a link. Learn more about our process.

Concept2 vs Sunny Health & Fitness

Thursday, July 18th

2024 Rowing Machine Reviews

Concept2 Review 4.5 Star Rating


4.5 Star Rating
  • Rower Type: Air resistance
  • Price Range: $990 to $1,375
  • Different Models: 3
  • Financing Available: No
  • Return Policy: 30 days, shipping not included
  • Warranty: 5 years for frame, 2 years for parts
  • Shipping: $55-105 in lower 48 United States, higher elsewhere

Concept2 is a well-known brand in the indoor rowing industry, having been around since 1981. They provide indoor rowing machines that are popular with athletes across various disciplines because of their comprehensive workout. Concept2's RowErg Finder allows you to try their machines before you buy by inputting your location and discovering nearby Concept2 equipment. They offer three models of air resistance rowing machines that you can adjust the airflow by using the damper on the side of the flywheel. Concept2's Performance Monitor provides real-time feedback on your performance and accumulates data over multiple sessions. The ErgData app by Concept2 is a comprehensive training and analysis tool that allows users to dive deep into their performance. Concept2's return policy is very reasonable and they offer a 5-year warranty on frames and 2 years on parts. Overall, Concept2 has solidified its place as the #1 choice in the world of indoor rowing, thanks to their long history and diverse machine options.

Sunny Health & Fitness Review 3 Star Rating

Sunny Health & Fitness

3 Star Rating
  • Rower Type: All types
  • Price Range: $119 to $899.99
  • Different Models: 30
  • Financing Available: No
  • Return Policy: 30 days
  • Warranty: 3 years frame, 180 days parts and components
  • Shipping: Free

Sunny Health & Fitness is a budget-friendly brand known for providing quality exercise equipment, including 30 different types of rowing machines. Their rowers come in various resistance types, from magnetic to combination fan/air. Their most popular magnetic rowing machine costs only $249.98 and has eight dial-adjustable resistance levels and an LCD monitor. Sunny Health & Fitness also offers a versatile workout app, SunnyFit, which has over a thousand workouts. The brand is accredited by the BBB and has earned an "A+" rating. Overall, Sunny Health & Fitness is a decent choice for novice rowers looking for affordable cardio machines for their home gym.

Where Can You Find the Best Rowing Machines?

Rowing machines, or "rowers," have swiftly sailed into the mainstream fitness world, gaining traction as a one-stop solution for a comprehensive workout. They're not just about the sport of rowing anymore; they're about sculpting your body, boosting your cardio, and getting fit in a fun way. Rowing machines provide an all-in-one workout, working the legs, back, arms, and core.

So it should come as no surprise that rowing machines have become so popular. With rowing, you can elevate your heart rate and improve endurance without stepping outside. What's more, rowing is gentle on your knees and joints, thanks to the smooth motion and the seated position. The resistance can be adjusted to tailor the session - amp up the intensity for a challenge or keep it light and steady.

The Best Rowing Machines Compare Rowing Machines Compare Rowing Machine Reviews What are the best Rowing Machines Best Rowing Machine Reviews

Rowing Machine FAQ

There are four basic types, all classified by the type of resistance they provide. The rowers you may have seen at your local gym, CrossFit box or Orangetheory studio probably used flywheel or water resistance. Other rowing machines use magnetic or piston/cylinder resistance mechanisms.
Absolutely! Rowing machines use up to 85% of your body, from the effort it takes to push backwards to the core strength needed to go back and forth and, of course, all of the upper body in the pull. Like any new exercise routine, you may find there's a learning curve to developing proper form, but it's one of the best low-impact workouts you can get.
Yes! There are many workouts designed for all levels of fitness, including yours. You can also find communities that share rowing challenges -even worldwide! This is especially true if you use a Concept2 rower, which is considered as the "gold standard" when entering competitive times for races and recruiting.
Sometimes, depending on the model you select and how many features it offers. You'll see rowers ranging from under $300 to over $2500. You might be able to get low-interest financing from the retailer of the rowing machine you select.
Most styles will have a certain minimum floor space when in use: you're pushing yourself back and forth along a track, so think about how long your legs extend from a bent position to a fully-extended one. However, if space is an issue, there are rowing machines that can be folded up when not in use (usually by placing the track in a vertical position).
Most retailers of Rowing Machines offer a return period of at least 30 days. But, keep in mind that you're usually going to be on the hook for return shipping fees, which can get expensive.
Some rowers are delivered for free. Don't be surprised to see shipping costs upwards of $130, though: rowing machines are oversized and heavy.
Generally speaking, you'll be the one setting up your rower. A few retailers might be able to connect you with a local professional who can do it for you, but you might want to try it yourself first. These machines are typically straightforward to get up and rowing.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

What are the different styles of rowing machines? Rowers come equipped with a variety of resistance types, each offering a distinct rowing experience. Each type caters to different preferences in terms of workout dynamics, noise levels, and maintenance needs.

  • Air (flywheel) resistance uses a spinning fan, and the intensity grows as you row harder, although it can be a tad noisy.
  • Magnetic resistance, on the other hand, employs magnets, allowing for a quieter, smoother row where resistance is manually adjusted and stays consistent regardless of how fast you row.
  • Machines with pistons or hydraulic cylinders create resistance through air or fluid-filled components, making them more compact and often more affordable, but they might not mimic the traditional rowing feel as closely.
  • Finally, water resistance models, featuring paddles moving through a water tank, will give you an experience closest to actual rowing, including the calming sound of water, but they're typically heavier due to the water component.

Are you seeking the ideal rowing machine for your personal gym space? Here's what you should consider as you shop:

  • Budget. Rower prices span a broad spectrum. While the high-end models (exceeding $2,500) boast state-of-the-art features, you can snag a reliable machine for under $300. No need to splurge to ensure a solid workout session.
  • Features. Think about what you really want in a rower. Is space-saving important? Do you want the ability to join real-time classes, akin to Peloton? Or maybe the aesthetic matters, with the machine's look needing to mesh with your existing gym equipment?
  • Return policy and warranty. Be future-ready. If your chosen rower isn't the right fit for your space or if you end up wanting a different resistance type, can you send it back? Beware of potential hidden costs like restocking or return shipping charges. Moreover, get clarity on the warranty - what's covered, from the frame to electronics?
  • Company credibility. Dig into user feedback. What's the buzz about the brand? Will they step up if challenges arise during shipment, setup, or regular use? Given that a rowing machine isn't a trivial expense, you want to ensure you're placing your trust in the right hands.

If you're looking for a comprehensive breakdown of the top machines on the market, Top Consumer Reviews is the right place to be. We hope these ranked reviews will help steer you toward a rowing machine that aligns with your fitness aspirations!

The Best Reviews of Rowing Machines