Best Rowing Machines Under £500 In The UK – Top Deals

Row Into Shape On A Budget With These Top Rowing Machines On The Market For Less Than £500

Rowing machines are efficient exercise gears. Not many machines can provide a full-body workout with minimal impact on the joints; it is no wonder they are in “hot demand” in the UK. But here’s the catch, these machines can be pricey and out of reach for budget-conscious individuals. But not to worry, you can still buy the best rowing machines under £500 in the UK, isn’t that amazing?

Considering how valuable rowing machines are, it would absolutely suck to have to break the bank to purchase one. Fortunately, there is an array of rowing machines that you can cop for a decent price – for under £500 to be exact. And if you are worried about the value, you should know that “cheap” is not always synonymous to “substandard.” Some of these budget rowers are just as high-quality as so-called high-end rowers. Hence you can buy the best rower for under 500 pounds in the UK with absolutely no worries.

However, you will need a guide to point you in the right direction because a blind purchase might earn you the wrong results. So how do you identify a high-quality budget rowing machine? What are the features you need to consider before buying one? Basically, how do you buy the best of the bunch within this price range? The answers and more are provided in this under £500 rowing machines in the UK review. So read this guide judiciously and be on your way to purchasing the budget rowing machine of your dreams.

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Top 10 Best Rowing Machines Under £500

Circuit Fitness 167 Hydro Rower

Water rowing just got better with the Circuit Fitness water rower. One of the best rowing machines in the UK, here is a rower that brings the authentic and pleasant sensation of “on-board water rowing” right into your home. This water rowing machine works with a powerful water resistance that is akin to that found in a water body. Thus, it provides a true to life rowing experience.

Resistance is defined by the user’s pull; this means that the faster the user rows, the higher the resistance and the better the workout. How cool is that? What more, you can keep tabs on your performance through the LCD monitor which records time spent, calories burned, and distance covered to mention but a few.

Judging by the powerful resistance, it is expected that workouts will be vigorous and prolonged with the Circuit rower. Hence the manufacturers made sure the seats and handles are ergonomically designed and comfortable; the grooved seat is foam padded, and the handle is sweat-proof.

To further maximize comfort, the foot pedals are large and are attached to safety loops that ensure your feet won’t accidentally slip off during intense rowing sessions. And when you are all “worked out” and done, you can wheel the rower and store vertically to minimize footprint and save space. How amazing! Definitely one of the best budget home rowers under £500 in Britain.


  • Easy to set up
  • Smooth rowing motion
  • Well-built and sturdy
  • Good user weight support; up to 300 lbs


  • Foot pedals are not adequately adjustable
  • LCD Monitor is pretty basic

JLL Ventus 2 Air Resistance Rowing Machine

With its eye-catching design and noteworthy features, this air rowing machine is a “fave” among fitness enthusiasts and one of the best budget rowing machines in Britain. If you are looking for one of the best air rowing machines under £500 in the UK, you just found one, congratulations!

One feature that is noteworthy in this rower is the dual adjustable 8-level, air and magnetic resistance combo. This equates to a more power-packed resistance. The flywheel sucks up more air and provides better resistance with increasing rowing pace. And the aluminum sliding rail makes this effect more profound; providing a smooth rowing feel. However, the slide rail is not long enough for taller people.

The adjustable LCD console is also at the top of its game as it provides additional data display beyond the traditional ones. You can track temperature readings and check time and date with the clock and calendar functions. It is also equipped with a device holder for workout entertainment and convenience.

Rowing is made comfortable with the sweat-resistant ergonomic handlebar, foam padded seat and inbuilt self-generating fan to keep the heat away while you row. The foot platform is high grade and adjustable, and the front and back wheels make transportation easy. It also features a compact and space-saving design. Without mincing words, the Ventus 2 rower gives great value for money.


  • Dual resistance system
  • Extra monitor display features
  • Well written manual instructions
  • Sturdy, stable and smooth to use
  • Saves space


  • Resistance may not be high enough for advanced rowers
  • Slide rail may be too short for taller people.

SportsTech RSX500 Rowing Machine

The SportsTech rowing machine is equipped with outstanding features that easily makes it one of the best rowing machines with magnetic resistance that is wallet-friendly. In fact, it is just as good as some high-end rowing machines. No jokes, let’s take a look at how.

For starters, it has a mind-blowing 16 computer-controlled resistance levels, and a 7kg flywheel _the combination of these two translates to an extremely smooth and quiet rowing action. Factor in the smart control panel with 12 pre-installed programs and we have a masterpiece. This panel gives you a variety of training options; competition mode, manual mode, and HRC training. Not to mention the smart device holder. The machine is also compatible with the e-health app.

Everything is top-notch with this rowing machine; the seat is slightly elevated to improve sitting posture. The slide rail is guided by a ball-bearing mounted 4 roller system for quiet operation. The pedals are flexible, non-slip, nap structured and have a belt-buckle to keep the feet in place. Additionally, it is equipped with a long pull mechanism that allows very tall individuals to effortlessly use the rowing machine.

The pull system is also whisper-quiet, which makes it perfect for home use. The machine is device compatible too and even has an extra USB port. How thoughtful. To crown it all, it is foldable and has inbuilt transport wheels to facilitate hassle-free movement and storage.


  • Includes a heart rate belt, which is rare
  • Folds to save space
  • Advanced monitor functions
  • Multi-resistant levels


  • E-health functions poorly
  • It is not compatible with kinomap
  • More costly than other rowers on this list

VidaXL Rowing Machine With Air Resistance

A relatively new and entry-level air rowing machine, the VidaXl rowing machine deserves some applause. While it does not have superior features, it is able to offer a decent and effective home-based workout, and it is reasonably priced as well. Definitely one of the best home rowing machines under £500.

It works with an air resistance system that offers a smooth, quiet and maintenance-free rowing activity. Like with most rowing machines, you can monitor your workout performance via the LCD display monitor that reports time elapsed, current speed, distance covered and calories burned.

The footrests are slip-resistant and are equipped with pedal straps that secure the feet in place during the workout to prevent slip accidents. The seat is ergonomically designed to ensure user-comfort, it prevents body aches and pain.

The slide rail is sturdy and made of aluminum. The red, black and silver colors make the machine appealing to the eyes. It also has transport rollers that make it easy to move. And last but definitely not the least, it is equipped with floor levelers that provide more stability to the machine.


  • Easy to set up
  • Sturdy and stable
  • Compact and lightweight; 26.8g only in weight
  • Smooth and quiet operation


  • Limited monitor performance stats
  • Limited user reviews

JLL Ventus 3 Air Resistance Rowing Machine

This is another air resistance rowing machine from JLL fitness; the latest one at that. It succeeds the Ventus 2 rowing machine. It has similar remarkable features to its predecessor. It is specially designed for whole-body workouts and for muscle building.

It will appear that JLL fitness is popular for manufacturing air-magnetic rowing machines. Like its counterpart, the Ventus 3 features both air and magnetic resistance. It also has 16 levels of magnetic resistance for more intense workouts. Quite suitable for both novice and expert rowers.

In addition to this, the nylon belt is positioned near the flywheel, and it has 8 adjustment levels that make room for workout intensity regulation you can increase or decrease intensity levels as you deem fit. The console displays important workout metrics, including stroke count and pulse readings. It also has 22 programs that include body fat, watt, heart rate, user mode, and manual control.

Again, user comfort is ensured with foam padded handlebars and a soft leather foam-filled seat. The footplates have adjustable toe straps that keep the feet tightly locked in place. It also features a dual aluminum plated slide rail that is supported by two smooth wheeled rollers. Lastly, the rower can be stored upright to save storage space.


  • Air and magnetic resistance functions
  • Workout intensity control
  • Strong resistance levels
  • Multi-program options
  • Heart rate band included
  • Upright storage option


  • Recently released (21st of July)
  • No user feedback yet.

SportPlus SP-MR-010 Indoor Rower

Also referred to as Turbine Rower SP-MR-010, this magnetic rower is furnished with a maintenance-free, turbine-air-braking system with 8-level resistance adjustment settings. This combined feature makes for an authentic rowing motion.

The seat is comfortable and has a ball-bearing mechanism that slides quietly over the extra-long aluminum rail. This makes the rower a good option for people who are not fans of noisy rowing machines. The foot pedals are equipped with safety straps to minimise slipping incidents. For a safer workout and also to protect your floor, you can invest in a good rowing machine mat.

The LCD console has good readability and is adjustable. It displays the basic essential workout stats, including pulse measurement. For an even accurate pulse reading, the manufacturers included a 5 KHz radio receiver on the computer. The pulse data can be wirelessly transmitted via a chest strap device which is, unfortunately, not included.

The machine is also foldable and can be stored after use to save space. It has transport wheels on the front stand that makes it convenient to move and to store. For stability, the integrated floor leveling does the job. Overall, it is certified safe to use and is undoubtedly one of the best folding rowing machines with magnetic resistance for under £500.


  • Relatively easy to assemble
  • Device and app compatible (app is from manufacturer)
  • Provides good quality workout
  • Great value for money
  • Saves storage space


  • HR chest strap not included
  • App does not function adequately
  • Resistance may be too low for professional rowers

Merax Magnetic Rowing Machine

Merax is a household name in the fitness world; they are known for manufacturing innovative workout gear. They have several quality rowing machines to their name, and this model is one of their recent releases (first available on 13 April 2020). And did it meet the mark? You bet.

The Merax magnetic rowing machine is designed to be on par with commercial gym rowing machines. It runs on magnetic resistance that can be manually adjusted via a knob that is located under the handlebar. The magnet is located close to the flywheel, and the closer they are to each other, the more the resistance. The magnetic mechanism provides a smooth rowing experience.

The LCD screen display measures virtually the same workout metrics as other rowing machines within this price range, but it includes the number of movements and pulse settings. It also features a media shelf for device convenience.

The saddle seat is well constructed to fit the body curvature, which makes it comfortable to sit on. The handlebar is well-shaped and has a firm grip on it. It levels the elbow at a comfortable height for effective workouts. Wearing a pair of rowing gloves will make your workout even more comfortable and you will avoid developing blisters. Assembly is also a piece of cake as the instruction manual is well detailed. And the best part? You can fold this rower when not in use to save some space. Totally deserves to be on the list of best rowing machines under £500.


  • Whisper-quiet operation
  • comfortable seat and handlebar
  • Foldable and maximizes storage space
  • Features a media shelf
  • Easy to put together


  • Complaints that the foot pedals are unstable, so wearing a good pair of rowing shoes is even more important
  • 16 washers needed, but only 12 are provided

SportPlus SP-MR-008 Indoor Foldable Rowing Machine

This is another quality rowing machine from SportPlus. Attractive and functional are the adjectives that define the SportPlus indoor rower. When it comes to quality indoor rowing machines under £500, this rower is sitting sturdy on the list. It is a must-buy for the budget-conscious fitness enthusiast.

You can’t help but like the extremely quiet magnetic brake system that is also 8-level adjustable. You can conveniently adjust resistance levels by turning a rotary knob, this makes it the perfect gear for strength and endurance training. More so, it is able to effectively work 80% of the body’s muscles. Awesome right?

You can tilt the console to your desired angle to view important workout data like calorie consumption, time elapsed, stroke per minute and many more. However, the display features are minimal. The ergonomically comfortable seat with ball-bearing is designed to glide over the high-quality aluminum rail with little to no noise. Thus, you can work out in absolute silence and harmony.

The inbuilt foldable construction is another feature that makes this rower endearing. The sportplus rower can be folded and stored when not in use, and the integrated transport rollers make this even more achievable.


  • Extremely quiet
  • Provides smooth rowing action
  • Good resistance; even on low settings
  • Eye-catching; Good aesthetics


  • Some users have complained that the calorie readings are sometimes inaccurate

Fitness Reality 1000 Plus Rowing Machine

There is no shortage of awesome, affordable magnetic rowing machines, and the fitness reality 1000 plus rowing machine is one among the many that are making headlines. This rower has been popular since it was released in 2019. So, what makes this rower one of the best exercise rowers under £500? You are about to find out.

It offers 14 adjustable levels of magnetic resistance; this is by far the highest resistance level on this list. However, this does not mean that the resistance is super strong; it simply offers a variety for different resistance needs. The LCD monitor is large and tracks the usual workout data. The Bluetooth feature and the MyCloudFitness app compatibility has to be the coolest thing about this rower.

The app tracks performance data when connected with the rower, which somewhat renders the monitor useless. The seat is quite comfortable and is wide enough to fit. The handlebar is also extra wide and provides a strong grip. The footrests are pivotal and allow for a full range of motion.

Another cool thing about this rowing machine is the “Additional exercises” feature. It allows users to perform other exercises like curls, front raises, and triceps extensions to mention but a few. The slide is made of aluminum, and it glides smoothly over ball-bearers. A nylon rowing strap works to reduce noise and is quite durable. The 1000 plus rower is also a foldable budget rower with built-in transportation wheels.


  • Bluetooth compatibility
  • Great build quality
  • App connectivity to track workout metrics
  • Performs additional workouts
  • Smooth and quiet rowing action
  • Easy to assemble


  • Seat is a little uncomfortable
  • App doesn’t work optimally

DuraB S Rowing Machine

This is another recently released magnetic rowing machine that is already getting great user feedback. Like most magnetic rowing machines, the DuraB rower prides itself with providing extremely quiet and smooth rowing strokes. This is made possible by the joint effort of the high-quality aluminum rail and magnetic flywheels.

The resistance is pegged at 8 levels and can be easily adjusted via a resistance selection button. The 4kg flywheel and the varying resistance levels make for an effective full-body and endurance training workouts. Expectedly, it has an LCD display monitor that gives a record of vital workout metrics. It is also equipped with a device holder for relaxation and entertainment purposes.

The DuraB rowing machine prioritizes comfort; the long slide rail and saddle seat are ergonomically constructed to fit the body curves. The foot pedals are large and made to fit different foot sizes. It also comes equipped with safety straps to prevent slipping. The handlebar is well padded and easy to grip.

If you are worried about space consumption, the DuraB rower is your go-to machine as it effortlessly minimizes footprint and saves a considerable amount of space. All thanks to its compact, foldable design. It is also lightweight, weighs just about 27kg.


  • Provides smooth and near-silent operation
  • Comfortable to use
  • Lightweight and easy to move
  • Great for small spaces


  • Basic monitor function
  • Still new and not widely tested

Buying Guide: How to Shop for Rowing Machines Under £500

It is one thing to find an affordable rowing machine, and it is another to purchase a good quality one. This is because buying a good rowing machine for under £500 takes more than just a cursory glance at its external features. You need to understand some important features that make a good rowing machine. Some of these features include:

Resistance Type

Do you want a rowing machine that works with air, water, or magnetic resistance? Air rowing machines generate resistance through a flywheel that spins against air the faster you row, the better the resistance. On the downside, they tend to be noisy.

Water rowers are the closest to a real rowing experience. They generate resistance using paddles that move forcefully against moving water. Like with air rowers, the harder you row, the higher the resistance. However, they are quieter than air rowers. They produce a pleasant splashing sound. On the downside, they tend to be heavy because of the adjoining water tanks.

Magnetic rowers are loved for their quiet and smooth rowing action. This is because they generate resistance through a magnet and a flywheel. They mostly feature a compact and foldable design, and resistance can be adjusted using a button or a slider.

Monitor Display

This is important as well. A digital display allows you to keep tabs on your workout performance. Keeping track of your performance while you workout helps to boost your optimism and motivates you to do even better. It is best to buy rowing machines that display vital workout information like time spent, calories, burned, distance covered, and stroke/min. A machine that displays additional information like heart rate or that has other advanced features is a plus.


For space reasons, it is important to take into consideration the size and the foldability of the rowing machine. If you are short on space, a water rower may not be your best choice as they tend to be large. Magnetic rowing machines are usually more compact and foldable. Some other types of rowing machines are also moderately sized and may have vertical storage options that help to conserve space.


This feature is particularly important if noise is your worst enemy or if you live with other people that you wouldn’t like to disturb. If so, air rowing machines may not be your best option. You should go for magnetic rowers that are renowned for their quiet mode of operation. Water rowing machines are great too if you enjoy the pleasant swishing sound of water that is.

Rail length /User weight capacity

Some rowing machines may not be compatible with your weight or your height. It is imperative that you check the rail length and the user weight capacity before making the purchase. It would be regrettable to end up with a machine you cannot use because of weight and height constraints.


To protect your investment, you shouldn’t overlook the warranty information. A good warranty is an assurance that the machine is durable and reliable. Some budget rowing machines offer long warranty periods up to 10 years and some even cover part replacements. Make the purchase worth your while by going for a budget rower with a good warranty to boot.

Final Verdict

Here comes the anticipated section, the final verdict of our rowing machine reviews under 500 in the UK, where we reveal the very best of the bunch. Without further ado, the JLL Ventus 2 air resistance rowing machine topped our list for the best overall rowing machine under £500. It is in a league of its own with a dual resistance system and advanced monitor display features; temperature, clock and calendar functions. It is sturdy, stable and easy to assemble. It also features a compact, folding design that helps to limit space consumption.

The Sportsplus SP-MR-010 turbine rower ranked high as the best magnetic resistance rower on the list. It has a good price point and a smooth, quiet and functional operation. Although it is still new in the market, it has a promising future.

The Circuit 167 hydro rower is easily the best water rowing machine on the list. It has notable features that provide a realistic rowing experience. It is well-built and has good user weight support. Though the monitor display is limited, it provides all the essential workout data.

Selecting the best rowing machine for under £500 should no longer be a challenge as this guide has simplified the decision – making process for you. All the rowing machines we reviewed, are quality wallet-friendly options; you only need to pick the one that meets your workout preference and start rowing away to better health.

Fitness Elan