Best Air Rowing Machines Under 500 – Our Top Picks

Air rowing machines are a gift to every fitness-oriented individual. Scratch that, they are valuable to everyone with a body and a muscle. They are suitable for both home and gym use and are the top choice for most fitness trainers and athletes. They use air as a resistance mechanism while providing a real water-like motion sensation coupled with a cool breeze to boot. Talk about working out in bliss. And the best part, you absolutely do not need to exhaust your budget to purchase one. In fact, you will be getting to know the best air rowing machines under $500 in a bit. But first, a little introduction is in order.

If you are looking to stay in shape, strengthen your cardiovascular system and tone your muscles with a low impact workout machine, then an air rowing machine might just be your best bet. Muscle exercises involve working against an opposing force (resistance). When rowing on a boat, the water serves as the natural resistance, but an air rower mimics this resistance using air that floats over an internal flywheel. The wheel is connected to a rowing handle which when pulled, causes it to spin and resist surrounding air.

It is a given that air rowers are a must-have for fitness enthusiasts, and they can be affordable. You can buy good and quality indoor air resistance rowers under $500, but if you are willing to spend more, you can also check out the top air rowers under $1000.

There are many affordable rowing machines, but these are quite the “budget savers” you would agree with. However, choosing from the tons of available budget-friendly air rowers can be draining and may be liable to poor outcomes. But not to worry, we have credibly reviewed and compiled a detailed list of top air rowing machines under $500. Simply read or row through the details and make your choice.

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Top 6 Air Rowing Machines Under $500

Marcy Foldable Turbine Rower NS-6050RE

If you want an affordable rowing exercise machine that can improve your cardiovascular health, help you burn some good calories, and strengthen your muscles, then you should look no further than the Marcy foldable turbine air rowing machine with 8-level resistance. It is specially designed to give your muscles a good workout while exerting little to no strain on your legs and joints. The foldable design is tailored for compact storage, which solves the problem of space consumption.

This indoor rowing machine with air resistance under 500 is equipped with a sturdy and durable steel frame and 8 adjustable resistance levels that are guaranteed to make you sweat. However, it is quite heavy and has small wheels, which makes transportation a bit of a hassle. The 8 resistance levels range from easy to moderate, with the highest resistance being a little too difficult to navigate. Some users aren’t too comfortable with the resistance settings and complain that it is not up to par. But here is the trick, rowing at a fast pace for a prolonged period of time can provide you with more resistance than you will ever need.

Comfort-wise, this rowing machine tops the score with its foam-padded seat and handlebar that makes for a cozy rowing experience. This feature also enables smooth, full-range motion rowing. The adjustable footplates have straps to hold your feet in place which coupled with the seat design, provides comfort like no other.

The foot length specification for this model is 86 inches, and it accommodates a maximum user weight of 300 Ibs. The LCD in-built display monitor allows you to keep track of your workout data related to speed, time, distance, calories burned, and RPM settings. It certainly leaves no stone unturned in ensuring a great user experience.

Product Features

  • Built-in display monitor
  • 8 resistance levels
  • Two adjustable footplates with straps
  • Foam padded seat and handlebar
  • Solid steel frame
  • 2 years warranty with parts replacement


  • Affordable with a quality build
  • Easy to assemble
  • Great for cardio workouts
  • Durable foam handle with non-slip grip
  • Easy compact storage
  • Adequate workout data


  • Relatively heavy
  • Can be loud
  • Resistance may be light for professional users

SereneLife Air and Magnetic Home Rower

The SereneLife air rowing machine is on a league of its own with a dual resistance system; air and magnetic. It is a compact air rower that is convenient for home and office use, which means less gym time. It is a well-structured foldable row machine and can accommodate a 250Ibs maximum user weight capacity. Though not a professional rowing machine, it is ideal for a decent home-based cardiovascular workout.

As with most rowers, the SereneLife rowing machine may take up considerable space, but the seating rail can be folded up and stored vertically, which helps to conserve more space. It has a contoured seat that is cushioned for comfort and a smooth gliding activity. The curvy ergonomic handlebar is attached to a reinforced pull cable that is linked to the magnetic resistance system. Ensure a safer workout experience with a good pair of rowing gloves. The footplates are large and skid resistant. Thus, it can fit different foot sizes and rowing shoes.

The air and magnetic resistance systems are complementary in function, and it is comprised of a fan flywheel and a magnetic pad. The multi-resistant levels offer varying degrees of resistance and can be adjusted via the console buttons. And the good news, its noise level is not distracting enough as to drown out your Tv or music volumes. But it is not completely quiet either. The bottom line is, the noise can be tolerated.

The SereneLife indoor fan rowing machine under $500 deserves to be called a state-of-the-art machine. It features Bluetooth connectivity that is compatible with all available modern devices. Not to mention the LCD monitor that can measure workout stats that includes time, strides, distance, calories, and even pulse. While the included free downloadable Fitshow app doesn’t work optimally, it still does the job. And oh, there’s a bonus accessory too, a tablet holder that allows you to easily connect your smartphone or tablet with the machine.

Product Features

  • Air and magnetic resistance system
  • 16 adjustable resistance levels
  • Mid-range LCD display monitor
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Free Fitshow app compatible with IOS/Android devices
  • Console with tablet holder
  • Large anti-slip footplates
  • Cushioned and contoured seat
  • 1-year warranty


  • Suitable for weight loss, cardio exercise, and sports training
  • monitors workout progress including pulse and calories
  • Durable reinforced pull cable
  • Compact foldable stand-up design for easy storage
  • Easy device pairing with Bluetooth and Fitshow app
  • Easy to handle; light construction
  • Requires little maintenance
  • Auto power-off for extended battery life
  • Low noise productivity


  • Takes up some space during workouts
  • Heart rate chest strap not included

MaxKare Dual-Belt Air Rowing Machine

MaxKare air rower dual belt air rowing machine is easily one of the best indoor air resistance rowers under $500. It features a foldable compact design and also comes with a tablet or smartphone holder. This durable rower is perfect for low-impact, full-body workouts that target the arms, shoulders, back, and legs.

One feature that stands out in this rower is the resistance capacity. They don’t call it dual resistance for nothing; it has a dual-belt drive design that accelerates the resistance. The more you pull, the more the resistance. And what more? It generously rewards your effort with a cool breeze after each stroke, all thanks to its full exposure fan design.

The slide rail can be folded in an upright position for storage. It also has built-in transportation wheels that facilitate easy movement. This equates to saving more space with little stress. It has a well-constructed triangular structure, and sturdy steel frame plus that adds bonus points to its durability. Hence, it can support a maximum weight capacity of 264 lbs.

The ergonomic seat design made of polyurethane, the large adjustable non-skid nylon foot straps and the high-end nylon rowing straps with padded handles, makes for an overall comfortable rowing sensation. The digital monitor gives a record of the scan, count, time, calories, and distance covered. And it has an iPad holder for user convenience. These features and more are probably the reason why this fitness machine racked up stellar customer reviews on Amazon.

Product Features

  • Strong air resistance
  • Foldable frame design
  • Ergonomic seat design
  • Digital screen display
  • iPad holder


  • Sturdy and durable design
  • High resistance levels
  • Conserves space
  • Comfortable to use
  • Well-packaged with straightforward instructions


  • Difficult to assemble without following instructions
  • Might be a bit loud due to the fan design

Stamina ATS Air Rower For Home Use

The name itself gives its strength maximizing function away. The stamina ATS is an air-cum-fan rowing machine under $500 that gives you a good run for your money with its solid wind resistance features. With this rower, a maximum sweat-inducing work out is assured. You wouldn’t just be doing cardio and muscle exercises, but you will also get an extra push to be at the top of your fitness game.

For this air-powered rowing machine model, the dynamic wind resistance has the spotlight. The resistance level is hinged on user-effort. It offers variable resistance that is determined by the user’s rowing pace. There are no buttons to control or adjust resistance levels. The faster the pull, the higher the resistance, and the slower the pull, the lower the resistance. It all depends on how fast or how slow you want to go. The perfect example of ” your wish is my command.”

The multi-function LCD monitor design has great readability and can efficiently track essential workout data, speed, distance, time, and calories. It is well-built to withstand the strongest of strokes with a strong metal chain chord and a nylon strap that firmly and comfortably secures the foot on the footpads. It is super solid and supports a 250 Ibs maximum weight capacity.

The Stamina air rower gives comfort a top priority, as evidenced by the chrome seat rail build, which ensures a smooth, gliding rowing experience. The seat is also foam padded with ball bearers that maximize comfort for prolonged periods. And the icing on the cake, it folds up easily and saves a lot of space (from 77-48 inches). Absolutely convenient for small spaces.

Product Features

  • User-effort resistance levels
  • Sturdy steel frame
  • Foldable storage design
  • Metal chain chord
  • LCD workout monitor
  • Chrome seat rail and over-sized upholstered seat
  • 3-year frame and 1-year parts warranty


Super strong build
Self-determined resistance level
Very easy to assemble
Great warranty
Good user weight support
Reduces storage space by nearly half of its assembled size


  • Noise can be distracting
  • Lacks manual resistance buttons (damper settings)

MaxKare Air Resistance Rowing Machine

MaxKare deserves some worthy accolades for manufacturing great rowing machines. Like its counterpart, the dual belt model that we reviewed above, the MaxKare adjustable 51-inch model is a great option for low-impact, full-body exercise that relies on adjustable belt and air resistance levels. It is also designed to cater to user comfort and for durability. It is no wonder that it has excellent customer reviews from users on Amazon.

This air rowing machine is quite benevolent with its resistance options. It provides not just one, but two resistant alternatives; air resistance and belt replacement. So, you can equally adjust air and belt resistance levels at no extra cost. The resistance also ranges from easy to hard to meet user preference, which is quite great for air rowing machine workouts.

The ergonomic design provides comfortable foam padded handles, a large upholstered soft seat, and adjustable foot pads with straps that are sure to make rowing a pleasant and satisfactory experience. It is also well-constructed with a solid steel frame and a triangular design, which says a lot about its durability. Additionally, it can support a maximum user weight capacity of 220Ibs.

The digital monitor displays the required workout data, including count and calories burned. It also has in-built transportation wheels that ease movement. The easily foldable design eliminates space challenge, and it comes with an iPad holder that is well-suited for your smartphone or tablet for those days when you want to watch videos or listen to music. This air rower sure gives value for money.

Product features

  • Adjustable air and belt resistance
  • Display monitor and iPad holder
  • In-built transportation wheels
  • Ergonomic build and design
  • Foldable compact design


  • Easy to set up
  • Provides full-body workout
  • Relatively low noise levels
  • Wide adjustable tension range


  • Doesn’t adequately track distance
  • Basic monitor display

EFITMENT RW036 Aero Air Fan Rower

Here comes another portable air rowing machine under $500. The Efitment air rower is every bit the heart-stealer. Like the Stamina rower, it runs on progressive fan air resistance. The design is low-profile and has a solid feel to it. In other words, it is sturdy and durable. Great for cardio and intense workouts.

The rowing machine is solidly built with a 51-inch steel slide rail with heavy-duty ball bearings and four-foot stabilizers for extra support. It provides a smooth belt-driven mechanism that activates the progressive fan resistance that increases with a harder pull.

The seat is wide, contoured and padded; and can support a maximum user weight capacity of 245 lbs. Also, you don’t have to worry about slipping or skidding off, the handlebar is non-slip and sweat-resistant, and the foot platforms are textured and come equipped with adjustable velcro straps that keep the feet firmly in place.

You can monitor your performance progress with the on-board visual display that keeps you updated about your time spent, calories burned, and stroke count while you work out. And just like with most folding air rowers, you don’t have to worry about storage space. All it takes is to fold the slide rail upright in a vertical position, and you are good to go.

Product Features

  • Solid construction
  • Dynamic Fan resistance
  • Ergonomic design
  • Performance display monitor
  • Vertical folding design


  • Solid and stable build for durability
  • Extremely easy to put together
  • Maximum length rail; may accommodate up to 6’3
  • Smooth pulling action
  • Portable and can be easily stored


  • Warranty terms are not clear
  • Poor return policy
  • Can be loud

Buying Guide: How to Shop for the Best Air Rowing Machines Under $500

Now that it has been established that you can get yourself an efficient air rower for a few hundreds of dollars, your next stop will probably be the purchasing aisle. But don’t be too hasty, you need to acquaint yourself with an informed shopping guide before scouting for affordable air resistance rowing machines for home under 500. You absolutely do not want to end up with a substandard bargain, so do your budget a favor and look out for some of these key features while buying quality rowing machines under $500.

Size/Storage Space

The size of the air rower is especially important if you use or live in a small space. The worst thing that can happen is to buy a large air rower that can barely fit into your space. Although most of the air rowers reviewed are foldable, the total assembled size during a workout may be space consuming. Total assembled size can range from 71.3 inches like the MaxKare Dual Belt Dynamic rower to 85 inches like the Marcy Turbine Rower. To say this is quite lengthy and space-consuming is to state the obvious. So before buying any of these machines, you need to make sure you have a workout space that is convenient for the gear.


The air rowing machines have varying levels and mechanisms of resistance as discussed above. While some like the Stamina air rower and the Efitment Aero air rower run on a progressive resistance that is determined by user-effort, others like the SereneLife rowing machine and the Marcy turbine rower offer varying levels of control-operated adjustable resistance. If you are a sucker for intense workouts and extreme resistance levels, the Stamina and Efitment rowers are your best bet. If you prefer to have a measured control on the resistance, air rowers with adjustable resistance levels should be your pick.

If on another hand, you prefer a different type of equipment, you can peruse through the top water rowers or the best magnetic rowing machines.


Some people cherish a quiet environment and are particular about noise pollution when working out. If you fall within this category, you might want to invest in an air rower that isn’t too loud and distracting. Most air rowers make a fair amount of noise because of the air and fan resistance. But there are some models that keep noise to the minimum, such as the SereneLife home air rower. So, if you are not a fan of noise and wouldn’t want to disturb your neighbors, consider getting a low-noise model.

User Weight Capacity

Buying an air rower that you can’t conveniently sit on or use because of weight constraint, is the ultimate disappointment recipe. If your weight doesn’t meet the minimum or exceeds the maximum user weight capacity of an air rower, you should totally forego the rower and consider other options that are suitable for your weight. Self-comfort should be a top priority.


This might seem inconsequential, but believe it or not, some users are put off by rowers that take “sweat and blood” to assemble. And because we aren’t all so “handy” or “tech-savvy,” air rowers with a complicated set up can be an inconvenience. Some instruction manuals that come with these air rowers might be hard to decipher. So, if you don’t have the patience or the time to assemble a complicated air rower, you should carry out due diligence and properly investigate the set-up instructions that come with the air rower before making a purchase.


Nobody likes to buy anything with questionable durability. You want to be sure that the air rower, no matter how cheap, will give you good value for your money. Besides, an affordable air rower can serve as a good investment if you play your cards right. Air rowers with a 1 to a 3-year warranty are a good choice. It means that the rower has a good chance of lasting for a long time, and you can even request for free parts replacement during this time if the manufacturer allows, like the manufacturers of the Stamina air rower and the Marcy Turbine rower.

Final Verdict

It’s been such a pleasant “rowing read,” and this is the point where we get to unravel our top pick for budget rowing machines with air resistance under $500. This was such a tough decision to make because all the six models we reviewed are off the charts and have unique features specific to each. But after thorough research and taking all key features into consideration, the Stamina air rower topped the list.

There is a lot to love about the Stamina air rower; the sturdy built, the 3-year warranty, the variable resistance that allows for an intense and full-body workout, the mind-blowing resistance strength that suits all fitness levels; beginner, intermediate and advanced, the comfortable ergonomic design, the awesome user weight capacity that can support up to 250 Ibs, and the amazing collapsible storage that saves a considerable amount of storage space (nearly 50%).

Truth be told, this air rower even rivals some high-end machines that cost way more, users have even compared it with the more high-end and pricier concept 2 air rower model, and found little to no difference. If you take the noise and lack of damper settings aside, the Stamina rower is a worthy investment and a good workout gear.

On the whole, you don’t have to stretch your budget too thin to buy a good quality air resistance rowing machine. There are a number of valuable and inexpensive options to choose from. Everyone deserves an air rower that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, and with just under $500, you can get an air rower of your dreams, simply follow this guide and get rowing!

Fitness Elan