compact rowing machine

Top 5 Best Rowing Machine for Small Spaces


Best compact rowers

Best rowing machines for small spaces include rowers such as the Stamina BodyTrac Glider 1050These rowers are compact and built with space in mind. Those in apartments or limited by space can comfortably use these machines for decent cardio workouts. The best rowing machines for small spaces come with hydraulic resistance or magnetic resistance. These are the best choices for small spaces as they’re not bulky unlike air rowers or water rowing machines that take up a lot of space. Even though these machines are lightweight, they come with impressive weight-bearing capacities. Machines such as SF-RW5639 Full Motion Rowing Machine support up to 350 lbs user capacity.

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If you’re curious or in a hurry:

✅ Stamina BodyTrac Glider 1050 is our top pick for the best rowing machine for small spaces!


Best rowing machine for small spaces

1. Stamina BodyTrac Glider 1050 Rowing Machine

Promising review; “I would recommend it to anyone who likes to exercise with a full range of motion rowing..”


  • 250lb weight capacity
  • Full motion rowing
  • Hydraulic resistance
  • Foldable design.

What we like;

  • Compact
  • Easy to assemble and use.
  • Quiet in use.
  • Sturdy

What we don’t like;

  • Resistance keeps dropping.

The Stamina Body Track Glider 1050 is a sturdy well- built machine. It’s an ideal choice for anyone looking to exercise at home without breaking the bank. Assembly is very straightforward as the manual comes with clear step-by-step instructions. While it does need about 5-foot of clearance while in use, it is foldable. Its compact design makes it easy for those with small spaces. Store it under the bed or in a closet after use. Unlike the other rowing machines with pulls, the arms on the Stamina glider machine move in circular motions. An ideal choice for anyone who wants to mimic the feel of rowing on a boat at home.


With this rowing machine, you can position your arms at different angles as you flex back and forth just as you would on a boat. In addition, this is a great way to exercise different muscle groups. You will feel the burn on your biceps, triceps, abs, and back after each session on this rowing machine.  The tension knob controls the resistance and you can turn it up to increase or decrease tension. The seat glides back and forth very smoothly. However, the hydraulic absorbers heat up quickly due to friction as you row. Be careful not to touch the cylinder located under the rail at the rear. The display monitor keeps good track of your workout metrics. Check your time, rows, and calories burned in real-time.

2. Sunny Health & Fitness Hydraulic Rowing Machine

Promising review; “This may be the best product for the money that I have ever spent. I highly recommend it!.”


  • 220 lbs weight capacity.
  • Hydraulic resistance.
  • 12-levels of resistance.

What we like;

  • Small footprint
  • Great price.
  • Quick and easy assembly.
  • Lightweight design.

What we didn’t like;

  • The seat needs more padding.

If you’re looking for a cardio machine under $200 with a small footprint. Consider Sunny Health & Fitness Hydraulic Rowing Machine. It doesn’t take up much space when in use and also comes with a lightweight design that makes it very easy to move around. An ideal choice for those in apartments or limited by space.  While it might not be the machine for Olympic-level training, it provides a decent workout. Assembly is a breeze as the frame comes already put together. All you have to do is add on the attachments. Resistance on the rower ranges from 1 – 12.


While it might not seem like much, it will have you sweating and out of breath. The tension feels good at all levels. The lower resistance levels are best for aerobic workouts, while the upper levels are best for upper body workouts.  As this is a piston-hydraulic rower, it does heat up from time to time and might lose resistance when used for prolonged periods. Also, be mindful of the cylinder as it gets scorching hot. The only difficult thing you might experience on this rowing machine is the low profile that makes it challenging to get on and off.

3. SF-RW5639 Full Motion Rowing Machine

Promising review; “It is worth every penny and then some.”


  • 350lb weight capacity
  • 12-levels of adjustable resistance.
  • Hydraulic resistance.
  • Full motion rowing.

What we like;

  • Compact.
  • Solid and sturdy.
  • Inexpensive.
  • Quick and easy assembly.
  • High weight-bearing capacity.

What we don’t like;

  • Limited resistance.

The SF-RW5639 Full Motion Rowing Machine holds an impressive 350 lbs user weight capacity, despite its affordable price tag. It is ideal for anyone looking for a fun workout. Assembly is straightforward and shouldn’t take more than 30-minutes. The instruction booklet is very clear and all tools/screws needed are included. The key to success with this machine is proper form and posture. A key factor that makes it ideal for beginners looking to get started with rowing.


While it might take some time to get used to the growing action, it feels as smooth as riding on a gentle canoe. The resistance levels are challenging, and you get a decent workout that engages multiple muscle groups. Its rowing action is quiet and you can catch TV or listen to music to keep yourself entertained. The seat feels comfortable and glides very smoothly while the motion is practically silent. It’s an ideal choice for heavier users for a heavy-duty rower.

4. Lanos Hydraulic Rowing Machine

Promising review; “I highly recommend if you want to save some money.”


  • Recommended user height – 4’9” to 6’7”.
  • 250 lbs weight capacity.
  • Hydraulic resistance.
  • Full-range arms.
  • Foldable design.

Reasons to buy;

  • Affordable.
  • Easy to assemble.
  • Easy to use.

Reasons to avoid;

  • Foot holders and straps are of poor quality.

Lano’s rowing machine is an affordable cardio machine that doesn’t take up much space. A great alternative for anyone limited by space but looking to get a full-body workout. Besides, its lightweight design makes sit very easy to manoeuver. Move it around easily by lifting or sliding. Store it under the bed, closet, or in a corner. It comes mostly assembled with easy-to-follow instructions. It shouldn’t take more than 30-minutes to put it together. Its variable resistance is great and can be adjusted using a tension dial. The seat is wide and glides smoothly with proper technique. The rowing motion feels like that of a boat on the water. The arms mimic the true rowing motions with a full range of motion. Even with the resistance at low, expect a workout that will have you get your heart rate up and sweating in no time.

5. SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine

Promising review: ” If you are on a very tight budget for your home gym, sure, go ahead and get this rower..”


  • 250 lbs max user weight capacity.
  • Extra-long 48-inch slide rail.
  • 8-levels of adjustable resistance.
  • Magnetic resistance.
  • Foldable design.

What we like;

  • Compact
  • Quiet when in use.
  • Budget price
  • Easy to use.

What we didn’t like;

  • Doesn’t track distance.

Sunny Health and Fitness has been in the business of making high-quality fitness equipment for years. Its SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine is not any different. This rowing machine is an ideal choice for anyone on a tight budget and limited by space.  The machine comes with a small footprint and is foldable after use. Assembly couldn’t be any easier as it includes a total of 5- simple steps. All arts are labeled and bagged to match the corresponding step. Expect to spend 30-minutes or less as it’s all very straightforward. The rowing action is quiet, all you hear is the seat as it glides up and down the rail. Even so, the noise level is very minimal.


Exercise early in the morning or late at night without fear of causing a disturbance. 8-levels of adjustable resistance are available to help you get the most out of each session. The difficulty levels are well-balanced and the change at each level is noticeable.  Seat movement is smooth while the slide rail is long with enough leg extension for taller users. Taller users up to can comfortably use this rower with room to spare. Overall, this is an inexpensive way to get a decent workout without sacrificing too much space at home.

6. Fitness Reality 1000 Magnetic Rowing Rower

Promising review; “This rowing machine is compact, versatile, and easy on the joints. 10/10 would recommend. ”


  • Recommended user height – 4’9” to 6’6”.
  • 250 lbs weight capacity.
  • 14-levels of magnetic resistance.
  • Bluetooth connectivity.

What we like;

  • Foldable design.
  • Whisper-quirt when in use.
  • Quick and easy assembly.
  • Wide range resistance settings.

What we didn’t like;

  • Inaccurate workout metrics
  • Pivoting pedals

Fitness Reality 1000 Magnetic Rower is simple yet effective. While it doesn’t come with all the extra bells and whistles, it gets the job done. It’s also an ideal choice for small space as it folds up for vertical storage after use. Assembly is easy, and shouldn’t take more than 30-minutes. All tools needed to put it together are included with clear instructions. It comes with an impressive 14-levels of adjustable resistance. Use this magnetic rowing machine to improve your cardio and progress without fear of maxing out on the resistance. It’s whisper-quiet in action, watch TV or listen to music at a moderate volume even as you exercise.


Its thick nylon cord makes for smooth rowing action with a clean catch and drive. Multi-functional foot pads make it easy to incorporate resistance training with upper body exercises. It provides A bonus feature for beginners getting started with resistance training. However, these footpads won’t do much for a seasoned powerlifter. The LCD screen on the Fitness Reality 1000 Rower is easy to use and read. It keeps good track of all your workout data in real-time.

Best compact rowing machine