7 Best Compact Rowers: Foldable & Cheap Rowing Machines 2021

The Best Rowers For Small Spaces That Still Pack In A Good Workout

April 20, 2021 Updated May 21, 2021

Close up of unrecognizable woman exercising on rowing machine in a gym.
Getty Images/ skynesher

If you’re looking for a foldable or compact rower for your home gym, you’re not the only one. Even in a post-COVID world, many are sticking to working out at home versus the gym. It’s convenient, and if you find budget-friendly equipment, it might even be cheaper in the long run. If you’re unsure because you live in a small space, you can actually find equipment that’s compact, foldable, or both — that way, you can squeeze it in your living room or guest room, or easily put it away when you’re done. Rowers are a great option, because they don’t take up a lot of space, they’re easy to store, and you can find cheap options. (See also: treadmills for small spaces and indoor exercise bikes — we’ve got some suggestions!)

 Shop some of the best options ahead and commit to that exercise plan you’ve been considering — we totally support you!

Best Foldable Rowers

Stamina X Air Rower

The Stamina X Air Rower immediately caught our eye because of its beautiful red color. If you like your exercise equipment to stand out, this is a good option. But guess what? If you also want to be able to tuck your rowing machine away, this is also a good option. The full-body rower is foldable and has wheels so you can put it away while you’re not using it, which is great if you don’t have much extra room. It has a padded seat for a little extra comfort and a display screen to keep track of your workout. Several reviewers also noted how smoothly it rows.


ECHANFIT Magnetic Rower

You get 16 levels of resistance with the ECHANFIT Magnetic Rower. The full-body machine boasts a quiet ride and can hold a person up to 265 pounds. It’s built to be ergonomic so you’ll be comfortable while you’re working out. It’s also foldable so you can put it away while you’re not using it — perfect for small spaces. It even has a water bottle holder so your hydration is right close by.


MaxKare Water Rowing Machine

This MaxKare Water Rowing Machine takes up a little more floor space than some of the others but first of all, it’s worth it and second of all, it’s still foldable. It has a large monitor to keep track of your whole workout, plus it offers a super smooth ride. It’s also made to give you the real feel of water resistance, which is great if you’re training to actually row in the water. But it’s also great if you just want to pretend like you might get in a boat and row yourself somewhere. And if you think the only bonus of the water feature is for the resistance, many Amazon reviewers said the sound of the water was peaceful and therapeutic.

$379.99 AT AMAZON

Best Compact Rowers

Lanos Hydraulic Rowing Machine

The Lanos Hydraulic Rowing Machine also doesn’t take up a lot of space, making it perfect for small rooms and small homes. It has an LCD monitor to track your strikes and foot straps to help hold you in place. The resistance is easy to control with a manual knob, and the seat has a molded design to make it more comfortable while you’re working out. We can appreciate a bit of comfort while we sweat just like the next person! Amazon reviewers largely noted how easy it was to assemble and how solidly your feet are held in place. Both a plus for your workout.

$149.99 AT AMAZON

Stamina Body Trac Glider

Unlike most of the other rowing machines you’ll see, the Stamina Body Trac Glider actually mimics what it would be like rowing on the water. You’re pulling arm bars in a rowing motion rather than one bar on a cord. If you’re looking for a compact rower with a more authentic feel, this is it. The arms also fold in so it’s easier to store, and has everything else you expect in an exercise machine — cushioned seat, display screen, and foot holds. Amazon reviewers mostly point out how much they enjoy the range of motion this machine provides and how much it feels like being in an actual boat.


Best Cheap Rowing Machines

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-Full Motion Rowing Machine

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-Full Motion Rowing Machine is small but mighty — which is exactly what you want in a compact rower. It has a weight capacity of 350 pounds, which is much more inclusive than some of the compact rowers on the market. It’s also equipped with an LCD screen to show you all the info you need during your workout, including time, calories burned, strokes, and more. It has 12 levels of resistance to give you a variety of challenging levels. What’s also great about this machine is the price. As far as exercise equipment goes, it’s very budget-friendly, which means you’re getting in a solid workout for not a whole lot of money.


Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 Rowing Machine Rower

You want to talk about a good deal? Try this Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 Rowing Machine Rower. You can snag this compact rowing machine for under $100. It’s a no-frills machine that gets the job done. You can strap your feet in and get right to work. It offers 12 levels of resistance and a small screen to keep track of your workout. And that’s really about it. It has nearly 10,000 ratings on Amazon and clocks in at a 4.4 out of 5 stars, meaning people really love it.

$99.95 AT AMAZON

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Sunny Health & Fitness SF-Full Motion Ro...
Lanos Hydraulic Rowing Machine
Stamina X Air Rower
ECHANFIT Magnetic Rower
Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW1205 Rowing ...
Stamina Body Trac Glider
MaxKare Water Rowing Machine