Rowing Machine vs an Elliptical: Which Is Better For You?

Exercising at home saves you the trouble of dealing with traffic or a packed gym. If you’re buying just one home workout machine, it can be tough to know which one is better: a rowing machine vs an elliptical. We’ll go through each machine’s pros and cons, comparing the two and seeing which one will benefit more than the other. 

Rowing machines


Rowing machines are exercise equipment that requires users to pull back on a bar while pushing out with their legs in motion, like rowing a boat. A rowing machine is an excellent form of cardiovascular exercise, which also works some key muscle groups to build strength. Average rowing machines cost around $200-$500, while high-end options cost anywhere between $1,000-$2,000.

Rowing Machine Pros 

  • Magnetic rowing gear offers you a silent workout, thus enhancing your efficiency.
  • They are a little more space saver because these are smaller than some other rowers. It is one of the best sorts of home rowing machines. You can adjust this rowing machine in your home.
  • Some magnetic rowers also come in folding designs. Thus, you can focus more on your workout strategy rather than worrying about space.

Rowing Machine Cons 

  • Can put a strain on your lower back and knees.
  • Requires mobility through the hips to sit close to the floor.
  • Not great if you have poor posture.


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Ellipticals are somewhere between treadmills and step machines. You stand on large pedals and hold onto the handles, moving your arms and legs in an elliptical motion. Using the elliptical also improves the entire body’s balance and maintains overall physical fitness. Prices of ellipticals can run a few hundred dollars to over $2,000 for a commercial-grade, high-end machine.

Elliptical Pros 

  • If you are recovering from an injury or an operation but are keen to start exercising, pick the elliptical as the machine is ideal for low-impact workouts.
  • If you want to stay lean or lose weight, it’s hard to beat the calorie burn from an elliptical.
  • An elliptical may be slightly safer than a treadmill since your feet never leave the pedals. This eliminates the potential misstep resulting in a fall or loss of balance.

Elliptical Cons 

  • When it comes to building strength and muscle, they’re not the best option.
  • The elliptical is mainly built for people with average heights, so if the pedals on the machine do not fit your legs and hips, you may feel uncomfortable using the machine.
  • Using the elliptical can put an unequal strain on your lower body, particularly the legs.

So, when it comes to a rowing machine vs an elliptical, which is better for you? 

rowing machine vs an elliptical

It depends on what you are looking for and which is better. Both machines will help you lose weight if you stick to a targeted training program, and they are both especially useful if you are recovering from an injury due to their low-impact nature and the fact that they work the entire body.

The elliptical is ideal if you are prone to injury and want to keep the impact on your joints to a minimum while raising your heart rate and burning calories. The rowing machines are mechanically simpler than elliptical trainers, your odds of getting a low-end piece of equipment that holds up to regular use are better with a rower than an elliptical trainer.

You have at the machines and what you are trying to accomplish. Look at what you are trying to accomplish weight, training, and health as you learn about each machine and see which one can give you all you are looking for. We hope this helps you by giving you a detailed insight into each machine.