Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine

Last updated date: August 14, 2020

DWYM Score

8.7

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine

Why Trust DWYM?

DWYM is your trusted product review source. Along with our in-house experts, our team analyzes thousands of product reviews from the most trusted websites. We then create one easy-to-understand review. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in the category.
Show Contents

We looked at the top Rowing Machines and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Rowing Machine you should buy.

Editor's Note August 14, 2020:
Checkout The Best Rowing Machine for a detailed review of all the top rowing machines.

Overall Take

If you're looking for a rowing machine that is more high-tech, this is the model for you. Not only does it come equipped with preset workouts, but it also connects to wirelessly to a variety of fitness apps. The ergonomic handle and adjustable footrests also make this rower comfortable to use.


In our analysis of 46 expert reviews, the Concept2 Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine placed 8th when we looked at the top 12 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

The dependable performance of the Concept2 Model D Indoor Rower has made it the best-selling rowing machine in the world for over 40 years. Used by elite athletes for competitive training, the versatile Model D fits in as well in fitness facilities and home gyms as it does in boathouses around the world. The Model D fits your goals and your budget, offering a low-impact exercise accessible to anyone of any age.

Expert Reviews

Expert Summarized Score

9.0
5 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.8
5,501 user reviews

What experts liked

We tested the Concept 2 in its typical environment: a gym (both home and shared). All in all, it’s a well-designed product. It doesn’t have to be plugged in, it takes very little maintenance and it’s light enough to be moved around. If you’re going to get a rowing machine, this is the one. It folds for storage and can even be broken down into two separate pieces. Caster wheels make moving and storage even easier. The backlit monitor includes a USB port, allowing you to offload your workout data to a flash drive.
- BestReviews
Easy to assemble, Comfortable to use, Effective and customizable full-body workouts.
- Verywell Fit
The Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine is one of the most modern and reliable pieces of machinery out there. It’s designed in a way that it dictates a natural, low-impact, and safe workout that doesn’t overstrain specific muscles or cause injury. Promoting natural movements, this rower’s construction trains all muscles equally and can provide you with an intense workout session that will have your muscles screaming within ten minutes. As all Concept2 models, it’s excellent for cardio and strength training, combining comfort and durability in one neat package. Its flywheel and spiral damper allow the user to adjust the level of tension and resistance easily and simply at any point during the workout, while its seat movement is smooth and doesn’t make noise.
- Top Fitness Magazine
The industry standard used by professionals, Suitable for all fitness levels, Extremely reliable, LCD console is accurate and has a lot of features, Quick and easy to assemble, Separates into 2 pieces for storage, Heavy 500 pound max user weight, Great customer service.
- Dr. Body Gadget
I love the Concept2 Model D since it provides an overall body workout without impacting your joints the way running or biking does and you’re able to achieve the results you want. I have used the Concept2 Model D for many different workouts such as back and arm days and it’s perfect for HIIT (high-intensity interval training) exercises. You can row at the pace you want and the resistance adjusts to your speed without having to stop and change any settings. If you haven’t noticed already, many local gyms especially in CrossFit, you’ll see a few Concept2 rowing machines setup. As an avid gym equipment owner, this is one of the few equipment that I would want to keep around if I had to downsize. It’s also one of the few equipment I would give a near perfect 5 star rating for. You can’t go wrong with selecting a Concept2 Rowing Machine.
- That Guy Reviews

What experts didn't like

Pricey, Large footprint.
- Verywell Fit
This isn’t the lowest priced rowing machine on the market.
- Top Fitness Magazine
Not as aesthetically pleasing as the WaterRower models, Some may consider the flywheel noisy considered to other types of resistance rowers, The seat could be considered too hard for some.
- Dr. Body Gadget
It's a bit pricey.
- That Guy Reviews

An Overview On Rowing Machines

If you’re looking for a great way to get in a full-body workout without having to leave the house, a rowing machine is your answer. This device offers a host of benefits, including the ability to burn calories while being easy on the joints. The actual act of rowing is also quite calming, which can help reduce stress. As you search for the best rowing machine, you’ll want to take a look at the machine’s construction, ability to control the amount of resistance and any extra features that improve the unit’s functionality.

Start off by examining exactly where you’re going to set up the rowing machine. Some models are bigger than others and you want to make sure the rower you select will fit in your available space. If you don’t have a lot of space, you can always go with a machine that folds when not in use. Make sure that the machine also has back wheels to making moving the rower easier.

Continue to review the construction of the rowing machine by checking its weight capacity. There are models that can only handle 250 pounds, as well as rowers that have a 500-pound weight capacity.

Determine how many levels of resistance the machine offers. The Sunny Health SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine has a dial that allows you to quickly switch between eight different levels of magnetic resistance. While eight levels are plenty for most, there are rowers that have as many as 16 levels of resistance.

Check how comfortable the rowing machine is to use. If you don’t feel good when you use it, you probably won’t keep up with your workouts. Look for a padded ergonomic seat, foam handlebars that are slip-resistant and a set of adjustable footrests. If you need, there are even models with extra-wide seats and thick handlebars.

Look at the technical capabilities of the rowing machine next. For example, the Fitness Reality Bluetooth Magnetic Rowing Machine not only has an LCD digital display for immediate feedback, but it also utilizes Bluetooth technology to connect to the complimentary My Cloud Fitness app. This app is available for both iOS and Android devices and aids in keeping track of your workouts.

Consider any extra benefits the rowing machine may have to offer. Some models are equipped with extra-long side rails, while others are made for additional exercises beyond just rowing. The Bluefin Fitness Magnetic Resistance Rowing Machine uses an aluminum flywheel and slide rail and no-touch magnetic resistance to keep it running quietly. That means you’ll be able to workout early in the morning or late at night without disrupting sleeping family members.

The Rowing Machine Buying Guide

  • Perform a weekly check on your rowing machine. Check that the screws and nuts haven’t come loose. If they have, take the time to tighten them. Use a lubricant on the screws and chains, so that they aren’t rubbing against each other and shaving off any metal.
  • Once per year, it’s a good idea to take the rowing machine apart to adjust and lubricate its inner parts. You should have received a product care manual with your purchase that can take you through this process one step at a time. If you didn’t and you don’t consider yourself handy, you can schedule an appointment with a mechanic and have them perform the necessary maintenance for you.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting your rowing machine regularly is extremely important. Choose an all-purpose cleaner with germ-fighting capabilities and use that and a lint-free cloth to wipe down the surface of the rower. The handlebars, padded seat and footrests are especially important, as these spots are the most likely to come in contact with your sweat and the dirt from your shoes. If you prefer to wipe down the machine with a moist cloth, you’ll need to spray the machine down with a disinfectant afterward. Let your rower dry completely before you resume using it for your workouts.
  • Store your rowing machine in a cool, dry location when not in use. Hot areas with extra moisture could cause the metal parts of the machine to rust.
  • Always check with your family physician before you begin any new workout routine, even one on a rowing machine. This is especially important if you have any pre-existing health conditions or are currently pregnant.
  • Set fitness goals for yourself before using the rowing machine for the first time. Start off slow, as you can always increase your goals later on. You can list how long you want to spend on the machine per day, how many calories you want to burn or how many strokes you want to achieve. Simply taking the time to put these goals on paper will help you achieve them.
  • No matter what your budget, you’re sure to find a rowing machine that can help you reach your fitness goals. The Sunny Health SF-RW5515 Magnetic Rowing Machine is one of the most affordable models. You’ll pay a moderate price for the Fitness Reality Bluetooth Magnetic Rowing Machine and the MaxKare Water Resistance LCD Monitor Rowing Machine. If you’re looking for a rowing machine with all the bells and whistles, you may not mind spending extra for the Bluefin Fitness Magnetic Resistance Rowing Machine, which has the highest price tag of the bunch.