With indoor rowing being one of the most effective full-body workouts, the Concept2 model D indoor rowing machine sits on top of the workout pyramid. Released after several improvements and iterations, this model is the most sought after machine rower, and one of the most reviewed fitness items ever designed.
The iconic rower is frequently used by professional athletes, providing a reliable and frictionless glide, as well as advanced and easy-to-follow performance monitoring options.
Equipped with an ergonomic handle, nickel-plated chain, and adjustable footrests, the Concept2 model D comes with a comfortable 14-inch high seat, adjustable monitor arm and perfect geometry.
The dependable performance took this rower to the first place of the bestselling list, firmly setting the standard for indoor rowing machines and competitive machine rowing. Available for what is a reasonably affordable price, it will last a lifetime, being durable enough to take the daily abuse of high intensity training.
Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with PM5 review
Placing this model at the top of our list, we acknowledge its undisputed status as the king-model of indoor rowing. And you can easily see why. With a sub-1,000 price, an advanced performance monitor, several connectivity options, and ultra-ergonomic design, this is a premium grade product through and through.
Sturdy enough to withstand 500 pounds of weight, the Concept2 Model D is unmatched in terms of reliability. The glide is smooth and frictionless, to a very satisfying degree. The resistance is predictable, constant, and evenly distributed regardless of your posture, grab, or angle under which you are pulling the handle.
In quite many respects, this is the most reliable indoor rower ever created. With a surprising lack of noise, it provides a lot of stability. Your feet are firmly attached, and the weight is evenly distributed throughout the glide thanks to a comfortable and ergonomic seat.
The flywheel provides several resistance options, nuanced enough for you to progress with ease from one to the next. The spiral damper allows you to easily adjust the airflow, so every stroke can feel exactly the way you prefer. This way, you are in full control of your exertion and the parameters of your workout. By extension, this is one of the main features that make the Concept2 Model D one of the best rowers for indoor competition and training, frequently used by Olympic athletes.
The handle, when I first tried it, felt strangely comfortable. I wasn’t aware of the exact reason though. It seems, however, that the comfort comes from having a neutral hand grip, which is allowed by the 10 degree bend of the handle. Smart.
Overall, the Concept2 looks dashing and modern, and it will definitely decorate any gym, commercial or otherwise.
Feature rich performance monitor
The performance monitor of the Concept2 Model D is several classes above those of other brands. It provides super accurate data, with a garden variety of features. The USB access allows for easy data storage, whether it is on your computer, smartphone or USB flash drive. Bluetooth connectivity allows the rowing machine to be paired up with a separate heart rate monitor (only compatible ones) for wireless heart rate monitoring. It also allows for machine-to-machine racing and Bluetooth connectivity to smartphones and computers (PC and Mac).
It has an adjustable monitor arm, and a backlit display that automatically illuminates just as you start with your workout. Designed to track speed, distance, pace, calories burned and split, it provides ton of fitness data you can later work with and map.
Convenient for storage
The storage feature allows the frame to separate itself in two, and the small wheels come handy when you want to move the parts around. I was trying the Concept2 with my wife by my side, and at 100 pounds she was capable enough of maneuvering it around with ease.
From what I was able to tell, the frame and rail look extra sturdy, as does the flywheel. The handle is attached to a nickel-plated chain which is easy to maintain and usually lasts longer than every other variety.
No matter how aggressively I tried pulling the handle, the machine didn’t move or show any signs of stress whatsoever. But I won’t advise you to take my experience as a measurement of quality and durability – many rowers work perfectly fine within the first month or so, only to show signs of wear and tear afterwards.
Buying a mat, however, to minimize the shock and protect your floor, is what I can in fact recommend. Doesn’t have to be the same mat they offer though. If you can find a cheaper option, definitely go for it. I’m sure it won’t make that much of a difference, if any.
Concept2 model D indoor rower features:
- Ergonomic design
- Durable frame, rail, and damper mechanism
- Adjustable resistance
- Comfortable seat
- Minimum noise when rowing
- Comfortable handle
- Nickle-plated chain
- Reliable feet platforms and straps
- Advanced and feature-rich performance monitor
- Can pair with smartphones, computers and other rowers
Concept2 Model D indoor rower specifications:
- Overall Length: 96” (244 cm)
- Width: 24” (61 cm)
- Seat height: 14” (36 cm)
- Monorail Length: 54” (137 cm), fits inseams up to 38″
- Chain: Nickel-plated steel chain
- Maximum User Weight: 500lb (227 kg)
- Space Requirements (when in use): Assembled: 8ft x 2ft (244 cm x 61 cm)
Also included is a 5-year warranty on the frame, and 2 years on all the moving parts as well as the PM5 performance monitor. The package will include tools and assembly instructions, as well as the Model D manual, along with the PM5 performance monitor user guide.
Don’t perform a test workout if you are not ready to buy though. This baby feels amazing when you build momentum, and you’ll want to get another high as soon as possible. The concept2 Model D indoor rower is, no doubt, the best rowing machine under $1000, and arguably the best indoor rower ever designed. With a reasonably affordable price considering what you’ll get, I cannot recommend it more.