Ergatta Rowing Machine Review (Smart Rower For Home Gyms)

Investing in a rowing machine for your home gym is a unique way to get in cardio workouts without having to leave the house. Rowing has a high potential for calorie burning and weight loss; it's great for cardiovascular health and builds strength throughout the entire body. 

Before you can experience these benefits and more, you need to buy a rower. One of the most advanced and best-reviewed rowers on the market is the Ergatta rowing machine. Many people compare this to the Peloton of rowing; it’s a pricey machine, but you certainly get what you pay for.  

Interested in learning whether or not the Ergatta rower is right for your home gym? Check out this complete Ergatta rowing machine review to find out if it’s worth the money. 

The Ergatta WaterRower is probably the most unique rowing machine on the market, so let’s cover some of the features that make it that way:  

Looks Like Furniture  

Ergatta designed this piece of fitness equipment to specifically look like a piece of furniture. That means this rower will look good in any room, even if you don’t have a designated gym space in your home, and according to the company,

“Ergatta belongs in the home, not the gym.” 

Unlike most rowers that are made from plastic and metal components, the Ergatta rower is constructed from Appalachian cherrywood that was sourced using sustainable methods.

As a result, not only will it look good in your home, but you can feel confident in the fact that it’s an environmentally-conscious piece of equipment.  

Digital & Connected 

Another feature that makes the Ergatta digital rower stand out from others in its class is the large display. It’s built with a 17.3” touch screen that delivers images in high definition. Thanks to Bluetooth compatibility, you can connect with others to compete in rowing races, or you can set your own goals and push yourself to accomplish them.  

ergatta review

Quiet & Smooth  

The Ergatta uses a water-resistance system, so many people assume that the movement of water while rowing will be loud and disruptive. This isn’t the case at all, and the company designed the water wheel to be nearly silent - even when rowing vigorously at a high resistance. This water rower is much quieter than an air rower, so you won't disturb anyone while you workout.

One great thing about rowers that utilize water resistance is that users have access to unlimited levels of resistance. Unlike magnetic rowers or hydraulic rowers that require a specific resistance setting, the Ergatta WaterRower increases in resistance the harder you row. 

Comfortable & Ergonomically Designed

This rower is fully adjustable to fit a variety of different body types. While many rowers have a 300-pound weight limit, the maximum weight limit of the Ergatta is a whopping 500 pounds. Plus, the rower supports a 40” inseam, which typically translates to up to 6'8" in height. 

But don't worry; even if you're petite, you can easily adjust the seat and pedal positions to fit your body type.  

Workout Apps, Compatibility & Subscription Options  

Ergatta has designed a new way to work out by giving users a game-like rowing experience. Instead of boring, instructor-led workouts, Ergatta offers a gaming-style experience that has been proven to be more motivational and interactive than traditional classes and training.  

You will have to pay a monthly subscription to gain access to the game-style workouts, which is $29/month. This is well worth it since the workouts will automatically adjust in difficulty based on your progress. The membership includes a variety of workouts ranging from virtual races to HIIT rowing.  

In addition to at least 5 new workouts each week, Ergatta is also constantly updating the software with new features and improvements.  

Advanced Heart Rate Monitoring  

The Ergatta has one of the most advanced heart rate monitoring systems. The machine is integrated with Strava, which is a social network for athletes, as well as Bluetooth-enabled heart rate monitors to track cardio health and progress.  

Compact & Portable  

Although you will need quite a bit of space while the rower is in use - the activated dimensions are 86” x 23” x 40” - the Ergatta folds up nicely for easy storage. With a storage footprint of just 23” x 22.5”, you can tuck the rower away until you’re ready to use it again. 

ergatta rower compact and portable

Ergatta Review – Is It The Best Interactive Water Rower For Home Gyms? 

Rower Specifications 

Assembled Dimensions 

86” x 23” x 40” 

Folded Dimensions 

23” x 22.5” 

Machine Weight 

103 lbs with water, 76.5 lbs without water 

Maximum Weight Capacity 

500 lbs 

Resistance Levels 

Unlimited 

Warranty 

Yes, 5 years 

Many people claim that the Ergatta Rower is the best interactive rower for home gyms, so that’s what I set out to determine when I first started using this machine.  

As with all of the cardio machines reviewed here, I focused on several different categories for deciding whether or not this rower is worth the money, and here’s what I found:  

Assembly & Maintenance  

Right off the bat, I was worried that this machine would take ages to set up, but those worries were put to bed immediately. Just like Ergatta says in the rower assembly manual, the machine took about 45 minutes to put together.  

The manual is extremely helpful and easy to follow, but if you’re struggling, there’s also a step-by-step video tutorial. The package comes with everything you need to assemble your rower, including bolts, nuts, Allen keys, and cables so that you won't need any additional tools or parts.   

In terms of maintenance, the main thing you need to do is keep the water within the rowing wheel clean and free from bacteria. Luckily, you don’t need to change out the water to make this happen. You just need to add a purifying tablet every 6 months or so.  

The even better news is that Ergatta supplies you with these tablets for life, completely free of charge. So if you run out, you just have to use the tablet request form. Other than that, the only required maintenance consists of wiping sweat from the rower and rails after workouts.  

Workouts & Performance 

For a machine that costs this much, you’d expect smooth and seamless rowing motion. That’s exactly what you get from the Ergatta. Compared to cheaper rowers, there’s a noticeable difference in the ride quality.  

When I hopped on the machine for the first time, the digital software prompted me to go through the account and profile setup.

Once that was complete, the next step was to complete a short rowing workout, which took about 15 minutes. 

ergatta workout and performance

From that workout, the rower gathered information on my fitness level and used that info to place me in the appropriate “intensity zone” for future workouts.  

I personally love that this rower delivers workouts based on a user’s current fitness level. The software is designed to reevaluate my status every 10 workouts, and it then adjusts the intensity level based on progress. In my opinion, this feature makes the Ergatta one of the “smartest” rowing machines available.  

I also love that there is a huge variety of workouts available. The software is constantly being updated, and new workouts are added every week, including virtual races, interval sprints, goal-based training programs, and rowing games. My personal favorites are the virtual races, which allow me to race 8 other Ergatta users in the same fitness category.

Design & Features  

There’s really not much to say about the Ergatta’s design other than the fact that it’s AWESOME. The wood frame really stands out as a statement piece, but it also manages to fit well within any room. Ergatta designed the rower to look like furniture, and that they did! 

Aside from the sleek look, the feature that stands out most to me is the foldable design. Because of its good-looking aesthetics, I decided to set up the Ergatta in my living room. When I have guests over, I can easily fold the rower flat and lean it up against the wall to free up space.  

Using The Console  

Ergatta did an excellent job of developing advanced software and implementing it into a console that’s easy to use.

Even if you don’t consider yourself tech-savvy, you shouldn’t have any trouble figuring out the console and its features.  

All of the software features can be navigated using the 17.3” touchscreen tablet that’s mounted for easy viewing.

You can even connect a pair of Bluetooth headphones to listen to the 6 music genres available within the Ergatta software. 

Connecting devices via Bluetooth is fast and easy, and I had no trouble using any of the tech features.  

ergatta rowing machine console

I don’t love the fact that there’s no heart rate monitoring device included, but that didn’t stop me from using my own heart monitor and connecting it to the rower through Bluetooth. The only devices you can’t connect are those using ANT+ or those requiring a pin, but Ergatta is working on updates to the software to change that.  

One really great console feature is that it supports an unlimited number of accounts. That means that multiple people can row using a single membership, so if your roommates or family members want to get in on the action, you can all use the same membership and switch between profiles.  

Price & Warranty  

The high price is probably the #1 thing keeping people from buying the Ergatta rowing machine. Yes, it’s expensive, but the cost is totally justified if you ask me.  

The advanced software, the game-like rowing workouts, the option for competing with other Ergatta users, and the sleek design all make the Ergatta worth every penny. If you’re not willing to pay $2000+ upfront for a cardio machine, Ergatta offers financing options that allow you to pay a fixed amount each month until the rower is paid for.  

In addition to a 30-day risk-free trial period, Ergatta offers a 5-year warranty as well as options for additional protection plans. This isn’t the best warranty policy for such an expensive machine, but as long as you treat the rower as you should and keep up with maintenance, it’s unlikely that you’ll have any issues with the machine’s craftsmanship.  


Pros & Cons Of The Ergatta Rower 

Before getting into the features and functions of the Ergatta rowing machine, let’s cover some of the positive and negative qualities of this rower.  

The first and biggest negative aspect of the Ergatta rower is the high price tag. Not only is the upfront cost of Ergatta machines high, but similar to Peloton bikes, you have to pay for a monthly subscription to access the rowing workouts. That means this rower isn’t for anyone who’s on a strict fitness budget, so if that applies to you, you might as well stop reading now.  

That being said, you can actually save money in the long run by investing in a rower for your home gym and ditching your gym membership. Once you’ve decided whether or not this rower falls within your budget, be sure to weigh these pros vs cons: 

The Good 

  • High-end rower that delivers challenging workouts 
  • Ergatta rowers make working out fun; the software workouts are designed to “gamify” your fitness routine 
  • Aesthetically-pleasing design features that work well in any room 
  • Phenomenal customer support and fair return policy 
  • Built with a 17.3” high-def touch screen for interactive, immersive workouts 

The Bad 

  • High initial cost and monthly subscription payments required  
  • Software options lack customization 
  • High shipping costs in some locations 

Comparisons With Similar Rower Brands 

It may be one of the best-rated advanced rowing systems on the market, but it’s not the only one available. Here are a few similar rowing machines that are also worth checking out:

Ergatta Vs WaterRower

WaterRower Vintage Oak Rowing Machine with S4
  • Flywheel sits in enclosed water tank to...
  • Series 4 performance monitor tracks workout...
  • Handcrafted rowing machine with "water...
  • Stores upright; measures 83 x 22 x 21 inches...

The Vintage Oak Rowing Machine from WaterRower is expensive, but it doesn’t break the bank quite as much as the Ergatta rower. It has similar sleek wooden design features, so it looks great in any room. However, the WaterRower doesn’t have a digital display or app compatibility, which explains the lower cost, so you won’t get the same interactive rowing workouts. 

Ergatta Vs Cityrow Go Max

Another option is the Cityrow Go Max, which is almost identical in functionality and price point compared to Ergatta. This rower looks sleek enough, but it doesn’t have the same wooden frame design that makes the Ergatta stand out from the rest.  

Ergatta Vs Concept 2

Concept2 Model D Indoor Rowing Machine with...
  • This item benefits from an Extended 90 Day...
  • Low impact workout that engages all major...
  • Track your progress with real-time reliable...
  • Designed to fit most users: 14-inch seat...

Concept 2 is a big name in the rowing industry, and the RowErg model is a well-respected rower that anyone would be lucky to have. The main difference between the Concept 2 and the Ergatta is that the Concept 2 rower utilizes air resistance instead of water resistance. So deciding between the two really comes down to whichever one you prefer most.  

Ergatta Vs Hydrow

The rower from Hydrow is another sleek, smooth machine that comes equipped with a high-def digital screen. There are a few differences between these machines, but the main one is that the Hydrow Rower has a much lower weight limit of just 375 pounds.  


People Also Ask (FAQs)

Can you use Ergatta rower without a subscription? 

A membership is technically not required to use the Ergatta rower, but the entire point of choosing this machine is to have access to the interactive workouts that come along with it. Here’s what Ergatta has to say about not having a membership 

“Without a membership, you won't be able to access the Ergatta software, which includes our personalized workout library, racing, and your saved workout history. In the absence of a membership, you will still be able to use your tablet for its basic functionality. The tablet will still display your basic real-time workout metrics such as distance, time, strokes per minute, etc., but it will not provide the features that make Ergatta truly unique and great.”  

Does Ergatta have a monthly subscription? 

If you choose to pay for the membership, then yes, there is a monthly subscription. According to the company,

“The Ergatta membership costs $29 per month. You also have the option to purchase an annual membership for a discounted $319 for the first year (one month free).  After your first year of membership, the discount will expire and the annual rate will be $348.”

Where is Ergatta made?  

Ergatta was founded in 2019 by Alessandra Gotbaum and Tom Aulet. The company is headquartered in Brooklyn, NY, but the rowers are made by the partner company, WaterRower, in Rhode Island.  


Conclusion

That’s it for my review of the Ergatta rowing machine. To recap, this rower is one of the more expensive options on the market, but the high price is justified in more ways than one. 

The rowing motion is smooth and seamless, the frame is designed to fit all body types, and the large high-def display gives users access to game-like rowing workouts that are super interactive and motivational.  

If you ask me, this rower is 100% worth the money, but if it doesn’t fit within your budget, feel free to check out our guide to other affordable water rowing machines.

Paul J