Summary: The user comments of the Concept 2 Model D Rowing Machine have more 5-star ratings than any other rower – or any other exercise machine for that matter. This is a premium product, with engineering and electronics up there with the best commercial models. It folds up between uses, and is compatible with software (Polar or their own Concept 2 trackers). If you can afford the upper-end price tag, this is a wonderful piece of kit.
Check the picture gallery – including close-ups – and that impressive (and enthusiastic) user feedback on the amazon.co.uk product page now!
The engineering behind the Model D is the same used by Olympic athletes. This is designed for rigorous training day after day, and can handle the most demanding home users at a breeze. This is reflected in a full 5-year warranty which comes with this model.
It is a bigger rowing machine, with a footprint of 274cm by 122cm. It can handle users up to 227kgs (that’s 35 stone!). The frame pivots in the middle, so it stands upright when not in use. There are small wheels to help you move it into place – though keep in mind that this product is heavy.
A lot of thought has gone into the extras with this model. The foot rests are adjustable to suit your foot size, and the handle is ergonomically designed (rather than a straight pole). The flywheel features a spiral dampner, which lets you easily change the resistance level.
Where the Concept Model D really stands out is with the ‘performance monitor’. This is way more detailed than a standard console, giving you 5 different data-set views, USB compatibility (to transfer data to the Concept software) and compatibility with Polar trackers. You can set up your own programs, and also play ‘games’ (preset rowing programs where you hit milestones as you row). The PM5 also connects to popular training and map apps – see the FAQ below for more on this.
The amount of 5-star feedback as a proportion of the total is amazing. I am basing this on the UK amazon site, though the US site has 1000+ more positive reviews too. Only one negative, who found it uncomfortable and did not elaborate on that.
I always look for a theme that runs through all of the comments – and in this case that theme describes this as an ‘all round impressive machine’. The durability, console and design all come in for praise over and over. One commenter also mentioned the service and delivery from amazon (surprising, people are quick to criticize this, though rarely compliment it!).
This rowing machine is aimed at people that want the best – and understand that the higher end price tag is great value when you consider how many years your rowing machine will last. This model combines the club-standard spec with the latest electronics. It’s own console is state of the art for LCD display units. If you prefer to connect with popular apps, monitors and maps – then this is all part of the deal.
Judging by the delighted buyers, it is more than worth the extra money. I challenge you to find anyone that thinks they did not get great value for money.
Check out the impressive picture gallery, and see that positive user feedback for yourself now on the dedicated amazon.co.uk product page.
Concept2 have their own app – called ErgData – which works with their PM5 console and also connects with your devices. You can also use popular group apps, map apps and trackers with your rower. Options cover all kinds of workouts and include Zwift, asebsei, Krew, Kinomap and Regatta. New apps are coming out all the time, so this list is sure to grow.
The manufacturers advise 227kgs (35 stone) as the maximum weight. Model D has been verified to European safety standards for 135kgs. If you have an inseam (inside leg) of more than 38 inches, Concept2 advise that you contact them for an extra-long rail. The average height of someone with a 38″ inseam is 6 foot 7 inches.
Yes – you get a full 2 year warranty with this rower covering all the parts. The frame comes with an extended 5 year warranty.
Assembly is minimal with the model D. There are just 8 screws required, plus connecting the monorail with the front of the unit. This is super-easy, it has been mentioned as a positive multiple times in the feedback / comments at different resellers.
If you are dedicated, you could burn up to 600 calories per hour of rowing on a Concept2 machine. This is a tough workout, with 30 minutes being more realistic. This would burn somewhere between 200 and 300 calories. Factors which come into play include how vigorously you row, your weight and current fitness levels.
While this machine is best in class, there are some viable alternatives. These are especially useful during those times it is sold out – or for those that can’t currently justify the outlay.
Here are some popular high-spec rowers:
No, this rower has a flywheel, along with ‘Spiral Damper’ technology. The resistance is smooth, realistic and will adjust to keep up with your improving fitness levels. Water rowers are popular alternatives, you can find out more and see a comparison of the different models over on my best water rower page.
These machines can be separated into two parts without needing any tools. While this is not really the same as folding, it does allow you to get your rower out of the way quickly and easily. There are wheels underneath, which let you move the machine into place.
Concept 2 Model D with the PM5 console sets the standard for rowing machines. There is no ‘club style’ or ‘commerical level’ marketing speak with these machines – they are 100% the top of their category, and appear in gyms / fitness centres throughout the world.
You get a big, robust rower with a long list of small touches. You can also use your own iPad, phone or tablet to connect with popular group training, coaching and map apps.
The price point is higher than for many alternatives. When you consider this over the potential 10+ years you’ll get from your Concept 2 rowing machine, it represents better value than you get from budget rowing machines.
Check out that impressive picture gallery, and read the feedback from people that are using one right now – over on this dedicated amazon.co.uk product page.