I have had the Peloton Row now for over 8 months at the time of writing this post. I am hooked on rowing now, but the purchase of the row, delivery and my first few rows were not exactly smooth. If you are considering purchasing a Peloton Row or are new to using the Peloton Row, this is the Peloton Row review with everything you need to know.
Disclaimer, I am not a professional fitness instructor, doctor or medical professional. Check with your medical professional before starting any workout routine.
Who am I?
I am not an athlete, a body builder, a runner or a yogi. I am a somewhat in shape, nearing 40 year old mom of two. Prior to having my first child, I went to the gym regularly, attending weekly weight lifting and yoga classes. I purchased the Peloton bike a few months after my first child was born. I knew realistically I would never be able to get to the gym like I used to with a young child at home and working full time as a lawyer. I wanted to invest in some equipment to have at home to replace my gym membership. I quickly fell in love with the bike and cancelled my gym membership.
I used the Peloton bike and the workout classes for years until I was pregnant again. During my second pregnancy I was not as consistent with my workouts. As soon as I got the all clear by my doctor, I started using the bike (albeit, very slowly and gently). I was out of shape, missed exercising and had 40 pounds to lose.
It was about a year after I started working out again that the Peloton row was released. At that point I was working out regularly on the bike and trying to incorporate more weight lifting. After four years of using one piece of equipment at home, I was excited to add another piece of equipment to my home gym. I purchased the row at the end of December 2022, with delivery in early January.
I have lost the 40 pounds of baby weight gained during my second pregnancy and I am feeling good about my body. I am not trying to lose any weight. I want to be healthy and strong for me. I also need to be healthy for my kids, and be able to chase them and play with them all day.
I wrote about my workout schedule in a blog post you can find here.
My Journey with the Row: Every Step (really)
I have a lot of blog posts about the Peloton row, from delivery to taking the You Can Row program to a post about must have accessories. The Peloton row is still a fairly new piece of equipment to the Peloton family and when I was researching it before purchase, I couldn’t find a lot of in-depth reviews, so I started to document my purchase of the Peloton row here on the blog. I now have a very comprehensive list of posts about the Peloton Row.
I go into a lot of in-depth discussions about these topics, so I am listing the links here to these posts:
Testing and Purchasing the Peloton Row
I was lucky to be able to test the row in a showroom. For a full review of the experience testing in a showroom, check out my post here.
I actually had the opportunity to see the Peloton row in a showroom twice before I purchased. Getting a chance to use the machine and have guidance by a Peloton Showroom employee was a huge factor in my decision to purchase. Not everyone can get to a Showroom (the one near my home has actually since closed), so I hope my review of the Peloton row will be helpful if you are considering purchasing.
Delivery of the Row
The delivery of the row went fine, the delivery was earlier in the day than expected and the delivery men put the row together well. However, I was annoyed that all the packaging was left at my house- and it is a lot of packaging. (7 months later the packaging is still in my garage. I am slowly adding the cardboard to my compost bin so I am continually frustrated by the amount of packaging left) While this doesn’t seem like a big problem, check out my post here to see how much packaging was left for me to get rid of. For a detailed post about the delivery and a price adjustment that we received on the package we purchased, check out my post here.
First Impressions of the Peloton Row at Home
I posted about my first impressions after my first class (check out the full post here). After my first class, I was frustrated to say the least. The row had seemed so easy to use when I did a test in the showroom, but now, at home, without the help of the Peloton associate, I did not understand the metrics and I realized I had a lot to work on with my form. The biggest source of frustration was the metrics- which I could not grasp. The metrics were not intuitive and I could not find a description of the metrics which I could easily understand.
My frustration lead me to take the “You Can Row” program. The program involves taking certain classes spread out over three weeks. I really dedicated my time to focusing on taking this program and learning form. I highly recommend this program. I documented each week of the “You Can Row” program below:
I want to stress that there is a lot to learn when starting to use the row. I was very frustrated when I took my first class as I realized that I had a lot to learn and would not be working out on the row until I learned the form and metrics. However, once I took the “You Can Row” Program, I feel like I have a really good form and I understand the metrics. Once the three week program was over, I felt comfortable on the row and really began to enjoy using the machine.
I have completed the “You Can Row” Program and then started taking classes I picked. The row, like the bike, has classes taught by instructors, scenic rows (row through a scene that you pick), guided scenic row, and “Just Row” feature (row with a black screen)
There are many different types of classes (such as HIT, Endurance, Music based and intervals). The row has classes of all lengths from 5 minutes to 60 minutes.
I have taken all the different types of classes available at this time. I really like all of the classes, and can’t pick which one is my favorite. I have also taken classes with every instructor. I have my favorite row instructors- Alex Karwoski and Kate Wang. I can probably write an entire post about just instructors. But, in short, these two instructors are fun, upbeat and I just really like their energy in the classes.
Unlike the bike, there are not a ton of classes available on demand. Obviously the bike has been out for years, so there is a huge library of classes, which the row cannot compete with in terms of numbers. There also are not as many instructors on the row as there are with the bike classes.
Peloton is adding classes for the row all the time, so with a. little patience, there will be a larger library in the. future. But I wanted to point this out, as the number of on demand classes seems limited at this time.
I have some clear stand out classes that I love. Below is the list for you to check out. I tend to love classes (row, bike, yoga) with pop music, but Alex Karwoski has really swayed me into working out to classic rock music!
|My favorite classes (as of October 2023) are the following:|
|30 Minute Endurance Row from 11/10/22 Alex Karwoski|
20 Minute *NSYNC Row from 11/18/22 Alex Karwoski
15 Minute Pop Row 2/8/23 Katie Wang
15 Minute Classic Rock Row 2/7/23 Alex Karwoski
20 Minute Luke Bryan Row 7/6/23 Alex Karwoski
15 Minute 80s Row 7/13/23 Alex Karwoski
20 Minute HIIT Row 4/7/24 Alex Karwoski (I got a shout out at the very end of this class!)
In addition to the classes taught by instructors, there are scenic rows (you pick the location), guided scenic rows (an instructor is on a row in the water) and a “Just Row” feature, where you row with nothing on the screen.
My biggest complaint about the classes was that the classes were not available on the app. Peloton has now added the row to the app, so you can pick classes on the app before you get on the row.
My biggest complaint now (October 2023) is that I wish there were more warm up and cool down rows at this moment. I have found with the row that I really need to warm up before a class and that I really enjoy a cool down row (or a 10 minute stretch after). I find myself taking the same warm up and cool down rows over and over again. While new classes are always being added, I do wish they would add more of these types now.
Review of the Peloton Row Equipment
The Peloton row is a great piece of equipment. The screen is a great size and very clear. I love that the screen swivels (unlike my bike, which is an older version), so I can turn the screen when I do post row stretches off the row.
I really like that unlike the bike, you do not have to change any settings when you want to use it. I share the equipment with my husband, so with the bike I am constantly changing the settings (seat height, depth) when I use it after him. Not a huge deal, but I like that I can easily hop onto the row without any adjustments. The only adjustment you may have to make if you share the row is the height for your foot, which is very easy to adjust.
The row is also easy to get on and off. I find this particularly important when my toddler wakes up early and comes into my room in the morning when I am trying to row. I can pause the class, jump off, get him an iPad to distract him until I finish and jump back on.
The row is truly a great quality machine.
Pros and Cons, My Review of the Peloton Row
I have spent a lot of time thinking about the Peloton row, the good and the bad. I want to summarize concisely the Pro’s and Con’s if you are considering purchasing the row.
Rowing is a great work out
Rowing is a fun and mentally stimulating workout
Quality piece of equipment
Swivel Screen (my bike is an older version with no swivel screen)
Easy to jump onto the row/Minimal adjustments when sharing the equipment
Size of equipment may fit better in your space (ie/not as tall as a treadmill)
Form Assist feature makes focusing on form very easy
No special shoes needed (unlike the bike)
Limited number of classes (at this time, and compared to the huge library of classes available for the bike)
Not a multi use piece of equipment (*see below for more thoughts on this)
Metrics are not intuitive to learn
Good Form takes time to learn
Steep leaning curve to rowing and metrics
Not a multi use piece of equipment
I want to explain in detail what I mean about the row not being a multi use piece of equipment. I consider the bike a multi use equipment. With the bike, you can also adjust any cycle class to fit your physical abilities easily- for example, when I was pregnant I rarely lifted out of a seated position. On the bike, there is a “just ride” feature, which I like to do when I want to zone out and just pedal. Especially when I was pregnant, I would us the “just ride” feature and check my emails or watch a video on my phone.
With the row- I do not see being able to just zone out (and take it easy) or do too much adjusting to make the classes easier.
There is a real mental aspect of this workout. When using the row, I find myself having to focus both physically and mentally on the workout. Yes, there is a “just row” option and scenic rows, but you cannot just row and watch a video or check emails on your phone. Rowing is a serious workout, while you can have an easy class and just enjoy the row, I doubt you can just relax and zone out while watching a video on your phone.
Additionally, rowing involves a very specific form. You cannot just adjust the classes to make the row easier – besides simply going slower, you cannot change form to make the class easier.
Final Thoughts About the Peloton Row
I really enjoy the Peloton row. I get a great workout on the row- and I love that the row is both a physical and a mental challenging work out. You can not easily zone out on the row- You have to continually think about your form and adjusting to the prompts from the instructors.
The form assist is what sold me on the row and I think this feature is key. I thought the form assist would becoming distracting, seeing a cartoon character rowing on the side, but it isn’t. I feel confident in my form now after using the row consistently for the last few months, but I really like the reminder when I do mess up on my form. It is very easy to become a little off on your form when you are in a long row or recently changed your target pace. I love the reminder to watch my form and being able to easily see what parts of my row need to be corrected as I continue with the class.
If you are considering purchasing. Peloton row, take into consideration my thoughts as an owner. I have really enjoyed the Peloton row and would recommend the machine if you are considering purchasing it.
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