BodyCraft VR100 Pro Rower Review
Quick Take (Discontinued)
The BodyCraft VR100 was the brand’s entry level rower that has since been replaced by the VR200 we reviewed here. They’re no longer in the market, though if you stumble across a used one, or one hiding in a corner of a discount fitness equipment warehouse somewhere, we’re keeping this review up to provide you with our thoughts on the unit. BodyCraft rowers are quite well made and well reviewed overall, though not without their flaws.
BodyCraft’s VR100 Rower is a very basic rowing machine designed for home use. It produces hybrid resistance with a fan and magnetic current. The harder you work, the stronger the resistance becomes. The VR100 is the simplest rowing machine in BodyCraft’s collection. Some of its best features are an airplane-grade aluminum rail and a lightweight rubber-coated aluminum handle. This fitness machine is very basic though in terms of programming, with the monitor only supporting Manual mode.
Will this machine fit your body? It has a weight limit of 250 pounds, but the BodyCraft VR100 can fit almost any height. The seat can travel 44” from the pedals, making this good for people up to 6’10” or so. Originally BodyCraft sold this unit for $799. The online price is now $599. Is it the best rowing machine for you? Here are some considerations.
Although this rowing machine is pretty inexpensive, it lasts a long time according to customer reviews. Here are some other reasons people like the BodyCraft VR100.
- Data: A monitor shows time, distance, strokes, calories and heart rate. This feedback is minimal yet covers the essentials. The monitor has adjustable height and adjustable angle.
- Heart Rate Receiver: The VR100 can work with a wireless heart rate transmitter. A compatible transmitter is sold on the bodyCraft website for $49.95.
- Handlebar: The handlebar is made from lightweight aluminum. It’s coated with rubber and promotes an ergonomically correct grip.
- Lower Seat: The seat height of 15.5″ is relatively low and preferred by many rowers.
- Adjustable: The seat travels 44″ from the pedals, making this rowing machine a good fit for people up to 6’10”. The VR200, which costs more, can only comfortably accommodate up to 6’2″.
- Foldable: BodyCraft rowers can be folded to save space. The VR100 becomes especially compact, and the frame has wheels for easy repositioning.
- Strong Frame: A high-strength aluminum beam supports up to 250 pounds.
- Fan: A perk of this and other air resistance rowing machines is the built-in breeze. As you row, you power the fan. The more intensely you work, the stronger the fan.
The BodyCraft VR100 Rower is a very simple rower. It only has manual mode, whereas other rowing machines have lots of built-in workout programs. Here are some other possible drawbacks.
- Resistance: The resistance is limited to six levels. Some people will master the machine rather quickly. Plus, the resistance isn’t physiologically like that of actual rowing… so if you’re training for outdoor rowing, then this machine probably isn’t your best option.
- Warranty: The warranty is rather short. Residential buyers get lifetime protection for the aluminum frame but only one year for the parts. Labor is only free for 90 days.
- Cheaper Parts: A few cheaper parts jump out when we read the specs list for the VR100. One example is the nylon belt used for the handle drive. Metal would be a more durable option. Also, you’ll glide with nylon rollers instead of metal rollers.
- Heart Rate Monitor Inaccurate: Customers have observed that the heart rate monitor is inaccurate.
- Lower Capacity: The maximum user weight capacity is 250 pounds. That is very light for a rowing machine.
The BodyCraft VR100 Rower is a remarkably durable budget rowing machine despite having some cheaper parts. It is sized for people small and tall. If you don’t care about workout programming, and you just want aerobic exercise, then it’s a pretty good option for just $599.
Tip: If you choose this rowing machine and want wireless pulse monitoring, don’t bother buying the BodyCraft wireless heart rate monitor. Instead buy a wearable medical-grade device that you can take anywhere; it will be more accurate and more useful.
Frequently Asked Questions
68" L x 17" W x 22" H
Maximum User Weight Capacity