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NordicTrack RW600 Rower Review

Quick Take

Straight out the gate for 2021, the NordicTrack family of fitness equipment is bringing new gear to the race for best rowers, and the RW600 is looking strong. With the RW600 and the RW700 as brand new models, they lead into the line-up capped off with the RW900. Consistently ranked well across the board, NordicTrack machines continue to bring the iFit Coach interactive workout package, and for 2021, include financing offers such as 0% APR for 36 months.

Replacing the NordicTrack RW500, the new entry-level model brings a 10-inch Smart HD Touchscreen instead of the tablet offered in the earlier version, and it does rely more heavily on the iFit Coach programming. Priced at $999, the RW600 purchase comes complete with a 1-year iFit Family Membership valued at $468. Annual subscription fees will be required after the first year, but of course the machine works with or without that app package. Meanwhile, users get a unique offering here with 26 resistance levels by way of both Silent Magnetic Resistance, as well as adjustable air. This combo puts a whole new spin on the burn earned by rowing.

And there’s no question, rowing workouts rock and roll the caloric burn. A Harvard Medical School study published in Harvard Health Publishing reports that a 30-minute session of stationary rowing can burn up to 210 calories in a 125-pound person, 252 calories in a 155-pound person, and 294 calories in a 185-pound’er. This is significantly better than general, or even vigorous weightlifting, and matches well against stationary bicycling, with the added benefit of strength work to boot.

Lots of great rowers are on the market obviously, with a whole slew coming aboard the live-training route and style. Our top rated rowers bring a combination of price, performance, and durability. With that in mind, read below to see how the NordicTrack RW600 stacks up.

 

Pros

Great Price
Both Silent Magnetic Resistance and Air
Great warranty

Cons

Smaller Screen
No wireless heart-rate monitor included

Our Review

The NordicTrack RW600 rowing machine serves as the company’s entry model at $999, with a 1-year Family Membership to iFit Coach included. That said, the NordicTrack name is well known in fitness circles and certainly brings a strong machine, whatever the price-point.

Measuring 87.02 x 22 x 47.24 inches, the RW600 brings a good-sized footprint relative to lesser models and is certainly something to consider when planning its location in the home. In-box product weight is 117 pounds, and the machine is engineered with front-mounted transport wheels for easy wheeling about the home. The user weight capacity of 250 pounds is also something of which to take note as it might be at the breaking point for some customers seeking a weight-loss machine.

Where the lower price seems to come into play is the 10-inch Smart HD Touchscreen, as opposed to the larger screens offered by more expensive units. That said, a 10-inch Smart HD Touchscreen is probably sufficient for most users. With an adjustable console, the rower also has an auxiliary audio port with two, 2-inch digitally amplified speakers. Bluetooth Audio capabilities include wireless headphone connectivity, whether to be used for music from a personal device, an app, or the iFit Coach program.

As with most NordicTrack machines these days, the RW600 is built iFit-enabled and ready to go. The iFit workout package offers live-streamed workouts as well as trainer-controlled options, meaning professional trainers in remote locations can control the resistance of the machine during the group, or solo, workout.

With nearly limitless workout variety, the iFit program offers a wide variety of professional trainers who specialize in any form of exercise from HIIT to yoga. On-demand rowing is also available via a constantly expanding library of streaming workouts, as well as new programs and routes added daily. These workouts can be generic or tailored to the user. The iFit Family Membership comes with up to four user profiles, each of which can be suited to the size, needs, and goals of the individual. Personalized coaching includes lifestyle guidance, such as nutrition and sleep. One potential downside to this model is that the 10-inch Smart HD Touchscreen does not swivel about, and is a bit small. The iFit programs are quite diverse and do include yoga, and the ability to see the screen from the floor in other positions would be of value.

Designed for serious rowers, the RW600 sports 26 levels of digitally controlled Silent Magnetic Resistance, as well as adjustable air, a unique combo which lets users better personalize the intensity level via the inertia-enhanced flywheel. Incorporating a SpaceSaver® Design, the machine folds away easily. Machine-wise, the unit comes with an oversized steel seat rail, ergonomic seat, and oversized, pivoting pedals. Adjustable nylon foot straps and a SoftTouch™ Ergonomic Handle put the finishing touches on the machine in terms of user comfort.

As with most of the NordicTrack line-up, the RW600 comes with a 10-year frame warranty, with two years for parts, and one year for labor. This compares very nicely with rival brands, whose warranties can run the gamut of 1-year to lifetime.

Positives:

Here are some features that make the RW600 Rowing Machine attractive.

  • A 1-year iFit Family Membership: Valued at $486, this makes the price nicer yet, and iFit subscription rates are comparable to other apps.
  • Great financing deal: Offered at $999 with an included year of the iFit Family Membership plan, the model is also offered at 36 months 0% APR.
  • Easy Folding: With a great spacer saver design, the rower folds up and stores without hassle.
  • Both Magnetic and Air Resistance: This is typically and Either-Or situation, and the fact that the RW600 offers both is significant.
  • 26 Levels of Digital Resistance: Certainly enough for most rowers, the RW600’s resistance levels afford a solid burn for just about anyone in the market.
  • Ergonomic Handle: The RW600 ergonomic rowing handle supports a natural rowing position.
  • Easy to Store: The RW600 easily divides into two sections for storage.
  • Transport Wheels: The rower features wheels attached for added mobility.
  • Good Warranty:  NordicTrack is offering a 10-year warranty on the frame, two-year on parts, and one-year for labor.

Negatives:

  • No Wireless Heart Rate monitor: The iFit package does avail one to heart rate monitoring, but the user will have get that separately.
  • Smaller screen: While a 10-inch Smart HD Touchscreen isn’t puny, it is coming along at a time when rival brands are using much larger screens as a plug.

Our Conclusion

The NordictTrack RW600 is an excellent choice for budget-conscious home fitness fans who want a simple and solid rower. Certainly sufficient for even advanced rowers with 26 levels of Silent Magnetic Resistance, the unique combination of adjustable air brings a novel add-on. Customers should also check out the RW700, which is the NordicTrack family’s next in-line rower with slightly larger features.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the assembled dimensions of the RW600?
A: The rowing machine measures 87.02" x 22.0" x 47.24 and weighs about 117 pounds.
Q: How many workout programs does the NordicTrack RW600 have?
A: The RW600 is iFit-enabled and doesn't come with additional built-in programs.
Q: Is rowing better for warm-up or cool-down?
A: The great thing about rowing is it can be for either, both, or serve as its own workout program.

Rating: 78%

Resistance Type

Magnetic

Resistance Level

26

Bluetooth

Yes

Dimensions (inches)

87.02" L x 22" W x 47.24" H

Folding

Yes

Maximum User Weight Capacity

250 lbs

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