Stamina Products sells some of the world’s most affordable indoor rowers and other budget friendly fitness equipment. This international company was founded in 1987, and was among the first to develop infomercials for its products. Nighttime sales helped bring quick success, and by 1991 Stamina was among America’s most rapidly growing companies. Remember the ThighMaster endorsed by Suzanne Somers? That was produced by Stamina.
To keep prices low, Stamina makes its indoor rowers and other products primarily in Taiwan and China. Its US customer service is based in Springfield, Missouri.
Best Stamina Rowing Machines
Stamina Rowing Machines
Stamina currently builds more than a dozen indoor rowers for home use. Customers can choose between three major resistance types: magnetic, air, and hydraulic. Prices range from approximately $179 to $1199.
Stamina’s magnetic rowers include the Conversion II bike-rower, and the $999 Avari Programmable Magnetic rower with 12 preset workouts. A top Stamina air rower is the handsome Stamina X—a sleek red and black rower that has proven imensely popular with those looking for an air rower on a budget. For the best of both worlds, Stamina also makes a hybrid magnetic-air rower called the DT Pro.
Stamina still makes quite a few rowing machines that use hydraulic resistance—the most affordable type of rowing machine on the market. These units tend to fit adults of most heights, even when the machine frames are very compact. Of the pack the InMotion Rower is the most affordable (under $200), whereas the slightly more expensive BodyGlider we think delivers the best bang-for-buck.
Some Stamina products we’ve reviewed are nontraditional rowing machines. Stamina’s most expensive model is the magnetic Conversion II. It works not only as a rower, but also as a recumbent bike. At the other end of the price spectrum, some of the unique hydraulic models have oar-like “free motion” bars instead of the traditional pull-back handlebar.
- Resistance Types: This brand offers three main types of rowing machines: air, magnetic, and hydraulic. The air rowers are best for customized resistance, while the magnetic rowers with preset resistance levels are especially quiet. The hydraulic rowers are the smallest and cheapest.
- Resistance Ranges: Stamina has a rower for every exertion level. The best option that accommodates any strength level is the $549 Stamina X Air Rower, which automatically adapts to user effort. Some of the cheaper hydraulic rowers from this brand also provide a surprising range of force.
- Fit All Heights: Although many Stamina rowing machines are compact, they generally have long beams to accommodate tall trainees.
- Strong Frames: Many Stamina frames are built from steel and have aluminum beams.
- Compact Sizes: Stamina’s hydraulic rowers can support 250 pounds or more, yet can also be made compact for storage. The Orbital 1201 has an especially small footprint and weighs a mere 35 pounds.
- Cordless: Stamina monitors tend to use batteries instead of AC power, so the machines can be set up anywhere.
Price: Priced as low as $179, Stamina rowing machines are among the most affordable in the industry.
- Few Extras: Most Stamina rowing machines lack preset workout programming. They also lack accurate heart rate receivers, which some riders consider an essential feature.
- Cheaper Parts: These rowing machines are sometimes use plastic where other brands use feature metal. For example, Stamina rower seats sometimes get bearings with nylon casings instead of metal casings. These wear down quickly and compromise the smooth glide. The company also favours easily frayed cords over metal chains.
- Short Warranties: Stamina rowing machines have some of the shortest warranties in the industry. For example, the parts warranty on the BodyTrac Glider is just 90 days. Since the longevity of Stamina exercise products varies widely, it’s a good idea to read individual product reviews before making a purchase.
Stamina Products offers a wide variety of home rowing machines with low prices. These tend to have short warranties, but some get enthusiastic customer reviews. For this brand in particular, it’s worth reading individual product reviews. These rowing machines are all meant for different sorts of shoppers and deserve different expectations. These rowers tend to work best as quick fix, almost disposable machines. They are not built to last.
1. Stamina X Rower
The eye-catching red and black Stamina X Rowing Machine is among the brand’s best deals, and one of our favorites in the price range. The Stamina X is sized to fit almost anyone up to 250 pounds and its resistance adjusts to match the rider’s force. It produces smooth resistance with a fan flywheel and competes well with more expensive machines of its ilk. The Stamina X is a basic model, so you won’t get speakers, workout programs, or heart rate monitoring. However, the core of this machine is better than any other budget-conscious rower with more bells and whistles. It has a strong metal chain, a steel frame, and the seat glides on metal bearings instead of plastic wheels. The footplates also pivot to follow your natural motion (an underrated feature that is rare in this price range).Read the Full Stamina X Rower Review
2. Stamina ATS 1405 Air Rower
While Concept2 holds position as the top quality rowing machine maker on the market, the more we’ve looked at rowers from Stamina, the more we’re impressed with them from a value proposition standpoint. The Stamina ATS Air Rower 1405 is a prime example. It comes in at under $500 through most retailers, all while delivering a comfortable rowing experience. Its seat is a touch more firm than some alternative models, and its fan generates a bit more noise, but overall we’re still impressed. What’s more, it seems their customer service support is more reliable than that of several other brands, so if you happen to have any issues, they’re quick to help to correct the issue at hand.Read the Full Stamina ATS 1405 Air Rower Review
3. Stamina ATS 1402 Air Rower
When it comes to budget air rowers, there aren’t many options to choose from—especially ones that we expect to hold up for any reasonable length of time. Stamina is thankfully a key player in that category, consistently offering models that are reasonably well executed for a bargain-basement price. The Stamina ATS 1402 Air Rower is a fairly rudimentary machine, but it has some stellar features such as a sturdy chain drive and a compact design that’s well suited to smaller workout spaces. Though Stamina touts this rower as good for users from 4’9″ tall all the way up to 6’4″, we’ve read several reports from customers stating that if you’re over 6′ you might find this rower a bit cramped. It’s also rated for lighter rowers (max weight is 250 lbs), but this entirely normal in the budget rower category.Read the Full Stamina ATS 1402 Air Rower Review