As a leader in the home fitness market, it was only a matter of time before Peloton jumped on the latest trend by introducing a rowing machine to their already impressive lineup. Now, after years of speculation, the first Peloton rower, called The Peloton Row, is finally slated to hit the market in December.
The announcement isn’t entirely surprising but it is not without its share of controversy either. The stir around the Peloton rowing machine stems from its eye popping $3,200 price tag. That puts it well above even the rest of the existing top tier models from other brands and that’s before you figure in the additional $44 monthly All-Access Membership required to take full advantage of their online classes and other content.
Of course that All-Access Membership isn’t required to use the Peloton rower but the company has built its reputation around its world-class interactive content so you won’t really get the whole Peloton experience without it. On the plus side, if you already happen to have All-Access Membership with any other Peloton equipment, you’ll be able to access it on the Peloton Row without paying extra.
That’s little consolation to the majority of the market, however, especially in light of the current economy. As a result, many in the industry are wondering aloud whether the Peloton rowing machine is really going to find a niche among home fitness enthusiasts or whether the company may have priced themselves out of the market before they’ve even gotten started.
From what we’ve been able to learn so far, it seems like the Peloton Row will have plenty to offer. While its prices may be prohibitive, Peloton has never skimped on quality with any of its products and it would seem that the first Peloton rower is no exception.
It has a sleek design and can be stowed vertically using the upright wall anchor, helping it conform to any size space. An ergonomically designed seat and handlebars ensure maximum comfort and its electronically controlled resistance makes the Peloton rowing machine nearly silent so you can use it without disturbing the whole house. It also features a 23” screen that swivels up to 45 degrees, so you can easily take advantage of the off machine classes available through the Peloton app.
Like their other equipment, with the Peloton Row you can participate in trainer led classes or enjoy a personalized Just Row session. No matter which option you choose, the Peloton rowing machine offers Form Assist, a unique feature that provides real-time assessment and correction of your stroke so that you can make any necessary adjustments to help achieve the ideal form. After class, you’ll get a Form Rating and Insights dashboard that breaks down your performance and progress and gives you tips for future sessions.
It’s this kind of integrated approach that has made Peloton a standout in the home fitness market and which keeps devoted customers returning. While there are other brands that provide online classes and other training tools, nobody does it quite like the folks at Peloton and many people feel like that makes their equipment worth the considerable investment.
Rowing itself has taken off in recent years as more people have discovered its many advantages. It’s the only perfect full body workout experience, working 86% of your muscles, and at the same time it’s low impact, making it ideal for those with joint issues or other physical limitations.
As a result, there has been something of a boom in the market for home rowing machines in recent years. Familiar names including Hydrow, NordicTrack, CITYROW and Ergatta have all gotten in on the popular trend and each offers models ranging in price from $800 or $900 to over $2,000 for the Hydrow Rower.
All include features such as spacious monitors and many also give you the ability to access a variety of workouts online. Some fold for easy storage and have built-in wheels to make transportation easy and others, such as the Ergatta, are designed with sleek wood and attractive built-in water resistance tanks so that they make an attractive addition to your home decor.
The NordicTrack RW900 is another unique option which incorporates an innovative SpaceSaver design allowing it to fold up after use, as well as a 22” HD smart touchscreen display and 26 coach controlled resistance levels that can mimic real life water resistance. Interactive personal training is available with an iFit membership.
CITYROW offers two options, the CITYROW GO Max and CITYROW CLASSIC, both of which offer similar features at a reasonable price. The Go Max has a wood frame and water resistance as well as a 19.5” touchscreen and a wide selection of on demand and trainer led workouts. The CITYROW CLASSIC is their more basic model which allows you to link directly to your tablet or smartphone via Bluetooth rather than using a monitor.
So there are many competitors out there, most of which are considerably less money. TIme will tell if the $3,000+ is a deal breaker or something people are willing to spend for the experience.
Up to now all of the buzz about the Peloton Row has centered on its considerable price tag and that’s not surprising, but the question remains about whether it will be worth that price.
It’s a major hurdle to get past but it would seem that Peloton is willing to take that chance despite its recent financial struggles, hoping to get in on the latest fitness trend. Their integrated approach, offering convenient and engaging workouts, has certainly worked with their other products and they’re banking on that same approach working for the Peloton rowing machine as well.
It’s safe to say that the Peloton rower should be on a par with the company’s other products, including the Bike/Bike+ and Tread, but is that enough to make consumers buy in?
For diehard Peloton fans, the answer will likely be yes, but for the average consumer who can’t necessarily afford a $3,000+ investment it may be a tougher draw. For now, we’re eager to see how the Peloton rower will live up to the hype and exactly where it will fit in the growing selection of rowing machines that are bringing the popular fitness trend to home gyms.
UPDATE: Summer Rowing Machine Sales are going strong!
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