Matrix Rowing Machine Review – Is It Actually Worth Your Money

Matrix is one of the leading names in the fitness industry – especially around Europe and the USA. Every gym freak out there has heard about this brand, which brings in all kinds of equipment – for both personal and group training. Whether you are after improving your fitness condition, recovering after an injury or shedding a few layers of fat, chances are the Matrix rowing machine will make your life easier.

The rower is widely used in gyms all over the world, yet there are lots of people willing to take this venture further and getting their own equipment at home. It makes no difference if you want to exercise in the comfort of your home while you watch television or you simply dislike the environment in a gym. A rowing machine will work on many muscular parts at once, hence its popularity.

Now, what do you need to know about this rower before committing to an investment?

A Few Words About Matrix

Matrix has begun its venture as a small family business. With time, it became one of the most popular names in the fitness industry, providing access to any type of equipment you can think of. Customers can choose between a wide variety of cardio machines, strength training equipment and setups. These days, Matrix is among the most awarded companies in the fitness industry.

The company has started as a supplier for gyms from all over the world. Gym owners and business owners choose to enhance their gyms with such equipment – some of them exclusively. It could be the premium performance, the durability or perhaps the approachable design with detailed instructions – suitable for all levels of experience.

Matrix has also pushed its venture to a more personal level. In other words, fitness enthusiasts do not have to sacrifice their workouts if they want to exercise at home. You do not have to improvise or stick to basic fitness, especially if you are after strength training too. From this point of view, people can enjoy the functionality and dynamic performance of Matrix equipment at home too.

Workout stations are among the best selling items from Matrix, yet fitness and cardio equipment are just as popular and this is where the rowing machine steps in. Built to raise to the highest demands out there, the rower will take both slim and overweight people, as well as beginners and intense fitness enthusiasts who will push it to another level.

Find out more about it before deciding whether or not it is worth your money.

Features of Matrix Rowing Machine

Sizing standards

It is highly recommended to double check the available room before considering a fitness machine for your home workouts. While some upright equipment could be relatively compact, the Matrix rowing machine requires quite a bit of floor space. When fully assembled, the rower will measure 87.6×21.5×38 inches. It is relatively long and you will also require a bit of space around it.

As you exercise, you will sit down on a moving seat and go forward and backward. You have to slightly lean backward as you reach the end and pull, meaning you will need a bit of extra space behind the machine too. Other than that, your arms will be fully bent during the same position, meaning your elbows may require extra space on the sides too. Double check the available room before spending your money.

Resistance type

The machine runs with magnetic resistance. In other words, you have a metallic flywheel and a magnet meant to produce the resistance for your workouts. If you have used a rower, you might be familiar with how it feels. If this is the first time you get one, you might want to sign up with a local gym and give it a few tries first – make sure it is what you are after.

All in all, you pull the handle to start. You will hear the flywheel spinning. The magnet inside will try to slow it down. As it gets close to the flywheel, the braking force gains in intensity. You can control the distance through a dial on the side of the machine, so you can basically adjust the resistance and intensity of your workout.

Adjustable resistance

The flywheel is based on brushed aluminum. Not only is it incredibly durable, but it also looks good. The flywheel is visible from the outside. You have a sleek and shiny look, which adds to the overall design. However, the appearance is not what truly matters for a fitness enthusiast, but the actual performance in the long run.

There are 10 different levels of magnetic resistance and you can adjust them with a knob. Start with the lowest setting and push your way up. You will not really notice the resistance as you begin but after a couple of moves. The last setting feels relatively strong, which is good – there is room for improvement. Besides, cardio is about consistency and repetitions.

Control panel

The control panel is clearly accessible on top of the rower. You can access it as you are close to it, but not from a fully extended position. The monitor may not have any fancy bells and whistles, but it gives you access to everything that really matters – all the numbers associated with your workout. The LCD display is backlit and measures 3.5×2.5 inches.

Some of the details you can read over the monitor include the time elapsed since you started your workout, overall distance, strokes per minute (SPM), watts, heart rate, stroke, calories and the 500-meter split. Reading the display is quite simple due to the large letters and numbers – you do not have to stop, but read it as you exercise.

Programs and settings

There are a few different programs you can choose from. For instance, you can go with the manual way if you want a long workout, but you can also choose interval training or a challenge. There are quick keys to provide access to these programs based on what you are hoping to achieve – no need to get lost through complicated settings.

The monitor has a backup battery for the memory, yet its power comes from the rowing movement. It can sync to a heart rate monitor through the telemetric receiver. You can also work on the drag factor – not always needed, but it gives you the possibility to set the machine based on what you are used to in your gym.

Design and build

The rower is virtually indestructible. Since such machines are common in gyms and can take hours of abuse on a daily basis for years, they will most likely provide an excellent option for your personal gym as well. The seat rail is based on aluminum and features a stainless steel combo to ensure even more strength.

The cord is thick and durable, while connections to the machine and the handle will last for ages. Matrix has implemented a so-called poly V belt in the drive system for durability. The seat is a bit soft and based on solid plastic. No matter how much you abuse this machine, you will never be able to outweigh the exposure it gets in a fitness center, so there is not much to worry about in terms of quality.

Comfort and smoothness

Comfort is essential when buying fitness equipment. If it feels too bad, you will stop using it after a while. These Matrix rowing machines will not let you down then. Magnetic resistance has a relatively silent stroke and ensures a comfortable movement. You can row inside your living room while watching television or while someone sleeps in another room.

The seat features an ergonomic design and is built with the shape of your body in mind. Compared to other rowing machines, it is a bit softer, yet solid enough to avoid breaking down. Harder seats are great for the overall performance, but a soft one will make the rowing experience more enjoyable – you are more likely to do it then.

Your feet must be stable, so you have an adjustable footrest. You can buckle in or release within a few seconds only. Compared to what you can find in other rowing machines, this one has a wider footrest for comfort and stability. Besides, the extra width ensures your thighs will not rub against each other. The handle is also long enough, while the seat features a locking mechanism to get off safely.

Setup and assembly

The Matrix rowing machine does not come assembled. The job is not too hard – you can do it without any help at all. The whole job should take less than an hour. Clear some space inside the room where you want the rower, play some music and get going. There is a manual of instructions with a few steps and an intuitive approach.

While the assembly itself is not very difficult, there are a few tools you might have to purchase separately if you do not have them around. They are not included in the package. You will need a Phillips head screwdriver, a few different Allen wrenches and a few open-end wrenches in different sizes. Luckily, they are not too expensive.


·         Comes with 10 different levels of magnetic resistance, so it is highly adjustable

·         Relatively silent and will not wake your family up

·         Comfortable to use due to the seat and smooth operation

·         Stronger resistance than in other similar machines

·         Well put together and based on solid materials


·         While highly portable, moving it upstairs or downstairs could be difficult

·         Assembly is easy, but it does not include the required tools

More Information on MATRIX Fitness Rower (Renewed)

Who Should Buy A Matrix Rowing Machine?

Matrix has initially designed its rowing machine (which has been through a few upgrades overtime) for gyms and fitness centers. It is built with high quality standards in mind and solid materials, only to withstand incredible abuse in such locations. Later on, it has expanded its operations towards residential gyms too.

The machine is suitable for anyone who wants to exercise at home. It makes no difference if you fit it inside your garage or a random room. It is not super large and can be moved around. It works out the entire body – arms, legs and rest of the body, so it makes an excellent machine for all your needs. You can also improvise and change the position (not actually recommended by Matrix) for extra workouts.

Whether you want a machine that will last you for many years or everyone in your family likes to exercise, the Matrix rower will ensure a solid and comfortable experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Still not sure about the Matrix rower?

Is the Matrix rower portable?

Yes, it is. One of the sides has a handle, while the other one has two small wheels. In other words, it is stable and will not move by itself, but you can also lift one end and move the wheels on the floor if you want to reposition it.

What is the maximum capacity it can take?

The rowing machine from Matrix can take up to 350 pounds in weight (just under 160 kilograms). It is more than enough for most people out there, including those who are overweight and need to lose a bit of weight.

How can I store this machine?

If you use it daily, it may not be worth storing it. But then, if you want it out of the way, you can store it in a vertical position. Bring it close to the wall and lift it. Make sure it stands on the end with no wheels. It is not the safest storage option, so keep pets and kids away from it.


Bottom line, the Matrix rowing machine has an excellent reputation among gym goers who are familiar with it from fitness centers. It is one of the most durable options out there. Being built for commercial purposes, it can obviously withstand the use in a home with no issues whatsoever.