How To Choose The Correct Rower

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How to choose the correct rower to suit your requirements.

Comparing indoor rowing equipment can be an overwhelming process, especially when you don’t know where to start or what to consider.

  • Should you be considering air, water or adjustable Fluid Resistance?
  • Can the rower resistance be adjusted?
  • To get a harder workout, will the rower offer a way to increase the resistance load at any stroke rate or will the load only increase when increasing the rate/speed of stroke?
  • If rowing slowly, does the rower offer any resistance load or do you need speed to get any resistance?

FDF FluidRowers stand out ahead of the other rowers. Designed and engineered to challenge and outperform all other indoor rowers when compared against two of the most commonly purchased fitness equipment rowers?

In the following table, we compare FDF Adjustable Fluid Resistance rowers against other fitness rowers. Here, we will compare each resistance system, resistance options and construction.


Feature FDF FluidRower Other Water Based Rowers Air Rowers
System Design Patented twin tank with triple bladed stainless steel impeller to create adjustable Fluid Resistance rowing. Single tank with two blade plastic impeller. Chain driven internal flywheel fan with airflow interaction.
Resistance Resistance level 4, 5 or 10 depending on the rower that can be changed at the turn of a dial for multi-user interval training. Water must be manually added or removed to change resistance level. Very little ability to change resistance ±10% at any given stroke rate. At slow to medium stroke rate virtually no resistance.
Tank Performance Internal baffles maintain resistance while providing a realistic on water rowing feel and sound. Smooth walled internal tank allows water to accelerate as it free flows without respect to length and rate of stroke. Air rushes noisily through the fan blades as the metal chain is driven with each stroke.
Tank Engineering Two-part tank joined by durable tank seal and screw fixings. Two-part tank glued together. There are many inexpensive imitations. As dust gets sucked into the machine’s vents, the performance characteristics change.
Stroke Profile Load is immediate, constant catch on initial pull with tank baffles holding the resistance during second half of the stroke to produce a more realistic on-water rowing feel throughout entirety of action. Resistance typically peaks at around 35% of the stroke pull and falls away as water freely accelerates within the tank. Resistance does not increase proportionately with speed of the pull-through. Resistance lag at beginning of stroke followed by a rapid increase to peak resistance, which then rapidly falls away before the end of stroke. Not conducive to good stroke technique.
Force Curve As stroke profile is more robust, more work can be comfortably achieved per stroke. Alternatively, resistance can be reduced or increased at a turn of the resistance dial. Limited ability to increase power by “pulling harder and faster” but effectively restricted as water free-flows in tank reducing actual workout intensity from perceived effort. Inconsistent stroke pull can create a high perception of ‘work’, but less effective stroke power output.
Performance Monitor Computer can be set to allow for different water levels and resulting resistance changes to calculate new outputs. Computer does not adjust to different water level so workout becomes unmeasurable other than at one set water level. Extensive computer, but display seems to ignore registering considerable resistance lag at beginning of every stroke pull.

If you’re interested in FDF’s Fluid Resistance based rowers that are designed to outperform their market competitors, then view our extensive range of FluidRowers online or find your nearest distributor.

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