The Stamina X Air Rower aims at delivering a quality rower that can keep the most fitness-minded people happy, for a mid-level price. If you have the Concept2 Model E on your wishlist but don’t have enough cash for it, you’ll find that the Stamina X Air Rower might be a cheaper alternative that’s worth exploring.
Overall Rower Rating: 3/5
- Can provide a good workout
- Easy to assemble
- Can be folded to save space
- Sturdy steel construction
- Short warranty
- The fan is louder than most air resistance rowers
- Users report chain can come loose when rowing
- Some consider the seat to be uncomfortable
- Max user weight of only 250lbs
- Wind resistance wheel
- Multi-function monitor tracks: distance, calories burned, speed, time, number of strokes and strokes per minute
- Large pivoting footplates
- Foldable frame
- Max user weight 250lbs
- Durable rowing chain
At comfortably under $500, the Stamina X Air Rower is an affordable machine that doesn’t demand the high-end prices like the Concept2 Model D indoor rowers. In fact, the Stamina X Air Rower is often bought as a cheaper alternative for those who don’t want to pay the high price for the much sought after Concept2 Model E rower.
Whilst the Stamina X Air Rower is never going to live up to the lofty standards of the Concept2 Model D rower, it’s low price will attract many towards it.
Reliability & Warranty: 3.5/5
If there are any issues with the reliability of the Stamina X Air Rower, Amazon users always point the blame at the chain, specifically that the chain either comes off or loosens.
That being said, Stamina’s decision to go with a chain rather than a belt, is always going to increase the chance of something going wrong as everything becomes more ‘mechanical.’ If you do happen to buy the Stamina X Air Rower, you should be aware that there may be times where you have to constantly attend to the chain if things aren’t set up properly.
The warranty on the Stamina X Air Rower is slightly on the disappointing side in terms of length, the frame is covered for 3 years and parts is only covered for 90 days. Contrast this with the Lifespan RW1000 Indoor rowing machine (which is in the same price range) which offers a 5-year warranty on the frame, 2 years for parts as well as 1 year for labour. Based on this comparison, you can see that the warranty on the Stamina X Air Rower could be stronger.
Since the warranty is on the short side, you should approach buying this with caution particularly in the area of parts, because should something happen after only 90 days, you won’t be covered.
Stability and Quality: 4/5
The Stamina X Air Rower is well built and very sturdy and it’s a surprise to see that the max user weight is only 250lb, which is quite low considering the Concept2 Models can take up to 500lbs.
Although it’s likely a much heavier person can use the Stamina X Air Rower, I can only imagine that it was set at 250lb for warranty purposes (anyone who is over the weight limit will void the warranty) because it is a sturdy machine.
When it comes to discussing seat comfortability on any rowing machine, there’s always a handful of people who complain that the seat on their rower isn’t comfortable. The Stamina X Air Rower is no different.
In particular, a handful of users have said that the seat is too small and hard. Like all rowing machines that have uncomfortable seats, there’s always the option of buying a cushion cover to put over a seat to make it more comfortable. Therefore seat comfortability shouldn’t be too much of an issue.
Since the Stamina X Air Rower uses air resistance, there are no manual controls to select the resistance levels, but rather it is determined by how fast and hard your rowing stroke is. If you want more resistance you simply row harder, and if you want less you go slower. Whilst this will suit many, there are some people who prefer to have full control over the resistance which an air rower will not let you do.
If you are someone who is particularly fussy about having controllable resistance, then your best bet is to move away from the Stamina X Air Rower and towards a rower with a different type of resistance.
The air resistance on the Stamina X Air Rower is suitable enough for most people to get a good workout, however extremely fit people may find the Concept2 Model E indoor rower more of a challenge.
The Stamina X Air Rower is a decent size and smaller than a commercial grade machine. This is a big plus for those looking for a rower that isn’t too bulky. In addition, it has a space saving design where you can fold the fan backwards when not in use.
All air rowers will generate some noise as you pull back on your stroke, with the noise being comparable to the sound a large fan may make. Whilst the sound is never as annoying as squeaking or clicking, the fan noise on the Stamina X Air Rower is pretty loud especially if you compare it to the Concept2 Models.
If you’re planning on using the Stamina X Air Rower whilst you watch TV, it’s highly likely you’ll have to turn up the volume in order to hear the TV.
The Stamina X Air Rower comes with a monitor that displays the distance, calories burned, speed, time and strokes of your workout which are the standard metrics you’d expect. As per usual the calories burned metric is pretty useless since there is nowhere to enter your weight, height and age, however, this is a common flaw of all rower computers across the market. It would have been nice if the monitor was backlit also. All in all the monitor is as standard as one would expect.
Should I Buy the Stamina X Air Rower?
It seems that the Stamina X Air Rower is designed to attract someone who is moderately fit and wants something that will challenge them more than the casual workout rower, such as Stamina’s traditional Air Rower. You can see this is evident from the appearance of the Stamina X Air Rower as it looks a lot more ‘sporty’ than their other Stamina ATS Air Rower model. I can’t help but think that the people who do end up choosing this rower are going to be people who have considered the highly praised Concept2 Model D rower but can’t justify paying $900+ for it.
The Stamina X Air Rower provides a good workout but if you are already fit and serious about rowing, then it is worth putting your purchase on hold until you have enough money saved for the Concept2 Model D Rower. You may find that the Stamina X Rower doesn’t have enough resistance or that some other part of the machine may not be to your liking.
Not everyone has lofty fitness goals, however, and some may want an intense workout but not demand anything too extreme, in which case the Stamina X Air Rower should do the trick. But what’s more important is that the Stamina X Air Rower can deliver such a workout, without forcing you to pay too high a price like the Concept2 rowers.
At the end of the day you do get what you pay for, so to expect the experience of the Concept2 from the Stamina X Air Rower wouldn’t be fair, but it’s a good enough option as long as you don’t have unrealistic expectations.