The WaterRower A1 Home rowing machine is the only model of WaterRower, other than the Indo-Row Home, which has an exclusively home use warranty. All of the company's rowing machines are particularly stylish and attractively designed products but we want to know how they perform against rival brands of rowing machine.

To find out we've had our resident Personal Trainer Alex put the A1 through its paces and give us his views in this WaterRower A1 Home Rowing Machine Test.


The WaterRower A1 prides itself on being an ideal home machine that is easy to store in small spaces and blends in to home surroundings well. Many of the WaterRower machines, including the A1 can be stored upright on the base of the rower. This means it takes up much less space; you can actually keep three upright A1 rowers in the space that a single Spin Bike takes up!

Feel and Build

The A1 is made of solid ash wood, finished in Danish oil which gives both a smooth finish and sturdy frame. The fear some people might have is that a home machine made of real wood may have build quality somewhat like flat-pack furniture, but the reality is that the WaterRower was a very robust machine and felt stable under Alex's weight even when he was rowing at a high intensity.


The WaterFlywheel has been designed to emulate the dynamics of a boat moving across water, and creates a wave-like sound that is engaging, mesmerizing and feels like the real thing! The immediate difference you notice is that there is less impact due to the rowing motion being incredibly fluid. This means the WaterRower could be useful for people recovering for injury as the movement is non-load bearing.



The A1 features a single aluminium rail to give smooth seat movement; it also means the machine needs relatively little maintenance. In addition to this it features the A1 Quickstart home monitor. This allows the user to measure; time, distance, intensity, strokes per minute and heart rate. Unlike some of the other WaterRower monitors the A1 is built in to the base of the machine, meaning it's not likely to get knocked or damaged when moving or storing the rower away.


The WaterRower A1 Home rowing machine is not the most advanced rowing machine we have ever tested, but what it does offer is extraordinary value for money. The smooth rowing motion and gentle feel that the unique WaterFlywheel creates is consistent across the company's whole range of products and in our opinion that's what sets the A1 apart from other home rowing machines in the same price range.