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Ergatta Rower Review: The Ultimate Gaming Workout Experience


Ergatta rowing machine

Today, I’m diving into a comprehensive review of the Ergatta Rower. With years of experience in fitness tech and countless hours spent rowing, I’m here to provide you with an authentic perspective on what makes the Ergatta unique in the world of rowing machines.

The Ergatta Rowing Machine isn’t just another rower. Its fun workouts, powered by a sleek, water-resistance mechanism, and wrapped in an elegant cherrywood design, offer a fitness experience that’s both engaging and aesthetic. For those on a budget, the Ergatta Lite offers a more affordable option without skimping on the core features that make this rower special.

In this review, I’ll highlight its unique selling points and discuss whether it lives up to the hype. By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of whether the Ergatta is the right fit for your fitness journey.

Main Takeaways

Ergatta Rower
Ergatta Rower


  • Offers a unique experience with competitive racing and gaming elements
  • Features a handcrafted cherry wood design, adding a touch of elegance to home decor.
  • Regular updates enhance the machine with the latest features and improvements.
  • Wide variety of races and programs tailored to different fitness levels and goals.
  • "Rivals" list and live races add a community and competitive element.
  • "Get Started" series for newcomers to rowing.
  • Enhanced user interface for easy workout history and progress monitoring.
  • Syncs with devices like Apple Health for broader fitness tracking.
Here at Start Rowing we include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission.

  • Beautifully designed
  • Workouts personalized to your fitness level
  • Data-driven workouts, interactive training programs, games, monthly challenges
  • Super lightweight and stands upright for easy storage
  • In partnership with WaterRower
  • Connectivity supports Bluetooth headphones and heart rate monitors
  • Expensive
  • No workouts led by instructors
  • No workouts for off the rower 

If you’re in the market for a rowing machine that combines cutting-edge technology with a classic design, the Ergatta is a top contender.

Price Point: The Ergatta rower is priced around $2,299 for the original model and $1,599 for the Ergatta Lite.

Bottom Line: The Ergatta offers a premium rowing experience that blends functionality and aesthetics, perfect for those who want an engaging and visually appealing fitness solution.

Build Quality and Design

Let’s dive right into the heart of what makes the Ergatta Rower stand out: its frame and construction.

Ergatta rower at home

Frame and Construction

The Ergatta’s sustainably sourced cherrywood frame is a testament to its high-quality craftsmanship, providing both durability and an elegant aesthetic that enhances any room. Despite its sophisticated appearance, the cherrywood is incredibly robust, offering long-lasting performance and easy mobility.

Cherrywood is known for its toughness and resistance to wear and tear, factors which contribute to the overall longevity of the machine. During my testing period, even after several intense sessions, the frame held up beautifully with no signs of strain or damage. It’s lightweight too, tipping the scales at 106 lbs when filled with water and just 76 lbs without. This makes it surprisingly easy to move around if needed, especially considering its solid construction.

When you compare the Ergatta to other rowing machines like the Concept2 or the Hydrow, the difference in build quality is immediately noticeable. While the Concept2 uses more metal in its construction, which can feel cold and industrial, the Ergatta offers a warm, inviting aesthetic that blends seamlessly into home decor. But don’t let the wood fool you into thinking it’s less durable. The Ergatta can support up to 500 lbs and accommodate users up to 6 ft 8 in tall, which is quite impressive and surpasses many competitors in the market.

However, there’s a bit of maintenance involved. To keep that cherrywood looking pristine, you’ll need to wipe down the frame after every use. It’s a small trade-off for such a stunning piece of equipment, but definitely something to keep in mind if you’re considering this rower.

One more thing to note is the difference between the original Ergatta and the Ergatta Lite. The Lite version is designed to be even more portable. It’s slightly lighter and has some design tweaks to make it easier to store. But fundamentally, both versions share the same high-quality construction and aesthetic appeal.

Console and Display

Ergatta rower display console

Moving on to the console, which in my opinion, is where the Ergatta truly shines. The 17.3” HD touchscreen is nothing short of spectacular. It’s large, crisp, and incredibly responsive. During my workouts, I really liked the diplay. The visuals are sharp, and the interface is intuitive, making it easy to navigate through different workout programs and track your progress in real-time.

The Ergatta’s display comes equipped with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities, ensuring you stay connected and can easily sync your workouts with other fitness apps or devices. This is particularly advantageous for those who like to keep a comprehensive track of their fitness journey across platforms.

When you compare the Ergatta’s screen to other models like the Hydrow or NordicTrack, there’s a noticeable difference. The Hydrow also boasts a high-quality screen, but at 22 inches, it’s quite a bit larger, which might be more appealing if you prefer a more immersive experience. However, I found the 17.3 inches on the Ergatta to be more than sufficient for my needs. It strikes a balance between size and functionality without overwhelming the user.

One nifty feature is the screen’s ability to flip around for compact storage. This is especially useful if you’re tight on space and need to tuck the rower away when not in use. The Ergatta Lite, in particular, has a more streamlined design, making it even easier to store. It also features a different mechanism for the power cord, which is more integrated and less obtrusive compared to the original model.

Performance and Resistance Mechanism

Ergatta rower in use 2

Water Resistance System: Mimicking the Real Rowing Experience

One of the standout features of the Ergatta is its unique water resistance system. If you’ve ever rowed on an actual body of water, you’ll appreciate how closely this system replicates that experience.

The Ergatta uses a tank filled with water, which creates a natural and dynamic resistance. The more vigorously you row, the harder the resistance becomes, mimicking the feel of paddling through water. This not only makes your workout more challenging but also more authentic.

The maintenance of the water resistance system is fairly straightforward. You simply need to add chlorine tablets every six months to keep it clean. This minimal maintenance is a small price to pay for the incredibly smooth and realistic rowing experience it provides. Plus, the water-sloshing sound adds an enjoyable and somewhat soothing auditory element to your workout, which is notably quieter than the noise generated by air rowers.

Belt Drive System: Smooth and Silent

The Ergatta also features a belt drive system that ensures a smooth pull with every stroke. This is a big plus because it reduces the wear and tear on the machine and provides a consistent, almost frictionless rowing motion. The belt drive is a marked improvement over chain-driven systems, which can sometimes feel jerky and noisy. This combination of water resistance and a belt drive system makes each rowing session feel fluid and efficient.

Adjustable Resistance: Customizing Your Workout

One of the unique aspects of the Ergatta’s water resistance system is that you can adjust the resistance by changing the amount of water in the tank. This is a simple yet effective way to tailor your workouts to your fitness level. Whether you’re a beginner just getting started or an experienced rower looking for a challenge, you can modify the water level to meet your needs.

Calibration and Customization

Initial Calibration Process: Setting Your Baseline

When you first set up your Ergatta, you’ll go through an initial calibration process to set your performance levels. This involves a 2,000-meter row, which might sound daunting but is a great way to establish your baseline fitness level. The Ergatta uses this data to personalize your workouts, ensuring they are appropriately challenging and engaging.

Personalized Profiles: Tailoring Workouts for Multiple Users

One of the fantastic features of the Ergatta is its ability to support multiple user profiles. This means each member of your household can have their own customized workout plan based on their initial calibration. The machine remembers each user’s settings, so you don’t have to recalibrate every time someone new hops on. This makes it an excellent choice for families or shared living spaces.

Workout Variety and Programming

Diverse Workout Modes: Keeping You Engaged

The Ergatta offers a variety of workout modes designed to keep you engaged and motivated. Let’s break them down:

  • Push Programs: These are structured training plans that guide you through progressive intensity levels. They’re perfect for those who thrive on systematic improvement.
  • Interval Workouts: High-intensity interval training (HIIT) sessions that are great for burning calories and improving cardiovascular fitness.
  • Race Workouts: Feeling competitive? These workouts let you race against other rowers or your own previous best times.
  • Open Row: Sometimes, you just want to row at your own pace without any structured plan, and the Open Row mode allows for exactly that.

Each workout type is meticulously designed to adapt to your individual fitness levels and goals. The AI coaching feature is particularly noteworthy. It analyzes your rowing form and provides real-time feedback for improvement, making your sessions not just effective but also educational.

Progressive Training Blocks: Structured and Effective

The push programs and progressive training blocks are well-designed to ensure a gradual yet effective improvement in your fitness levels. Whether you’re looking to build endurance, strength, or speed, these programs offer a clear path forward. The integration of AI coaching further personalizes these workouts, making sure you’re always rowing with the correct form and maximizing your efficiency.

User Experience with the Ergatta Rower

Initial Setup and Assembly

Setting up the Ergatta was a surprisingly smooth experience. When the large box arrived at my doorstep, I braced myself for a potentially daunting assembly process. However, the instructions were clear and straightforward, making the setup a breeze. The professional assembly service included with the purchase was a godsend. The technician arrived promptly, handled all the heavy lifting, and had the machine up and running in no time.

Day-to-Day Use

Rowing Feel and Resistance

Using the Ergatta daily has been great for my fitness routine. The water resistance system provides a smooth, consistent resistance that mimics the sensation of rowing on an actual body of water. The gentle whoosh of the water adds an element of realism and makes each session feel immersive. While the resistance isn’t adjustable on the fly, this encourages a focus on form and rhythm, making each session more purposeful.

Ease of Use

In terms of ease of use, the Ergatta shines brightly. The machine’s interface is intuitive and user-friendly, even for those who might not be tech-savvy. The integration of game elements into workouts is seamless and engaging. I found myself genuinely looking forward to each session, eager to see how I would fare in the next challenge or race. The milestones and achievements, such as hitting the 100,000-meter mark, add a sense of accomplishment and motivation to keep pushing forward.

Community and Social Features

Community Engagement

Ergatta has done a commendable job fostering a sense of community among its users. The leaderboards and challenges create a healthy competitive environment that keeps you coming back for more. While real-time competition isn’t available, the asynchronous racing features allow you to compete against other rowers’ times, which is just as thrilling.

Community events and challenges are frequent and varied, ensuring there’s something for everyone. From monthly distance challenges to special holiday events, there’s always a new goal to strive for. The active and supportive community is an added bonus. Platforms like Reddit and Facebook are bustling with fellow Ergatta users sharing tips, celebrating milestones, and offering support. It’s a testament to the brand’s commitment to creating a connected and engaged user base.

Comfort and Ergonomics

When you first settle into the Ergatta, you’ll notice the meticulous attention to comfort and ergonomics. Let’s break it down, starting with the seat and handle design.

Seat and Handle Design

The seat on the Ergatta is pretty good for extended rowing sessions. It’s ergonomically designed with a slight contour that supports your sit bones, ensuring you remain comfortable even during those marathon workouts. Unlike other rowers where you might start squirming after 20 minutes, the Ergatta’s seat keeps you in a stable, comfortable position for the duration of your session. Plus, the cushioning is just right—not too soft to cause instability, and not too hard to be uncomfortable.

The handles also deserve a mention. They have a textured grip that feels secure without being abrasive on your hands. This is especially important if you’re rowing for extended periods, as it reduces the chances of blisters and calluses forming. The design ensures that your wrists stay in a natural position, which minimizes strain and potential injuries. And if you prefer a higher seat position, the rise bundle is available to elevate the seat. This option is particularly beneficial for users with joint issues or those who find it challenging to sit low to the ground.

Smooth Glide and Dual Rails

One of the standout features is the seat’s smooth glide across dual rails. Covered with a durable plastic layer, these rails ensure a frictionless, quiet rowing experience. This smooth motion is crucial for maintaining a consistent rhythm and reducing wear on the machine over time. It’s akin to rowing on water, which isn’t something you can say about many indoor rowers.

Footrests and Footboards

The footboards on the Ergatta are spacious, accommodating a variety of foot sizes comfortably. They come with heel straps that secure your feet in place, preventing any awkward slipping or sliding during your row. This secure foot placement enhances your overall stability and rowing efficiency.

Moreover, the footrests are adjustable, which is a godsend for users of different heights. Whether you’re 5’2” or 6’5”, you can adjust the footrests to fit your leg length perfectly. This adjustability not only enhances comfort but also improves your rowing performance by allowing for a more effective and efficient stroke. A unique feature worth noting is the placement of seat stoppers. These are particularly beneficial for shorter users, as they prevent the seat from sliding too far back, ensuring a full and comfortable range of motion.

Footrest Adjustability

The adjustability of the footrests is more than just a convenience; it’s a significant factor in overall comfort and performance. Proper foot placement can make a world of difference in your rowing experience. If the footrests are too high or too low, it can throw off your entire stroke, leading to inefficiency and potential discomfort. The close placement of the footrests is also beneficial for users with less mobile hips and ankles, making it easier to maintain a natural and effective rowing position.

Storage and Space Requirements

Space Considerations

The Ergatta Rower is designed with convenience in mind, especially when it comes to storage. When in use, its dimensions are fairly standard for a rowing machine, but it truly shines when stored vertically. Standing just over 7 feet tall, it takes up minimal floor space, making it ideal for those with limited room. You don’t have to empty the water tank to store it vertically, saving time and effort. The machine’s lightweight design means you can easily move it around without needing a second pair of hands.

Home Gym Compatibility

The Ergatta isn’t just a functional piece of fitness equipment; it’s also aesthetically pleasing. Its sleek, modern design complements a wide range of home decors, making it a stylish addition to any room. Whether you have a dedicated home gym or need to fit it into your living space, the Ergatta blends in seamlessly. When comparing the original Ergatta to the Ergatta Lite model, the latter is slightly more compact, making it an even better option for tight spaces. Both models offer the same ease of storage and mobility, ensuring that you can find a spot for them in almost any home setup.

Price and Value

Cost Analysis

Breaking down the cost of the Ergatta involves more than just the initial purchase price. The base price is certainly an investment: expect to pay around $2,299 for the original model and $1,599 for the Ergatta Lite. Additional fees such as shipping (approximately $199) and professional assembly ($249) can also add up. If you’re handy with tools, you could save a bit by assembling it yourself.

The subscription fee for accessing Ergatta’s engaging workout content is $29 per month after the initial 30-day free trial. This grants you access to a wide range of interactive workouts, which are a big part of what makes Ergatta special. Though the subscription fee adds to the long-term cost, it enhances the overall workout experience.

Value Comparison

How does Ergatta stack up against its competitors like Hydrow and NordicTrack? Hydrow is priced similarly at around $2,295, with a monthly subscription fee of $38 for live and on-demand classes. While Hydrow might offer a more immersive live class experience, Ergatta’s gaming-inspired workouts and slightly lower subscription fee might appeal to those who find traditional workouts a bit mundane.

NordicTrack’s RW900 rower is priced at about $1,699 with a $39 monthly iFit subscription that includes an expansive library of workouts across various types of equipment. This might appeal to those looking for a broader fitness regime beyond just rowing. Ergatta’s unique training experience can make rowing feel less like a chore and more like an adventure, justifying its price for those who value an engaging and motivational workout environment.

Customer Support and Warranty

Support Options

Good customer support can make or break your experience with any fitness equipment. Fortunately, Ergatta excels in this area. Users can reach Ergatta’s support team via phone, email, or live chat. My experience with their support team has been positive; they were prompt and knowledgeable, addressing my queries efficiently. Ergatta also has a lively online community that’s quick to help with tips and tricks, which is incredibly reassuring when troubleshooting minor issues or looking for workout advice.

Warranty Coverage

Ergatta offers solid warranty protection: the frame comes with a 5-year warranty, while parts and labor are covered for one year. Comparatively, Hydrow provides a similar warranty with a 5-year frame warranty and 1-year warranty on components and labor. NordicTrack offers a 10-year frame warranty, 2-year parts warranty, and 1-year labor warranty for the RW900 model, which might be more appealing if warranty length is a deciding factor for you. Nonetheless, Ergatta’s warranty terms are competitive and provide peace of mind knowing that if something goes wrong, you’re covered.

Start Rowing’s Verdict

The Ergatta rowing machine offers an unparalleled blend of functionality, aesthetics, and innovative workout experiences. Its unique gaming approach makes rowing both fun and motivating, while the beautiful frame adds a touch of sophistication to any home gym.

Who Should Consider the Ergatta?

  • Fitness Enthusiasts Seeking Engagement: If you find traditional workouts monotonous and crave an engaging, interactive experience, the Ergatta’s workouts are designed to keep you motivated.
  • Families and Shared Spaces: With multiple user profiles, it’s ideal for households where several people will use the machine, ensuring personalized workouts for everyone.
  • Design-Conscious Buyers: Those who appreciate well-crafted, aesthetically pleasing fitness equipment will love the Ergatta’s cherrywood frame that seamlessly fits into home decor.

Who Might Want to Look Elsewhere?

  • Budget-Conscious Shoppers: With a higher initial cost and ongoing subscription fees, it might not be the best fit for those looking for a more budget-friendly option.
  • Those who want instructor-led workouts: Though the Ergatta offers fun and engaging workouts, it does not offer instructor-led workouts or live workouts like those on the Hydrow or Peloton memberships.

Ergatta Rower

Amongst a new wave of interactive exercise machines, it can be difficult to stand out. Yet Ergatta has managed to create an all-new rowing fitness experience like no other. Ergatta takes your typical gaming experience and turned it into an interactive gaming competition. But does it deliver? Let’s find out. Game on!

Product Brand: Ergatta

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: 2299.00

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:

Ergatta Rower FAQs

Do you ever have to change the water out?

No, it is sealed in the reservoir and will not evaporate/leak. Additionally, Ergatta provides purification tablets that can be added to the water to keep it clean and clear.

Is Ergatta made by WaterRower?

The actual rowing machine is built by WaterRower, yes. Ergatta is a separate company that has partnered with WaterRower to have its display console built on a WaterRower rowing machine. 

Where does the name Ergatta come from?

The name Ergatta comes from a combination of two words within the rowing world. Ergometer, which is a rowing machine, and regatta, which is a series of boat races. I think this is quite clever. 

Sam Watson


Sam is a CPT, Functional Movement Specialist, and content writer. As an ex-collegiate rower, Sam is an expert in the field of rowing and is passionate about helping people move more freely. With a dedication to excellence, Sam is a respected authority in the fitness and wellness community. When she's not working, she enjoys practicing yoga, hiking, and spending time with her two beloved dogs. Sam's expertise and personalized coaching make her an invaluable asset to the Start Rowing community.