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Stamina InMotion Rower Review

Stamina InMotion Rower ReviewWant to know why the Stamina InMotion Rower is one of the best rowing machines under $100?

Continue reading the full review to find out why!

While most hydraulic-piston rowers have 2 pistons, this single-piston rower provides a smooth, strong, quiet rowing stroke that is great for beginners.

Equipped with the “InTouch Fitness Monitor”, you can track all your workout data to help you stay motivated, lose weight, and stay healthy!

Priced at such a great value, most buyers loved this rowing machine but there are a few items you should know about before purchasing.

This InMotion Rower review outlines all the pros and cons below :)

Table of Contents
(click a title to jump ahead!)

1. Resistance Type
2. Monitor/Control Panel
3. Build Quality
4. Comfort
5. Storage
6. Capacity
7. Dimensions
8. Assembly
9. Pros and Cons
10. Consumer Reviews
11. Warranty
12. Price

Resistance Type

The Stamina InMotion Rower is a hydraulic-piston resistance rowing machine.

Unlike most hydraulic-piston rowers that have 2 pistons, the InMotion Rower only has 1 center piston.

The main reasons for only having 1 piston is to make the rower lighter, cost less, and have a single-centered rowing arm.

The single piston also helps to create an even, smooth row that is sometimes a complaint of the dual-piston rowers.

On a dual-piston rower there are two arms, each controlled by separate hydraulic-pistons. It can sometimes be difficult to get each arm at the exact same resistance and sometimes one piston may wear out faster than the other.

With a single piston rower, like the Stamina InMotion Rower, you do not have to worry about this happening.

To learn more about hydraulic piston rowers and other resistance types, check out my article here.

If you want to see what a dual-piston rower looks like check out the Stamina 1215 Orbital Review.

Resistance Benefits

The Stamina InMotion Rower has 5 different resistance levels that can be controlled by setting the piston higher-up or lower-down on the rowing arm. The higher-up you set the piston, the harder it will become to perform a complete row.

Stamina Inmotion Rower Resistance

You can see in the photo above how you can easily adjust the resistance by removing a pin, changing the level, and then reinserting the pin (newer models have a knob).

When reviewing the strength of the resistance levels, it seemed to be perfect for beginner men, most women, and elderly people. All users in these categories felt the resistance gave them a hard enough workout and room to grow into the harder levels.

Some advanced women and strong men felt the rowing machine did not have enough to offer as far as difficulty, but for the price of this model you cannot expect it to give the resistance of a higher priced rower like the Concept2 Model D.

Another added benefit of the InMotion Rower is it has a slightly inclined center-beam that the seat slides on. This means that when pushing off, you will have to work against gravity to push yourself up the incline and thus getting a better leg workout.

Resistance Negatives

Like all hydraulic-piston rowing machines, there are a few things you should know about before purchasing.

Hydraulic-pistons will heat up after working out for about 15 minutes due to the oil inside. You must wait for them to cool down before touching, but there are warning labels on the machine to remind you of this.

The pistons can also leak (a majority of the cases they don’t), so it is recommended to put a towel down or purchase a Stamina Fold-to-Fit Rowing Machine Mat.

Another downside of a hydraulic-piston rowing machine is that you must stop rowing and get off the machine to change the resistance levels. Some people can change levels while on the rower but it is much more difficult and you could burn yourself!

This can be a slight inconvenience but as you use the rowing machine more, you will get a better understanding for what resistance level you want to set it at before you begin your workout.

Resistance Overall

Overall, users thought the Stamina InMotion Rower resistance was great for beginners and that it was a very quiet, strong, and smooth.

If you are just looking to add about 15-20 minutes of moderate-light rowing each day or warm-up before other exercises, then the InMotion Rower is a great fit you you!

However, if you are looking for a vigorous workout, you may need to look into other models in a slightly higher price range. I make some great recommendations in my final section of this article.

Monitor/Control Panel

The Stamina InMotion Rowing Machine comes complete with an “InTouch Fitness Monitor”. This monitor gives you all the tracking information to help you achieve your fitness goals.

The single button multi-function monitor tracks the following data:

  • Count (total number of strokes made)
  • Scan (changes between time, calorie, and strokes/min every 6 seconds)
  • Time (displays workout time)
  • Strokes/Min
  • Calorie (records estimated calories burned per avg. user. This should not be used as an accurate calorie count but to compare between different workouts)

As you can see from the photo below, the InMotion Monitor is super easy to use.

Stamina InMotion Rowing Machine Monitor

To turn the monitor on, just start rowing or press any button. The monitor will turn off after 4 minutes of inactivity.

Due to the monitor being attached to the rowing arm, you will have to pause while in the “catch” position to read the data. The “catch” position is the starting position where your knees are bent and arms extended.

Some users mentioned this “catch position” pause made it harder to read the data, but in my opinion it can help some users. Having the monitor on the rowing arm means it will be very close to users and easy to read, unlike other rowers where the monitor is built into the flywheel.

Having a monitor on such an inexpensive model should also be seen as a bonus, considering some rowers in this price range have no monitor at all!

Many users also have various fitness watches to help them record data more accurately and mentioned the basic monitor isn’t an issue due to them having more advanced technology in their phone or watch.

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Build Quality

The Stamina InMotion Rower is built with a solid steel structure and is very lightweight. No users mentioned the machine feeling cheap or unstable.

The handle grips, foot-straps, seat, bearings, rollers, etc. all felt like they were made of quality material and wouldn’t fall apart after a few times of rowing.

A lightweight steel frame allows for smaller and elderly people to move the machine around easily, which is a great benefit for people living alone.

However, due to it being a lightweight, compact rower it is not built to take a beating like high-end or commercial rowing machines. If you try to perform certain “HIIT” type exercises, the rower could move around as is not built for this type of rigorous workout.

Check out the video below to see the Stamina InMotion Rower in action!

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Everyone wants to be comfortable when exercising and comfort is a main concern of many users when buying a rowing machine.

The Stamina InMotion Rower comes with a cozy stitched seat, foam hand grips, and pivoting foot plates with adjustable velcro straps. These features help to make your experience as comfortable as possible!

This rower is also very quiet with no vibrations, so you can watch TV while exercising and you won’t disturb anyone else in the house or below you in an apartment.

The anti-slip floor protectors also protect any hard surfaced floors, prevent your rower from sliding, and act as shock absorbers.

Stamina Inmotion Rowing Machine Review

Some users commented about the seat being a little wobbly but other users said they did not experience this and to make sure all the bolts were tightly secured.

Another recommendation would be to start off wearing workout-gloves because it did take some time to get used to the handle. If you do not currently perform any physical activities with your hands, it is common for new rowers to feel like they may form a blister. If you do work with your hands on occasion, you shouldn’t have a problem.

As you will read below, the rower sits low to the ground which makes it more difficult for rowers with bad knees to continuously bend down to get on and off the rower. One owner said they put the rower on a platform to make it higher off the ground, but just beware that this could be more dangerous and cause the rower to be unstable.

Overall, users felt the InMotion Rower was comfortable to use and had no serious complaints about any of the comfort features.

Check Lowest Pricing

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The InMotion Rower already has a small, compact footprint when in use but it does have the ability to stand upright and store if needed.

It is too tall to store under a bed and to do so you would have to remove the back-support and rowing arm. However, it is perfect for standing upright in a corner or closet.

Stamina InMotion Rower Storage

When standing the rower to store, I would suggest having a space that is a 2.0′ x 2.0′ square and 5.0′ high.

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The manufacturer lists the weight capacity of the InMotion Rowing Machine at 250 lbs.

However, there were users over this limit who used the machine with no problem. One user reported they were 265 lbs and felt the machine was sturdy and safe.

In my opinion, I would stick to the manufacturer’s suggestion and purchase a rowing machine with a heavier capacity if need be.

Stamina InMotion Rowing Machine Capacity

Users as tall as 6’3″ reported using this model. However, I would recommend anyone over 6.0′ to test the rowing machine out before buying.

A user who was 4’9″ also reported using the InMotion Rower, just to give you an idea how short a user can be.

One issue for taller users is the fixed rowing arm could pull back fairly low on the torso when they fully extend their legs. Taller rowers should look into models with the “handle & strap” pull mechanism rather than a fixed rowing arm.

So basically, anyone shorter than 6’3″ and under 265 lbs. will be fine to use this rower.

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  • Product Dimensions (L x W x H):
    • 56.5″ x 23.5″ x 19.0″
  • Storarge Dimensions (L x W x H):
    • 23.5″ x 19.0″ x 56.5″
  • Product Weight:
    • 28.9 lbs
  • Shipping Weight:
    • 29.9 lbs
  • Center Beam Heights (Bar the seat is on):
    • 8.5″ at it’s lowest point near the front of the rower
    • 11.5″ at it’s highest point when your legs are fully extended

The center-beam height gives you an idea of how low the rower is to the ground and how far you will have to bend to get on this model. It also gives you an idea of the incline that the seat sits on and how much you will have to push yourself up while rowing.

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Luckily, the assembly of the Stamina InMotion Rower is very easy and can be completed in about 30 minutes.

The manual has very easy to read instructions with pictures and most owners who are not mechanically inclined said they put it together with no problem.

The rower comes with two 6mm allen wrenches and one 13mm wrench, which are all you need to put the rower together. You will, however, need 1AA battery for the monitor, so make sure you have this before your InMotion Rower arrives!

Once you receive your rower, lay out all the parts and do not throw away the box incase it needs to be returned for some reason.

A lot of users thought they were missing parts, but don’t panic, a lot of parts are preassembled into the rower and they will already be in-place when you follow the instructions.

Stamina InMotion Rower Assembly

Another problem I saw with assembly was the mounting of the piston from the “front stabilizer” to the “rowing arm”. When owners put the piston in backwards it would bend the bracket when they started to row. The part of the piston that is “silver and the rod comes out” must be attached to the rowing arm (see picture above).

Other than that, the assembly seemed to go great for everyone!

If you do come across any problems please contact Stamina’s customer support. I have dealt with them many times and they are great!

Don’t forget to mention the full model number: Stamina 35-0123A.

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Pros and Cons


  • Great beginner rower
  • Smooth and quiet
  • Included fitness monitor on inexpensive rower
  • Easy to assemble
  • Low price
  • Great build quality


  • Resistance can lack for advanced users
  • May be small for very tall users
  • Low to ground for people with really bad knees

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Consumer Reviews

Overall, consumers were very happy with the Stamina InMotion Rower and felt is was a good quality rower for the price. Users who understood that this model was a beginner rowing machine and would not perform like the $1,000 rowers, loved the machine and gave it very favorable reviews.

It also seemed to work best for people who were just trying to get a little more exercise during the day and worked especially well for women and elderly people.

Click to see more Stamina InMotion Rower reviews here.

Average Rating: 4.0

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  • Parts: 90-Days
  • Frame: 1-Year

The warranty may seem short compared to other rowing machines but having reviewed a lot of Stamina rowers I can assure you all their warranties are the same.

I believe Stamina stands behind their products and know they build high quality machines. Stamina also always does a great job of taking care of their customers when they have a problem.

Of course, we would all like to see a longer warranty but I think Stamina sets the time limit to only ensure there are no malfunctioning parts.

Make sure to register your product by sending in the Product Registration Card or registering your unit online after buying.

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Stamina InMotion Rower Price

Price is always an important feature when looking to invest in a piece of fitness equipment. Users looking to get into rowing for the first time or just move a little more throughout the day cannot beat this price!

When looking at various online retailers, they all pretty much list the model for the same price, but it seems like Stamina pushes most of their rowers through Amazon.

I also like Amazon for buying rowing machines because they have a very large selection, offer free shipping on qualified orders, have great customer service, and act as a layer of protection between the consumer and manufacturer.

Check lowest pricing

Final Review

The Stamina InMotion Rower is obviously a great choice if you are looking for a low cost option, but is it the best?

There are definitely a few other option that I like to recommend which are very similar. You can read my article on the best rower under $100 to see a few other great models.

If you think you may want an air or magnetic rower, then check out some great options under $300.

I hope you enjoyed my Stamina InMotion Rower Review! If I missed anything or if you have any questions please leave me a message in the comments section below.

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  1. I purchased my rower used… it appears to be like new and the seller said they barely used it. I feel like the lowest resistance is still very stiff & hard to pull… I’m a strong female so I’m wondering if something is wrong or if it’s normal?? Ive never used a rower before so I have nothing to compare it to. Any input is appreciated, Thank you

    1. Hi Lisa,

      I would try a few different settings and try to move the piston from the highest setting back to the lowest setting (and vice versa). There’s a chance the small opening in the piston is stuck on the hardest resistance. Also, the fluid inside the piston becomes easier as it warms up. So either try warming it up by using it for 10min or make sure you aren’t starting to use it in a cold room, like a basement.

      I hope that helps!

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