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on April 28, 2013
I have to admit that I was somewhat let-down by this rower. I spent a lot of time looking and comparing reviews, because I knew that I couldn't spend the big money for a Concept 2, so I wanted to find the best I could within my price range. I finally settled on the LifeSpan.

Pros:
Putting this thing together is a piece of cake. It literally took me 15-30 minutes. The main piece, the big gray box that houses all the pulleys and such, is already assembled for you. All I had to do was attach the seat, bars, etc. (The instructions were a little confusing when it came to the seat; I actually thought they hadn't sent the bolts for it and was very upset. Turns out the instructions were just a little poorly done for that particular piece, so if you get the same thing, don't worry!)

There are several different tension settings, so you can choose what works best for you.

And possibly my favorite thing - the seat and long bar fold up easily so storing it, or just reducing it's footprint, is really easy.

Cons:
The computer part is supposed to show you strokes/min, a timer, estimated calories, etc. You put in the included battery and pop the unit into place. Mine has never worked. Oh, when I start rowing, numbers show up. But only on the timer - everything else stays blank - and the timer seems to work randomly. It will say 2:17 for a very long time, then decide to work for about four seconds, then stop again, etc. I have to use a watch in order to actually time my workout. Obviously it doesn't affect the workout, but it is disappointing.

If I get into a good rhythm and start pulling with any force (and it's just a fabric strap you're pulling) I find that the front actually lifts off the ground. I only weigh 135lbs, so I definitely didn't expect to pull the unit right off the ground! I actually had to find some heavy weights and put them on the front feet in order to keep that from happening.

After about 7 or 8 workouts, I started to notice a bit of noise when I was using it. After I pull, and I start to move forward, there's something like a squeak or a squeal. I assume it's from the pulleys inside the machine, and it's very distracting. I don't expect a silent machine, especially in this price range, but I like to try to watch tv while I'm rowing and the constant squeal/squeak gets extremely frustrating.

All in all, you get what you pay for. You're going to get a decent workout, it gets heart rate up, and it's much better for cardio than an elliptical or treadmill. (In my opinion.) But you're not going to get quite the same quality of experience you would if you shelled out the extra money for a higher end model like the Concept 2.
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on August 22, 2015
I like this a lot. It gives a good work out. I have two minor complaints that aren't really complaints but to help others shopping for one. 1) This is very loud. Much louder than the concept 2 I use at the gym, but if you turn the tv way up you can hear it. 2) I don't think the display works very well. A 30 minute workout should burn about 350 calories, but mine shows like 90. The manual does say to only use it a comparison to other workout so I guess they know it isn't reliable.

But for the price this is a good purchase and was easy to assemble.
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on July 27, 2015
great product. Having watched videos on rowing machines I am able to use this as intended. I get an excellent workout. I don't understand the negative comments unless people are not using it correctly. As a number of people reported, my monitoring device failed almost immediately. For my purposes, I really don't need it, so haven't replaced it.
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on January 12, 2011
This rower arrived in two boxes in good condition. Assembly is very easy - just a few nuts and bolts, with the included hex keys and wrench. Mine was missing a washer, a plastic bump-guard, and a nut, but all non-essential, and I was able to go ahead and use the rower immediately. When I contacted Lifespan, they immediately sent out the missing parts, and I received them very quickly. The sliding action is very smooth, and the pulling action is also. It is relatively quiet for an exercise machine (obviously there will be some noise), and I am able to easily watch television while working out. I have not attempted to check the accuracy of the included battery-powered information panel, but I do like that it pauses the timer if the seat doesn't move for a few seconds. It folds and transports easily on rollers.

Update: having used this for the last 8 months, I have to say that it has been great. It is easily quiet enough to row while watching television at a reasonable volume, and the action has mostly been smooth. There is a slight squeak sometimes depending on how I am sitting - slightly annoying or you can think of it as a reminder when you aren't sitting quite right and have bad form, haha. On my slick tile floor, the whole machine does slide a bit if you use a jerky motion, but if you have a smooth and steady stroke, then it's fine. Haven't gotten tired of it yet, and use it almost daily as part of a regimen that keeps my middle-aged paunch at bay (somewhat:-).
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on August 18, 2017
Despite tightening the velcro foot straps to the point wherfe my circulation is almost cut off, my feet still slip off the foot pads after only a few strokes. Shoes, bare feet, only socks -- makes no difference. Heel stops need to be at least an inch higher. Wish I could return it.
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on August 8, 2015
Super easy to put together. Folds up and easy to put away. While rowing however, the mechanical part jumps up. It should be weighted.
I end up sitting on while my husband uses it and vice-versa
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on January 24, 2012
The LifeSpan RW1000 is an excellent home fitness machine. I couldn't be happier with it or recommend it more highly.

It was easy to assemble and is easy to use and the ability to store the seat slide in an upright position is critical in my house. It has enough monitor features to be informative and keep me motivated while exercising. The seat slide is very fluid with absolutely no resistance, the row strap move seamlessly and the machine is darn near silent when in use. I place my tablet next it for a little music to work out by and have no problem hearing it.

I've enjoyed the low-impact exercise this row machine offers.

I like the quality of the machine and it is a great product for the cost.
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on December 10, 2016
I am right at 6'5" tall (265lbs) and it is probably the max I would say for it but I still get a comfortable workout. I'm very happy with the machine resistance as well as the seat and pedals, giving it four stars for the screen I would have liked a little better quality but you can't beat this for the price and overall quality of the product/workout.
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on February 5, 2015
The foot pedals are designed very poorly - feet come out and it's so frustrating. I requested a second pair of Velcro straps which they sent immediately, however it didn't entirely solve the problem. I keep trying to wear different type of shoes and last resort will be putting Velcro on shoes and bottom of pedals - which was suggested by a friend.
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on May 2, 2015
Love this machine! I put it together all by myself (my first workout involving it!) and have been enjoying its smooth action faithfully.
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