For years, various press outlets have called Hydrow “the Peloton of rowing machines,” in reference to its high-quality, connected fitness machines and guided workout platform, but now that Peloton is releasing a rowing machine of their own… it’s worth asking, how do they compare? Here is an in-depth Peloton Row vs Hydrow comparison.
Disclaimer: Yes, this is an article from Hydrow. And yes, we’re going to talk about how incredible the Hydrow experience is. BUT we also recognize that Peloton also produces engaging content and has selling points of their own for their platform. So, what can you expect from this article? A face-to-face comparison between the new Peloton Row and the Hydrow rowing machine.
Brand new to the market, released for pre-orders on September 20, 2022, Peloton Row is bringing more awareness to in-home rowing. For those new to rowing, it’s important to compare apples to apples when you’re looking for a rowing machine. You’ll find a wide range of rowing machines – from a few hundred dollars at popular online retailers, to several thousands of dollars – you should compare features, materials, size, and even warranties of these machines. Peloton Row and Hydrow have similarities in that they are both top-of-the-line, at-home rowers which feature beautiful touchscreen displays for member-exclusive training content. So, bow to bow (if you will), how do they measure up?
Quick Reference Comparison
Key Peloton Benefit: All-access membership can be shared across other Peloton equipment along with an extensive library of classes for other fitness equipment.
Key Hydrow Benefit: Live Outdoor Reality; all 4,000+ rowing workouts are on the water, never in a studio. Extensive background in rowing (our CEO coached the US National Rowing Team) and world-class rowers and Olympians guiding your workouts.
Deep Dive: Peloton Row vs Hydrow Rowing Machines
We know that both Peloton and Hydrow are leaders in home fitness equipment, providing high-quality machines to people who are ready to commit to their health and fitness journey from the comfort of their homes.
So what sets them apart? How do these machines compare?
Peloton Row: $3,195 (no financing options currently available)
Hydrow: $2,495 or $52/mo with Klarna*
Hydrow Wave: $1,695 or $36/mo with Klarna* *Pending approval from Klarna
At this price point for the Peloton Row, you can purchase the original Hydrow and a 1-year Hydrow Membership for less money. You could also get a Hydrow Wave and over three years of Hydrow Membership.
When you’re investing in new home fitness equipment, you want something durable that will last you for years. It’s true that you get what you pay for. Comparing the Peloton Row vs Hydrow rowing machines, you’ll see quality materials used across the board.
Peloton Row features an anodized and powder-coated aluminum rail with a molded plastic hub. It uses a woven strap, ergonomic seat, and textured rubber handle for a secure grip, along with adjustable footbeds that feature velcro straps.
Both the Hydrow and the Hydrow Wave boast impressive quality materials. The original Hydrow has a sleek, contemporary aluminum and steel frame, bringing an elevated, elegant appearance to your workout space. The Hydrow Wave features a black polycarbonate frame with an industrial swirled finish. Both Hydrow models use a high-quality polyester webbing strap for quiet operation, along with an ergonomic low-stress grip handle.
Both Hydrow rowing machines use the same ergonomically designed cushion and adjustable foot beds. The Hydrow Wave uses a 2-roller and 2-idler system for smooth operation. The original Hydrow uses a 10-roller slide system for an extra smooth row.
Resistance mechanisms vary drastically from rowing machine to rowing machine. You’ll see water tanks, fans, electromagnetic drag, and more. Each has their own unique selling points, and each rower has their own preference.
Peloton Row uses electronically controlled resistance for a quiet, smooth row. Further details surrounding Peloton Row’s resistance mechanism have yet to be released.
Hydrow uses a True Drag™ patented electromagnetic resistance mechanism. This mechanism provides the most realistic on-the-water feel you’ll find on the market. If you’re looking for that real feeling, you won’t beat what Hydrow provides (we say that humbly – this has been verified by Athletes and users alike).
Size & Storage
Most high-quality rowing machines will be pretty comparable in size. While you’ll see some variation in the size of the rowing machine, you’ll see more variety in how rowing machines are stored than you will in the size of the machine itself.
The Peloton Row’s in-use footprint is 96”L x 24” W. It features a 23.8” screen that rotates 45 degrees in either direction and folds for storage, with a camera that captures both photo and video. It can be vertically stored with the use of the Upright Wall Anchor.
Hydrow offers two different size options. The original Hydrow has a 86″L x 25″W x 47″H footprint, while the Hydrow Wave comes in more compact at 80″L x 19″W x 43″H. Measuring 6” shorter in length, 6” narrower, and 4” shorter in height, the Hydrow Wave is the preferred Hydrow model for smaller spaces.
While stored vertically, the Hydrow has a 25″W x 33″D x 86″H footprint, taking up less than six square feet of floor space when not in use. The Hydrow Wave has an equally impressive small footprint at 26.5″W x 30″D x 82″H – a mere 1.5” wider, but 3” shallower than the original Hydrow.
Both Hydrow models require a vertical storage kit for upright storage (sold separately from the rowing machine itself).
Shipping, Delivery, Assembly + Warranty
Peloton Row is expected to ship starting in early December 2022. Delivery and setup is included in the purchase price, but delivery fees may apply to some areas in the US. According to Peloton’s FAQ page, the Row will be delivered and set up by a team of professionals including finishing assembly, connecting to power and Wi-Fi, and walking you through the basics. The installation of the Upright Wall Anchor is not included in delivery and setup.
Peloton offers a 12-month parts and labor warranty that covers the touchscreen and other original components. Peloton also offers a protection plan that provides 48 months of total coverage including accidental damage and surge protection.
Peloton’s 30 day home trial provides the opportunity for free pick up and full return if you decide you don’t like your machine. This return is at no cost to you.
The Hydrow Wave ships in 2-3 days via UPS, while the original Hydrow takes 2-3 weeks to arrive via an independent carrier. Both of Hydrow’s machines ship for free. In-home assembly is available for an extra fee, but is not required. The average user can assemble a Hydrow Wave in under 90 minutes, while the original Hydrow rower can be assembled in under 30 minutes.
Hydrow has a 30-day risk-free trial period, where you can return at no cost to you (should you decide rowing isn’t right for you). Both Hydrow machines also come with a one-year warranty, with the option to purchase additional warranties. Hydrow also offers a 30-day free trial of our app to test the experience.
Deep Dive: Peloton vs Hydrow Membership & Experience
Both Peloton and Hydrow strongly encourage the use of their membership platform with their machine. While both do offer their own version of a “Just Row mode,” the member-exclusive fitness content is what sets these rowing machines apart from the rest.
It’s important to note a fundamental difference between the Peloton subscription and Hydrow Membership.
Peloton originally started with cycling and has since expanded beyond to include a variety of different workouts for use on (and off) their line up of fitness equipment. Their focus is getting users on their machines and investing in the Peloton community.
Peloton’s content is designed to simulate an in-person fitness class, giving you access to high-quality trainers, coaches, and instructors that you might not otherwise be able to have.
Hydrow was founded by rowers, for everyone. Our focus has always been on bringing accessibility to rowing – allowing more people to enjoy this incredible sport. Hydrow’s Membership focuses on connecting users with rowing, connecting their mind and body, and creating a supportive and encouraging community for all.
One of the biggest differences between Hydrow and other fitness subscriptions is Hydrow’s Live Outdoor Reality™. Hydrow’s content is designed to simulate a realistic on-the-water experience. Prioritizing the immersive nature of the workouts, Hydrow aims for authentic human connection. The Athlete leading your workout is not in charge, they’re rowing with you – motivating and encouraging you through each stroke.
With Hydrow, you won’t see microphones on faces, sunglasses, or anything else that creates a barrier between you and the Athlete. Community and connection is in the DNA of rowing – and in the DNA of Hydrow.
Priced at $44/mo for their “all-access membership,” Peloton allows unlimited profiles for your household and access to their entire library of both live classes and on-demand classes.
A Hydrow Membership provides access to the Live Outdoor Reality™ content that makes it unique. Hydrow’s membership is $38/mo, just slightly cheaper than the Peloton membership.
Variety of Workouts
Peloton’s platform features a mix of cycling, running, yoga, meditation, strength, stretching, and now rowing. The majority of Peloton’s classes are filmed in a studio setting, on the Peloton machines. Peloton does offer outdoor running workouts that are not filmed in a studio.
Hydrow’s platform features primarily rowing content, but also includes hundreds of strength training, Pilates, yoga, running, mobility, and cross-training workouts too. Rather than being filmed in a studio, the vast majority of Hydrow’s content is filmed on-location – either on the water, or in a scenic location for the On-the-Mat content.
While there are a few select workouts, like the Learn to Row series, filmed on a Hydrow rowing machine in a studio setting, you’ll see that most of Hydrow’s content is filmed in beautiful locations around the world.
Hydrow’s workouts are developed with a deep understanding of fitness and health. Each workout utilizes whole body movements to maximize the benefits you’ll receive for the time you spend exercising. Workouts are structured and graded to ensure the delivery of a quality benefit, delivering results to members over time.
Peloton’s rowing workouts include guided rowing workouts, Row Bootcamp classes and scenic workouts, along with training programs and challenges. Guided workouts are led in a studio setting on the Peloton Row. The Row Bootcamp classes feature full body workouts on and off the Row. Here, you’ll see a combination of rowing and strength training. Scenic workouts are unguided rows through different waterways.
It’s important to note that Peloton’s rowing content will not be available on the Peloton App at the launch of the Peloton Row. This means you will not be able to use the rowing content on your mobile device in combination with another rowing machine like a Concept2 or other rowing machine. More information is not yet available in regards to when rowing content will be available on the Peloton app.
Most Hydrow’s rowing workouts are filmed on the water, giving you the most realistic virtual rowing experience. Hydrow offers a variety of types of rowing workouts including beginner, HIIT, journey (unguided rows), and more. If you’re new to rowing, Hydrow offers a Learn to Row series to get you familiar with the fundamentals of rowing. Whether you’re looking for a quick 5 minute warm-up row, or an intense 60-minute endurance row, Hydrow has something for you.
Hydrow’s mobile app hosts our extensive library of rowing workouts for use on any rowing machine. With the Hydrow mobile app, you’ll have access to all of your favorite rowing workouts and Athletes to use with any rowing machine you choose – whether you’re at a gym, staying at a hotel, or visiting a friend with a different model rower.
Instructors + Athletes
Both Peloton and Hydrow feature an impressive line-up of world-class athletes including Olympians, national team members, collegiate athletes, and more.
Peloton’s fitness classes are led by a team of high-energy, motivating instructors who are there to hype you up and get you through your workout. While their entire line-up of instructors is impressive, their rowing instructors include Ash Pryor (US Rowing coach and Relentless Rowing Academy creator), Alex Karwoski (Team USA Olympic rower), and Katie Wang (former instructor for Barry’s Bootcamp), among others.
Hydrow’s rows are led by Athletes whose goal is not only to get you through your workout, but to get you fully immersed in it. Each of Hydrow’s rowing Athletes comes with an impressive (and extensive) background in rowing. Hydrow’s On the Mat workouts are led by experts in their field. With Athletes like Dani Hansen (2x Silver Medalist Team USA Paralympic rower), Aquil Abdullah (Team USA Olympic rower), and Aisyah Rafaee (Singapore’s first Olympian in the sport of rowing) guiding you through your workout, you’ll experience a connection with your Athlete that you won’t find anywhere else.
Hydrow Athletes, though high-achieving and recognized around the world, are real people you’d want to hang out with. They aren’t taking charge of the workout or yelling instructions as they row. They’re connecting with you while rowing together. The leading Athlete is doing the same thing that you’ll do during the workout – linking with you in the rhythm of the movement.
Peloton Row vs Hydrow: Which rowing machine is right for you?
So, with all this information… which rowing machine is right for you? Let’s look at a few key factors:
If space is a concern, the Hydrow Wave’s compact footprint is a major selling point. Coming in at 14” shorter and 5” narrower, the Wave fits in tighter spaces and still brings a high-quality connected rowing machine into your home.
If price is a concern, the Hydrow Wave is the frontrunner for getting the most bang for your buck. Priced at less than half the cost of the Peloton Row, the Hydrow wave brings you a comparable workout experience with a much smaller investment. Hydrow also offers financing through Klarna.
If you enjoy a studio setting, Peloton Row’s classes will provide the studio workout class experience you’re seeking with instructors who will push you through intense workouts.
If you’re looking for a realistic rowing experience, Hydrow’s Live Outdoor Reality™ content will transport you onto the water from the comfort of your home. Hydrow’s Athletes aim to connect with you and support you through your workout.
If you already have other Peloton equipment, either option could be a good fit for you. The ability to use one Peloton membership across multiple pieces of fitness equipment is a selling point. However, the price point of the Peloton Row means you could purchase a Hydrow Wave and several years of a Hydrow Membership for the same price – providing access to a whole new library of content in the process.
If you desire AI coaching, Peloton’s Form Assist can provide real time feedback on form during your workout through AI technology. The Form Assist displays on your screen while you workout for real-time feedback.
If you desire human coaching, Hydrow’s personal 1:1 coaching is a great option for you. You’ll get to spend time with a Hydrow Personal Coach, who will deliver personalized guidance and feedback in solo sessions designed to meet you where you are and help you reach your unique goals.
If you’re ready to start rowing ASAP, the Hydrow Wave holds the fastest shipping speeds and earliest delivery timeline. You’ll be rowing by next week!
Ultimately, the factors that matter most to you will determine which rowing machine is the best fit for you.
To take a deeper look at the Hydrow vs Hydrow Wave side by side, visit our rower comparison.