Fitness Reality 4000MR Magnetic Rower Review

For the die-hard rowing enthusiasts out there, I present to you the Fitness Reality 4000MR Magnetic Rower, one of the only indoor rowers I have seen with full rowing motion handlebars rather than the traditional pull handle. At first glance the 4000MR doesn’t look like your typical rowing machine and in fact, it resembles more of a rower and elliptical hybrid. Once you see the machine in action you’ll realize that the dual independent handlebars are meant to act like the oars of a boat, providing added strength training for your arms, shoulders, and chest. The frame is made of solid steel that can support a user weight capacity of up to 300 lbs, and is also completely foldable, making it easy to store away when not in use.

The FItness Reality 4000MR magnetic rower is a unique machine to say the least, and it’s difficult to provide a side by side comparison with other models. The size of the machine is definitely friendly for smaller spaces, with dimensions of only 72” L x 25” W x 51.5” H. This makes it over two feet shorter than the Xterra ERG7000 magnetic rower and a foot shorter than the NordicTrack RW200 magnetic rower. The 4000MR is on the heavier side though as it weighs 116.4 lbs when assembled, due to the dual transmission mechanism and magnetic flywheel. It’s small and sturdy and I love the 4000MR for apartments or smaller houses, especially with the foldable frame.

Technology is always something I look for with home fitness machines, especially in an age where almost everything can be connected via Bluetooth or WiFi. The Fitness Reality 4000MR comes up a bit short in the technology field, with only a 5” fully backlit LCD monitor that cannot integrate with smartphones or tablets. The monitor does display stats like the time, distance, calories burned, stroke count, RPM, and tension levels. The 4000MR does come with 10 preset workout programs and 5 customizable programs that users can toggle between using the monitor which is great and hard to find in magnetic rowing machines at this price point.

The Fitness Reality 4000MR comes equipped with an impressive 16 levels of dual transmission magnetic tension that can be electronically controlled by the user through the monitor. The flywheel mechanism is chain driven, which allows for a much smoother transition between resistance levels mid-workout. The magnetic flywheel on the Fitness Reality 4000MR is noticeably silent, and while some rowers do enjoy the sound of the water in a water resistance rower tank, I have always preferred the smooth, silent experience of a magnetic rower.

Assembly for the Fitness Reality 4000MR is a little bit more work than other rowers that are more or less ready to be used out of the box. The dual independent rowing handles need to be installed, so expect total assembly to take about an hour for most people. You can purchase the 4000MR directly from the Fitness Reality site or from Amazon. While both sites will give you free shipping, Amazon is generally able to get it to your door faster than most dedicated websites. Besides, Fitness Reality only ships within the 48 continental states in the U.S., so if you live elsewhere Amazon is going to be your best bet.

FItness Reality doesn’t quite have the same brand power that industry rivals like NordicTrack or Xterra have, but the machines generally get high reviews so customer satisfaction seems to be a high priority. Take the warranty for instance: Fitness Reality provides a nice coverage on its products with a 5-year warranty on the frame, 3-year warranty on the parts, and 2-year warranty for electronics. Fitness Reality also offers the 4000MR at a very reasonable price compared to the rest of the indoor rower industry. At just under $700, the Fitness Reality 4000MR gives you a unique rowing experience on a high quality machine from a trusted brand name.

Fitness Reality 4000MR Magnetic Rower Pros

  • A competitive price tag for a high quality machine
  • A unique rowing motion using the dual independent rowing handles
  • A sturdy frame with a 300 lb weight capacity
  • Foldable frame makes it easy to store away when not in use
  • 5” backlit LCD monitor
  • 15 programs that can fully customize your workout
  • 16 levels of dual transmission magnetic tension
  • Strong warranty and customer support
  • Large contoured seat with extra cushion

Fitness Reality 4000MR Magnetic Rower Cons

  • No Bluetooth or WiFi connection or smartphone integration
  • The machine is fairly heavy at 116 lbs
  • Even when folded the shape of the machine is cumbersome
  • Monitor could be bigger 
  • Requires a home electrical outlet to plug into
8Expert Score
Fitness Reality 4000MR Magnetic Rower Review

I’ll be honest, I was skeptical of the Fitness Reality 4000MR magnetic rower when I first saw it. Having been so used to the standard style of rowing machine, the dual independent handles threw me off. But the rowing motion is excellent and I know rowing enthusiasts will enjoy the realistic movements while working out. The only thing that would have made this a total package for me would have been a Bluetooth connection and a bigger screen, which is even more disappointing because Fitness Reality includes these in cheaper rowers than the 4000MR. Other than that, the Fitness Reality 4000MR is one of the closest things you can get to actually rowing a boat in the comfort of your own home!

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