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In a world where we’re all working out from home, there’s a new craze that’s hitting the market and giving us all more options for our home gyms: connected rowing machines. 

If the concept of rowing workouts is new to you, bear with me because, in this article, I’m going to be reviewing one that’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen before - both in design and experience.

Rowing is one of the best cardio workouts you can do as it has the unique ability to target 85% of your body’s muscles. A full-body workout that’s fun and can be accomplished in the half the time of other traditional workouts? That stat absolutely piqued my interest.

I am very excited to share with you a brand new connecting rowing machine, the Cityrow Go Max. I’ll talk a little bit about the brand, the features of the product, and its pros and cons so that you can decide if this piece of fitness equipment is a good choice for your home gym.

Why a Smart Rower for Exercising?

Before I dive into the specifics of the Cityrow Go Max, I want to first highlight some of the reasons why you might consider a rowing machine over let’s say a connected home bike or a treadmill.

It’s a full-body workout

Unlike most other machines, rowing machines actually use 85% of the muscles in your body during the movements. When rowing, you’re using your legs, glutes, arms, core, and back as you push and pull your way through your workout. In addition to muscle recruitment, you’re also working to increase your cardiovascular capacity. The result is a full-body workout that includes cardio and strength training all in one - basically, you’re killing two birds with one stone!

They allow you to experience a class setting from home

Smart fitness equipment has made a huge impact on society over the last few years, but even more so over the last year with the pandemic. People want to be able to achieve a stellar workout from home since they can’t or don’t want to attend a class or go to the gym. This is where connected fitness comes into play. Companies like PelotonMYX FitnessBowflex, and more are making it simple to bring the gym home and to allow people to still enjoy the connection and community experience that they’re missing from in-person sessions.

You get to learn something new

Rowing is a very different form of exercise and one that takes some skills to master - and that’s the fun part! The more you row, the better you’ll get, and the more efficient and fun your workout will be.

It’s low impact fitness

This is a biggie. So many people burn out or injure themselves on cardio machines. Treadmills, for example, can be very jarring on the joints thanks to the repetitive motions and the impact of your feet hitting the belt. Rowers, on the other hand, are virtually impact-free, but they still provide ample intensity.

about the brand CITYROW GO and their MAX rower

From NYC rowing studio to connected smart rowing machine - this brand has come a long way!

What is Cityrow Go? A Look Behind the Brand

Cityrow Go is a rowing-based fitness company that offers rowing classes, a comprehensive fitness app, and now their Cityrow Go Max, a multisensory smart rowing machine for your home.

The company was founded in 2013 by Helaine Knapp and is headquartered in NYC. The brand has studios across the country and can best be described as the SoulCycle of rowing. Folks can experience high-intensity indoor rowing either live in the studio or on-demand through their app.

Like most fitness companies, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Cityrow was challenged to find a way to innovate and to continue to provide value to their customers. They answered this challenge in a big way by creating their Cityrow Go Max indoor home rowing machine.

This innovative home rower combines the intensity of a rowing workout with the experience of on-demand, trainer-led classes, all from the comfort of your living room. While there are certainly other connected rowers on the market, Cityrow stands apart thanks to their intelligently designed fitness programming and their sleek aesthetics.

Next, we’ll take a closer look at the Cityrow Go Max, analyzing its features and breaking down the benefits.

Introducing CITYROW GO MAX Rower: Full Review

the Max Rower by CITYROW GO

The Max has the screen attached to the rower and CITYROW's app experience built right in!

As I mentioned before, this rower is unique in both programming and design. It’s designed to be not only effective for your workout, but also to look stunning displayed in your home. This is similar to the design of Ergatta, another popular smart rower, but completely different in programming.

When it comes to the programming features of this machine, I would best describe it as the Peloton of rowing machines. If you’re familiar with Peloton, then you know that one of their biggest draws, and the reason for their cult-like following, is their content. 

Cityrow Go is similar in that they offer hundreds of on-demand (although currently no live) workouts that you can choose from. And the workouts are not exclusive to the rower - they give you full access to cross-training workouts that will help take your body and your performance to the next level.

They also gave us a promo code that will save you an additional $100 off, just use code FITHEALTHYMOMMA100 at checkout.

Tons of Programming Choices for Workouts

workouts and programming offered by CITYROW GO MAX

Finishing an exhilarating workout with CITYROW GO's workouts and programming. High fives all-around!

The Cityrow Go app, which is accessible right from the included screen, which by the way, swivels for optimal viewing both on and off the rower, has a ton of content and workout programming to choose from. Their class selection includes the following:

  • Signature HIIT
  • Endurance
  • Strength
  • Yoga
  • Kinstretch
  • Cardio + Core

All of the workouts are led by world-class instructors who know how to motivate you to push yourself safely and effectively towards your goals. Each week, they release brand new classes so that you can rest assured that you’ll never get bored.

The app library is simple to navigate and it allows you to sort and filter your options by time, type, instructor, and more. And the best part is that the workouts are great for everyone from beginners to advanced athletes. You can start from right where you’re at and progress towards your goals. You’ll even get to see your stats on screen in real-time!

Aesthetics: Sleek Design?

One look at this machine and you’ll notice its beauty. The Cityrow Go Max is crafted from premium, sustainable American Ash wood and black powder-coated aluminum. It’s designed to go with your home decor, not to be hidden away in your basement or spare room.

The best part is that it folds up quickly (less than 20 seconds!) and it takes up less space than an end table when it’s folded up, which makes it the ideal addition to any room in your house. This is a particularly appealing feature for those who may not have a dedicated home gym space.

The other aesthetic feature that will catch your eye is the WaterFlywheel. The beautiful water tank sits underneath the rower, creating a rush of water with every stroke. The water tank not only adds to the overall look and feel of the rower, but it creates a realistic rowing experience and adds just the right amount of resistance to every workout.

Need-to-Know MAX Rower Specs




19.5" sweat-resistant touchscreen with two 10-watt speakers and Bluetooth connectivity for your headphones and/or heart rate monitor.

Frame Material:

sustainable American Ash wood and black powder-coated aluminum.

Connectivity & Power:

Long cable for easy access to a plug no matter where you are and the ability to choose a WiFi connection or connect with an ethernet cable.


In Use: Length - 83.5”| Width 22.25” |Height 45.25”
Stored: Depth - 24” | Width 22.25” | Height 83.5”
Weight: 75 lbs dry | 112 lb with water

User Limits:

Max height: 39"
Max weight: 375 lbs.

Delivery and warranty information:

Comes fully assembled to your threshold, all you need to do is add water with the included syphon. There’s a 5-year warranty on the frame, a 3-year warranty on the non-electronic components (seat, tank, clutch), and a 1-year warranty on the screen.


What Makes Cityrow Go Max Unique? Features and Benefits

Cityrow Go wants you to know that you don’t need to get on a bike to get in a great sweat session. Their marketing and design takes a direct aim at the reigning home gym king, Peloton, by making their system and programming very similar, but in rowing form. Rowing can improve your well-being, but what benefits does this machine offer?

studio workouts to at-home smart rower and floor workouts

CITYROW GO Max is super unique, as they take their studio-style workouts and bring them to your home for on and off rower workouts!

Here are some of the unique features and benefits of the Cityrow Go Max rower:

The rower was born in the studio

Remember, Cityrow Go began as a fitness studio that offers rowing classes, so with thousands of live classes under their belts, they know a thing or two about how to create an optimal machine and programming. 

They release new classes each and every week

You’ll never have to worry about your fitness routine getting stale or boring. They keep the content fresh and exciting by releasing brand new classes across a variety of modalities each and every week.

Their instructors are industry experts

Each one of their trained instructors are movement experts with diverse backgrounds. But each one of them has a passion for functional fitness and a desire to share it with the world.

They offer a “Just Row” feature

Not into taking a class? You can hop on and row for as long as you want, at the intensity you want with their Just Row feature. You’ll still get your real-time performance data, personal goal tracking, and be able to listen to music (theirs or your own). From this feature, you can also build your own program using the quick-set intervals.

They offer off the rower classes, too

This is one of my favorite parts of this rowing machine, their extensive cross-training options. An effective workout includes a variety of movement patterns and a mixture of strength, conditioning, and cardio, and Cityrow allows you to achieve that by offering classes both on and off the rower.

Final Thoughts: Should you invest in this smart rowing machine?

After doing a ton of research into this brand and the Max rower, I am thoroughly impressed with the product and the programming. Rowing is quickly becoming a popular fitness activity, and one that can give cycling a run for its money.

If you’re someone who is looking for a piece of home gym equipment that allows you to achieve a great workout from home, then I strongly advise you to check out this machine. Rowing is so beneficial for your body and can provide a superior workout that you just can’t get with any other type of cardio.

I’ve researched multiple smart rowers recently, and I have to say that this is hands down one of the best options out there right now. Between its gorgeous aesthetics, simple storage, and amazing programming, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better package. That said, this isn’t for everyone.

If you’re someone who prefers a training style that isn’t trainer-led or class-based, then the Ergatta rower vs CITYROW GO Max is worth looking into as it provides a completely different approach to training with its gaming-inspired content. And if you want to get as close to a real rowing experience as possible, feeling as though you’re truly out on the water, then check out the Hydrow vs. CITYROW GO MAX comparison to get a better feel.
Use our link and code for $100 off:
About the Author
Tami Smith, CPT, Nutritionist

Tami Smith is a certified Nutritionist and an ACE certified fitness trainer, specializing in pre and post-natal fitness. She studied business and earned her bachelor's degree in Business Economics. Tami is a mom of two and women's health advocate. Her passion is to help people live a fit, healthy life through proper nutrition and exercise!

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